Wednesday, October 09, 2002

Knowledge is Power!
I often get asked to demonstrate the value of KM, or show the return on investment. Tools like Benefit Trees are quite handy in this respect - they allow you to construct the response as a string of impacts from intangible things like 'improved customer understanding' to more traditional territory like 'increased customer retention rate'. It allows more constructive discussion around, say, the case for transferring knowledge between different parts of the organization. This is equally powerful in reverse - e.g. when people tell me I should be giving away my knowledge to others. Like hell I will - "What, you want me to write my own resignation letter too?" I ask. Oddly, these same tree-huggin' hippy KM types don't understand the source of my resistance and think I need culture change. Tsk. I find it helps to run them through the 'Knowledge Sharing Chain':

* share your knowledge
-> credit to somebody else
-> passed over for promotion
-> depression
-> alcoholism
-> marital breakdown
-> destitution
-> die a bum

Inspired by : Innervation by Guy Browning the only management book you can talk about at parties.

Sunday, October 06, 2002

Anybody planning to attend KM Europe 2002 ? I expect to go down for a day, see the free talks, check out some of the vendor stuff. If you're a Blogger it'd be nice to put a face to you - get in touch [if you're not a spam crawler you'll know what to do with the AT]

While I'm at it, anyone interested in Personal Knowledge Management may want to look at:
Book review: Know your value?

When I started this Blog, I didn't believe anybody out there read them, so challenged people to get in touch. In fact a number of people have done just that - notably all of them bloggers themselves. However, nobody bit on the 'KM for New Ventures' angle. Pity, as I'm sure much of it translates for project teams, autonomous departments or fast-growing SMEs. An article of mine came out this month - hope it'll whet your appetites more on this:
Knowledge management for new ventures. Comments very welcome.

Tuesday, October 01, 2002

Air Traffic Control Couldn't resist linking to this The Social Life of Paper (though its Stephen Dulaney that brought it to my attention Digital Dashboards). Gladwell talks about the paradox of air-traffic control using bits of paper all the time. It reminded me of some cognitive psychologists doing research on just this area - situated cognition they called it. They spent weeks observing ATC operators and began to build up a picture of what they did. But one thing puzzled them - ocassionally the controller would ask the pilot to make an unexpected change in flight path. "Why", they asked, "did the pilot need to divert his course?". "Well", explained the controllers "When 2 planes are stacked up at different altitudes we can't read their labels on the screen, so we make the fly apart to reveal the code underneath".

Permalinks added by popular demand. Messy business.