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Knowledge Management is about....

Knowledge Management is about.... | KM | Scoop.it

Dr. Dan:  Are you a document whisperer?  Me neither.

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Dan Kirsch's curator insight, July 31, 2013 8:12 AM

This turned out to be a KM conversation about asking questions.


I had a telephone chat yesterday with someone who has been following my KM scoop.it curations and he asked what I had "against documents."  I asked what he meant by that question as I don't recall having ever said that documents were bad, or should be banned, or should be expelled from the country for bad behavior.  So what was he asking?


In reply what he essentially said was that in reading my posts about Knowledge Management NOT being the same as IT, that he'd thought that I had meant that I thought documents were bad.  Documents being held in repositories.  Repositories = IT.


No, not bad.  Just inappropriate for certain knowledge needs.


Okay he said, can you give me a simple "sound-bite" kind of sense then of what I was trying to get across.  Something that he could go back and toss about during discussions with his bosses about what the issue is.


So I gave him this:  You cannot ask a document a question.


You can have a repository full of documents.  They may be mighty fine documents.  Very pretty documents.  Neatly tucked away documents.  Perhaps they're documents that can even be found by those searching for them.  Perhaps.  But the short of it is that when (not if) you find what you think is "the" document it is likely going to not fully answer all questions that you have.  It can't.  It wasn't created (probably) to answer all of YOUR questions, just to address the need of the moment when that document was created.  So you may likely have a question.  Or five or six.  And there it is -- you cannot ask a document a question.


So in considering this a moment he realized my point -- that you then are going to have to go find someone to ask those questions of.  


And he also connected the dots that demonstrated that if you had access to an expertise locator and a good knowledge map, you might have avoided the time spent working document retrieval and instead gone directly to the person.  With the answers.


Exactly my point.

Benita Yon's comment, August 1, 2013 9:05 AM
Exactly my point, too: www.experience-network.org
Dan Kirsch's comment, August 1, 2013 9:10 AM
And so it is! Nice video too!
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Can Knowledge Sharing Transform Learning?

Can Knowledge Sharing Transform Learning? | KM | Scoop.it
Josh Bersin | Chief Learning Officer As the corporate learning industry has evolved in the past few years, we now spend a lot of time talking about Gen X and millennials' learning styles,... (Can Knowledge Sharing Transform Learning?
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Dan Kirsch's curator insight, August 20, 2013 9:37 AM

Interesting piece on expert-to-expert learning, but I'd suggest that what's missing is a recognition of the need to integrate a Knowledge Management and Organizational Learning strategy.  Peter Senge talked about this 20 years ago, and it is still valid today.  Mary Crossan presented opportunities to use forms of knowledge sharing as part of building a learning organization more than a decade ago, and that is still valid today.  


So why then do organizations seemingly struggle with making that "learning organization" effective?  I believe that it is because of a lack of understanding of the integral connection between gaining new knowledge from which organizational learning takes place, which then leads to seeking new knowledge based on what was learned.  And rinse, repeat as necessary.

Jose Carlos Favero's comment, September 26, 2013 11:26 PM
KM must secure value generation by coming to terms with business requirements. Critical knowledge identification is a crucial input for developing the business strategy and KM actions must secure learning amongst those lines in order to be successful
Jose Carlos Favero's comment, September 26, 2013 11:26 PM
KM must secure value generation by coming to terms with business requirements. Critical knowledge identification is a crucial input for developing the business strategy and KM actions must secure learning amongst those lines in order to be successful