I think this post, by Doug, is lovely! It’s a bit lengthy but worth the read. It brought back memories of some of those good old days when I was engaged in initiating KM in the organizations that I’ve worked with. Full of passionate arguments about why KM is more about people, culture, HR policies et al. The post has got a very prominent HR flavour to it making it good for not just KM but HR consumption as well. Here are some statements and view-points/arguments I fell in love with:
And where there is no involvement, there may be compliance - but not commitment.
But even the best of these collaborative organizations are limited in their ability to adequately measure one’s ”knowledge contribution”. Organizations will generally get what they measure, but are they measuring what’s meaningful? Flawed performance management systems can’t really measure the value of a suggestion or the power of an idea.
If HR departments aren’t clear on how to measure, recognize and reward one’s contribution, can we really expect knowledge workers to fully participate?
The value proposition for the knowledge worker must then change to say, “It’s not what you know, but what you share that counts.”
Command and control management practices have extolled a high human cost on knowledge workers. And we must realize that technology can - and must -be an enabler, but it is not a panacea. To be effective, our systems and tools must be simple, effective and integrated with the knowledge worker’s work activities. Our attitudes towards each other must also change. We must believe we can learn from each other, and respect each person’s unique gifts and contributions.
Knowledge management then is creating a culture of high trust where ideas can be shared, and feedback is encouraged. It’s also recognizing that personal ideas and suggestions aren’t marketable all by themselves. These opinions must be scrutinized, challenged and adapted so that the collective knowledge that results can lead to innovation, process improvement and profits.