Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Is KM...only for some?

On hearing my lecture on KM, a colleague of mine expressed his opinion that KM is perhaps for family businesses who want to be eternal and companies that are *truly* visionary. Not for the ones with the short-term focus. Not for ones whose CEOs are there to make a quick buck and make as much headline news as possible and disappear into another money-making racket before you can say ‘hey, look there’.  I couldn’t help but laugh for he took the words outa my mouth. So, is KM too philosophical and ideal a subject to be tried in the corporate world? Even if it works, will it be only a modest success? Not necessarily. Awareness of such real-life limitations only means that one ought to adopt as pragmatic an approach as possible and look for the quick wins and small-chunks of work that can have a significant effect and later slowly pave the way for a snow-balling effect to create the ideal world that KM proposes. :-)    


Gautam Ghosh said...

not really...

KM can give off short term goals too... personal productivity improvement or operational excellence and reduction of cycle times come to mind

The overall vision of KM transforming the organization into a innovative and collaborative organizations is a reality that is very elusive !

Nimmy said...

Hmm. I guess we need to define short-term here. Would you call 6 months short-term?

I do agree that something like productivity improvement in the short-term (less than one year if we want an institutionalized process)is certainly possible - backed up by some smart and practical thinking and a lot of motivation and 'incentives' for the people concerned, to move to a 'new' system!

What I am also talking about is that CEOs and the rest of their ilk are likely to analyze the returns based on investment - the RoI perspective, that is. So, would the quick-win/pilot project implementation be promising enough a return on the investment made? What's the benefit that one sees in the short run on a project involving enterprise wide integration of information and knowledge sources? Can the people in the organization be 'pushed' quickly enough to adopt and adapt to the new system? Doesn't this typically take a long time (more than a year or two if the leadership is effective) to happen? Sorry about the messy expression of thoughts here...pouring out my thoughts without sorting them out.... :}