A Knowledge Managers' Checklist
  • View the organization as a human community capable of providing diverse meanings to information outputs generated by the technological systems, instead of the traditional emphasis on command and control.
  • De-emphasize the adherence to the "way things have always been done" so that such prevailing practices may be continuously assessed from multiple perspectives for their alignment with the dynamically changing external environment.
  • Encourage diverse viewpoints by avoiding premature consensus on issues that need deeper analysis of underlying assumptions. Often, viewpoints of persons with differing backgrounds and expertise can provide a much broader focus that is essential for completely grasping the essence of the core issues, particularly when the changing context demands a fresh look at what was yesterday defined as a "benchmark" or a "best practice."
  • Encourage greater proactive involvement of human imagination and creativity to facilitate greater internal diversity to match the variety and complexity of the wicked environment.
  • Give more explicit recognition to tacit knowledge and related human aspects, such as ideals, values, or emotions, for developing a richer conceptualization of knowledge management
  • Implement new, flexible technologies and systems that support and enable communities of practice, informal and semi-informal networks of internal employees and external individuals based on shared concerns and interests.
  • Make the organizational information base accessible to organization members who are closer to the action, while simultaneously ensuring that they have the skills and authority to execute decisive responses to changing conditions.

Source: Arie de Geus, The Living Company (Harvard Business School Press, 1997).

 Hari Srinivas - hsrinivas@gdrc.org
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