Re: What is the most challenging question for the KM community? What is our biggest fear? #state-of-KM

Douglas Weidner


Our terminology may have been slightly different, but fundamentally it seems to me, that we are in total agreement -- even quoting Drucker, as I often do?

And, of course, if it wasn't obvious, I think the activities associated with new K creation (aka innovation, etc.) by whatever name, are absolutely essential to ultimate organizational success, if aided/enabled by KM.

But, what about aptitude (aka skills and competencies) vs. attitude (motivation, persistence, passion, etc. etc.).

In my opinion, I think there is great potential in increasing employee attitudes, that might exceed just better KM techniques and initiatives. Or reversed, whatever KM initiatives and techniques are proposed.

To come full circle, my fear is that much KM will fall short of expectations if we ignore the people component. But, the people component is far more than just traditional change management, but about motivations, passions, etc. which is transformational change management, by my definition.

Thanks for your comments.

Douglas Weidner
Chief CKM Instructor

On Wed, May 15, 2019 at 10:29 AM tman9999@... [sikmleaders] <sikmleaders@...> wrote:

DougW wrote:
>>>If innovation is all about *creating *NEW Knowledge - (some say discovering, as if it already exists but not yet known), then *how is thatnot KM*?

In fact, it is not unreasonable to assume that *ultimately *the creation of new K will be more critical than the transfer of K (flow) in which many KMers are now focused.<<<

In fact, you could say it the other way around: KM is all about driving innovation! Peter Drucker agrees - ca. 1993 he wrote recognized the shift we were undergoing to a knowledge economy, and declared that knowledge creates value in the firm in two principle ways: it drives innovation; and increases productivity. I guess if I were going to answer Matt’s question about what I fear about the KM, it would be around the notion that we, as practitioners, lose sight of Peter Drucker’s insight, and fail to maintain focus on driving out measurable value from our KM work.

As for the transfer of knowledge being an example of knowledge as a flow, I don’t necessarily agree with that. That actually sounds to me more like treating knowledge as a stock.

Flow represents the application of tacit knowledge, which is “sticky” and resistant to transfer. So when I think about *knowledge as a flow* I’m thinking about *knowledge in action.*

Whether it’s co-workers collaboratively coming up with some innovative way to do something that neither of them could have identified on their own, or an expert applying their years of experience to a novel problem and solving it, knowledge is being applied actively. It is not being transferred, per se, other than to the problem, challenge, or issue that is the focus of the knowledge worker’s attention at that moment. Whether the activity itself produces any artifacts is of secondary importance. The flow of knowledge is where the value creation occurs. And any new knowledge accrues to those who were involved in its creation. The expert gains more expertise. The co-workers gain new insights that are likely unique to each of them.

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