One of the themes at KM World in October 2012 was that the value of knowledge management is in the network, i.e. the value comes from the connections and the collective whole, rather than individual people, activities, processes, or technology. This was a shift from previous years where there was more focus on technology. That the value of knowledge is in the network, is something we have known for a long, long, time. There has long been acknowledgement that “it’s who you know,” in business and in life. What has changed in the last 10 years is the ability to stay connected to people and to connect with people in geographically diverse locations through the use of technology, but it’s still about, “who you know.” Our networks provide access to opportunities that we might not have been able to discover on our own. They pass along interesting articles, books, and other pieces of knowledge and information. Someone says something and that makes us think of something else or ask a question that’s not been asked before. Someone else builds on our ideas, it becomes an iterative process and suddenly we have created something new, some innovation that didn’t exist before. When … Continue reading →
I attended KM World 2012 in Washington, DC last month, for the first time since 2006 (when it was still in San Jose, California). Let me first just say that I enjoyed the new location very much, not just because it’s a much shorter flight for me, but it seemed more intimate–easier to meet and talk to people and find my way around. I did miss being able to visit all my friends in the Bay Area, but I will get out there again. Okay, so on to what I learned and observed at KM World 2012… I think one of the big things I observed was a shift away from all the talk of technology, don’t get me wrong, people still talked tech, but I found less of an emphasis on it this year and much more emphasis on the value of the network, i.e. the people-to-people connections. Certainly any of us who have been doing KM for a while know that this is the case, that technology just enables and supports the activities of the network, but for most of the last 15-20 years we have had to fight against the idea that technology was the silver bullet … Continue reading →
Okay, so back for part 2 of Creativity and Knowledge Management, picking up where we left off. We were talking about left-brain and right-brain and the different KM activities that fit in each area, and that’s fine, but what about right-brain activities that aren’t knowledge management activities that use knowledge management activities in their creation? For example, one of the experiential exercises we did at the conference was recreating stylized watercolours of a frog and a spider. We each got a piece of the picture, which had been cut up into squares and we had to reproduce our square onto a bigger, rectangular piece of watercolour paper. Both the squares and the rectangles were numbered on the back, which made putting them together again easy. This was collaborative, it used meta-data (the numbers on the back) and we had the opportunity to go back and add additional detail to any of the pieces after we’d seen them all put together–all KM activities, but with art as the content matter. Are there other KM activities that could be demonstrated through art? Lessons Learned? Peer Assists? Content and Document Management? Communities of Practice? Innovation? So art becomes a metaphor for knowledge management. … Continue reading →
A few weeks ago, I participated in LawTech Camp in Toronto. Connie Crosby and I were launching our beta-test for our Law Firm KM assessment tool, so we had an opportunity to do a demo presentation and talk about KM, I’ve posted the slides on SlideShare, click on the <demo presentation> or <about KM> links to see the slides. There was a lot of discussion both during and after the presentation about one of the slides, so Connie wrote a blog post about it, which you can see here: http://www.slaw.ca/2012/06/11/km-101-more-on-technology-complexity/#top.
Imagine this scenario: you’re working hard on a project or task, you’ve got a deadline you’ve got to meet, but you’re stuck, you don’t know how to finish. What do you do? Well, if you are experienced in the ways of knowledge management you: ask your colleagues, ask the Community of Practice you’re a member of, search in your expertise location system or yellow pages at peoples profiles, post something on your internal Q&A or social media application, you search your corporate document management system, ECM system, or other such repository/repositories to find the answer. And you find the answer, doing considerably less work than creating the solution yourself and you meet your deadline. With all that time you saved you take a couple of minutes to post the solution, so that someone in your shoes days/weeks/months/years from now can find your solution and be lazy too! *Thanks to Kathleen Wilson for the idea for this post.
Hi, Sorry I haven’t posted anything in so long, I guess I have been busy with a project and business development and I actually fit some vacation in for the first time in 3.5 years. Why don’t I tell you about a couple of things I’m working on? I am going to be doing a course at the iSchool at the University of Toronto on March 2, 2012. The course is called How to Align People, Process, and Technology for Knowledge Management Success and is based on my Ark Group report from last year. An automated checklist to assess where to get started with your knowledge management initiative. This is still in development, but we’re expecting to release it in the next few months. We’ll be beta-testing it in a few weeks and already have some small organizations lined-up for that phase. I’ll share more about this initiative in the future. I’ve also seen a couple of technology platforms that are quite interesting, not that KM is about the technology, but knowledge is social and these are two social knowledge management platforms. The first is Vedalis and the second is SpeechBobble, and if you consider that knowledge management is about connecting people to … Continue reading →
Is social media part of knowledge management? Unequivocally, “yes!” Knowledge management is all about finding the knowledge you need when you need it and learning from previous mistakes whether they are yours or someone else’s. Social media is about making connections to other people, and sharing knowledge. Now, granted some of the knowledge that gets shared on social media is more noise than knowledge, but noise can be knowledge if your colleague tweets that they are stuck in traffic, you know they are going to be late for that 9am meeting, so it’s all a matter of perspective and context, a classic knowledge issue. I recently read a three social media books, and took a social media course because social media often comes up in the KM consulting that I do and I wanted to have a better understanding of it and how it can be used, other than what I had figured out on my own. One of the books I read, “The Executive’s Guide to Enterprise Social Media Strategy,” by David B. Thomas and Mike Barlow, identified that knowledge management has been given short shrift, but argued that social media was on the verge of revolutionizing and transforming … Continue reading →