Corollaries of Knowledge sharing

Just read some more Steve Denning

Middle-management resists…

 Middle managers have often built their lives and careers on mastering the hierarchical pathways of organizations. They can feel threatened by the emergence of new non-hierarchical work flows which no longer require command-and-control management behaviors.  Communities of practice are indeed less orderly than hierarchies and it takes time for middle-managers to understand that maintaining order can advantageously be replaced by facilitating and cheer-leading knowledge sharing initiatives.

I love this. End Command and Control… 

What do you do with knowledge? Find it? Share it?

I've just read a really excellent – though lengthy – blog post from Mark Gould (@markgould13)  entitled What do we do with Knowledge?

This was bought to my attention by a tweet from @VMaryAbraham

Two bits stood out

 much of what we call KM is, in fact, merely manipulation of information. What social tools bring us … are really interesting ways of exposing people’s working processes… there is little better for learning and development of knowledge than close observation of people at work

This aligns quite strongly with some of the bits I've been mulling over relating to a Systems Thinking approach. Seddon, in Freedom from Command and Control says "The principles for the development of knowledge are: integrating measures with work, focusing on purpose, designing work in flow rather than function, and assuming knowledge is associated with work"

Put people in an environment when they are making their own life/job/process better – and the process rather than the people are measured… I wonder if they'll feel an incentive to share then?

what we think is information overload is actually filter failure. Where we rely solely on controlled vocabularies and classification systems, our capability to filter and search effectively runs out much sooner than it does when we can add personalised tags, comments, trackbacks, knowledge about the author from other sources, and so on. Whereas repositories usually strip context from the information they contain, blogs and other social tools bring their context with them. And, crucially, that context keeps growing.

and the context is not something the system brings… they are part of the conversation.

I commend the post and thank  Mark for writing it and Mary for sharing

30 years with an employer

Vanishingly rare these days, but in 31 days time – February 19, 2010 I will have worked for my employer for 30 years.

I work for BT, who followed British Telecom, who followed Post Office Telecommunications.

I've worked dealing with customer complaints; done customer research and analytics; managed phone book deliveries; worked in marketing; database analytics; internal communications; sales reporting and payplan; project management; IT systems support; high level design consultancy; indirect sales management; IT Service management; Process consultancy; Service design.

I'm now a solution designer, dabbling in Knowledge Management for interest – and learning about the Security space, aiming for CISSP.

It's a privilege to work for a company with the breadth we have – that continues to strive for excellence. I'm looking forward to the next 15 years.