Thursday, August 12, 2004

Some questions on KM...

Here are some questions that a KM student asked me. And here's also what I had to say in response...

2. Please describe what KM is, and any benefits that can result from it.

Knowledge Management in my view is a combination of policies, processes and practices that help the organization learn together, work together and innovate. The primary benefits are efficiency, and innovation. It helps in the sharing of best practices, locating experts, learning from past mistakes, reuse of software tools and components, and collaborative tasks. It helps avoid reinvent the wheel thus saving effort, money and time. It helps in the process of learning together and sharing thus leading to innovation.

3. What is your perspective on issues relating to the management of tacit knowledge?

Tacit knowledge cannot be managed in its truest sense. Tacit knowledge can be transferred though. Soft processes (one that are dependant primarily on people participation and have a cultural impact) can be established to transfer tacit knowledge. But having said this, it is true that most of the knowledge that needs to be transferred is tacit in nature rather than the explicit. What this means is that there needs to be more emphasis on cultural change and soft practices rather than repositories and hi-fi collaborative tools that may collect 'dust'.

4. How are the most successful KM systems managing tacit knowledge?

As pointed out in response to the question above, it needs to be 'managed' by addressing the cultural aspects and by establishing soft practices like knowledge sharing sessions, mentoring etc.

5. What do you think some of the critical success factors of KM are?

1. The team in charge of KM
2. The culture of the organization
3. The top management drive and support for the KM initiative
4. The quality and all-encompassing nature of the enabler-tools

6. What are the main challenges of KM ?

1. Organizational culture
2. Lack of management support in a profit-centered organization

7. Do you feel that any part (or all) of Knowledge Management is a fad?


8. In your opinion, will Knowledge Management use computers more or less in the future?

Not likely. Knowledge will continue to be captured in the digital format.

9. In how many years will we be able to successfully manage tacit knowledge only through the use of technology?

I do not believe that it is possible to successfully capture tacit knowledge through technology.

No comments: