Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Notes from KM World 05

KM World is a great place to stimulate new thoughts about KM and more importantly about the business. These notes were complied from a variety of speakers and I apologize for not giving all the authors credit.

Some of the business concepts I heard emerge this years are:

1. We’re becoming a knowledge economy and the indicators of business success are changing. (Verna Allee)
- The change is from purely financial indicators (tangible items) to intellectual capital indicators (intangibles, knowledge, etc.).
- Social consciousness is changing how a business is perceived. Investors look at the bottom-line but consumers look at “are you a good company.” Reputation is everything. Your brand is your value.

2. The value in an organization is it’s network. Content serves as the backbone, put people connections are more important

3. The highest level of customer service is tying your success in with your customer’s success, share the risk. Design products in collaboration with your customers. (Hubert Saint-Onge)

4. A knowledge strategy is a component of your overall business strategy. (Hubert Saint-Onge)
- Business strategy, why are you in business
- Customer strategy - what are you going to do for your customer
- Organization strategy - how are you goin gto do this
- Knowledge strategy - how are you going to manage knolwedge and expertise to accomlish this.

5. The model of a professional is changing. More people are working at home or on the road instead of an office. How do you make the person more effective? (Tom Davenport)

6. Managing you knowledge is key for change and innovation

Some new ideas on KM strategies I heard are:

Personal knowledge management - personal productivity (Tom Davenport). Focus on making the person more productive, recognizing that individuals are very different in habits and norms. How can you link the personal productivity tools with your KM systems? Need to develop an e-workforce program that includes training on tools.

· How to better use the tools you already have? (training on how to search, convey messages in PowerPoint presentations, etc.)
· Cultural anthropology/ shadowing/ mentoring – How does someone work, how can you help them better prepare for their job.
· Linking personal devices (Blackberry, cell phones, etc.) with organization systems.

Watching vs. searching/RSS readers (Darlene Fichter) – The new trend will to get notification of information sent to you as it is being produced. RSS readers get information that’s coming out now vs. Google searches that historical content.

Contact and the social networks are key. The person who knows is more important that the content.
- There were lots of discussions of systems that mine contact information in e-mails. Ethical issues were also discussed
- Finding the galaxies vs. stars (Peter Gloor)– Tap into the hubs of networks. Finding people who are in contact with others who have large networks.
- Most productive people have strong internal and external networks.

The value of document management systems is the layers you put on top of the systems (Yair Dembinsky). I was surprise to see the decreased emphasis on CM at KM World. It seems that CM has matured to the point where people want to talk about more exciting new ideas, with CM being a given.

Embed KM processes in ways of doing your job. Tools should operate behind the scenes. Folks are unlikely to go to another system.
· Provide templates.
· Embed training into the job
· Capture knowledge as it is created

Dialog is needed for information to be used. People don’t use information until they can talk with someone they trust.
· Plato -Text is best to capture and store knowledge. Meaning is best derived from dialog (Bill Ives)
· Collaboration is needed to add the context.


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