Just read a great post by Carol Rozwell from Gartner on challenges in the coming “sea change” in KM (or “Knowledge Management”) enabled by Social Media. It’s about the transformation in how we approach collaboration and innovation in the work place. She raises concerns that many are still trapped in the old 1990’s KM paradigm. As with any change, each of us must see the need for it, understand it, and accept it.
I couldn’t agree with her concerns more, and responded to her blog with my thoughts on KM’s evolution.
It is very encouraging to see more and more practitioners (organizations, companies, thought leaders, consultants) coming to the same conclusions:
Old KM often didn’t work.
New KM is about connecting people and driving engagement. It’s not about collecting artifacts anymore. We are social and innovation engineers, not archeologists.
KM has alot to do with driving innovation.
KM has everything to do with collaboration, hence the strong links with Social Media.
Please post your comments here. Would love to know what you’re thinking. Meantime, thanks again Carol for a great blog post. Glad to know Gartner is engaging on this. Frankly, we need all the help we can get.
Chris, KM is so broad and its principles are so powerful. Sounds great, yet those features are its undoing. Each time an element of KM gains traction, it splits off into its own discipline.
The people left behind after a split are largely the purists, the academics, and the change averse.
Luckily, KM is so appealing as a concept that there are always new recruits. Unfortunately, new recruits are often the first ones to take a new fork.
I don’t have any data on this, but in my 10 years of KM practice/study, this is what I have observed. Personally, I have been down the portal split, the CoP split, and for the last 6 years the SM split. I am also dabbling with the multimedia split.
I return to KM because I know there will be more awesomeness that comes from it. However, many others do not return.
Thanks for the comment on this. I think all of us doing work in the KM space have become frustrated to varying degrees, for a variety of reasons. Some I summarized here. Some were reviewed in the Prusak/Snowden video from 2008 linked in this KM thread, and of course, some similar thinking appeared in the Gartner piece cited above.
I definitely think we can start getting at a fresh path forward for KM in the #KMers chat. Very glad you’ve started that, and I hope to become a more active contributor.
Agree w/ all your branch stories except, perhaps, the SM one. KM-SM may be an entire new tree. I’m thinking the business world has finally caught up with the promise of KM, in part due to the richness and collaborative power of SM. Has technology/IT caught up? Not until Enterprise 2.0 gets some traction. And that remains held up by silo-thinking and the challenge of culture change.
Much work ahead.
If any of this becomes a topic at #KMers, I’ll be there for certain. Just let me know when.
Thanks again for the insights ..