Knowledge Management andLearning Organizations Enterprise Excellence Series
Outline • Why the Interest? • Knowledge Management • Trends in Knowledge Management • Forms of Knowledge • Intellectual Capital • Challenges & Critical Success Factors • Learning Organizations • Team Learning & Personal Mastery
Knowledge Management • Some Definitions • Policies, procedures and technologies employed for operating a continuously updated linked pair of networked databases. (Anthes) • Bringing tacit knowledge to the surface, consolidating it in forms by which it is more widely accessible, and promoting its continuing creation. (Birket) • Process of capturing, distributing and effectively using knowledge. (Davenport) • Knowledge management is the process of capturing a company s collective expertise wherever it resides-in databases, on paper, or in people s head-and distributing it to wherever it can help produce the biggest payoff. Knowledge management is getting the right knowledge to the right person at the right time .(Info Week 10/20/97)
Paradoxes of Knowledge • Using knowledge does not consume it but it does get obsolete. • Transferring knowledge does not lose it but market mechanisms allow ownership. • Knowledge is abundant, but the ability to use it is scarce. • Producing knowledge resists organization. • Much of it walks out the door at the end of the day.
KM vs Information Management • One expert calls idea that “knowledge management is about managing knowledge, while information management is about managing information” a “myth” • She says knowledge and information are the same “stuff” but that “[IM] focuses on finding the stuff and moving it around, while the [KM] is also concerned about how people create and use the stuff. • Also “knowledge management deals with a far broader range of approaches to communicating and using both knowledge and information. • Source: Ruth Williams (PWC consultant) on CIO.com, 18 October 1999
Problems with Implementation • In too many instances, knowledge management initiatives start in the information technology department ultimately focusing on the IT infrastructure, and what the IT people deem important. As a result many of these efforts focus on information rather than knowledge. • It is difficult to evaluate learning or to place a value on intangibles such as knowledge, especially tacit knowledge. Some types of knowledge take years to digest so that the benefits of learning may not appear until some time in the future.
The Knowledge Value Chain We must recognise that there is a value chain for “Knowledge” in just the same way that Michael Porter (1985) proposed that business functions be organised in terms of the value added to customers. Integration Preservation Transmission Application Creation • Within the value chain, business processes and KM processes interweave and at the touch points, create the “Points of Confluence” that require integration of KM practices It can be argued that part of the societal role of a university is to nurture and protect this value chain
Shared Vision • The practice of shared vision involves the skills of unearthing shared pictures of the future that foster genuine commitment and enrollment rather than compliance. • The single thread that runs through all success stories is the involvement of large numbers of individuals in identifying the vision. How the words get written are just as important as what get written.. • All must understand, share in and contribute to the organization s vision, or that vision will not become a reality. • It is not truly a vision until it connects with the personal vision of the people throughout the organization--a by product of interactions of personal visions.