Wednesday, September 17, 2008

To "KM2.0"

There was a lot of discussion some time back about the assertion that KM is dead ... Luis wrote about it ... and the assertion that KM is moving more towards conversation from documentation. I have added to the words about conversation ... But all this conversation about conversation doesnt answer one question ... a question i am thinking about.

Lets take an organization which is yet to reach the "KM1.0" stage ... they dont have a centralized document repository ... they have siloes where information is stored, and retrieval of this information is largely a manual activity, because a lot of it is stored in team file-servers etc. Question is, should this organization move straight to a "KM2.0" scenario?

One way to look at this would be to say ... sure! This would make sense in theory, given the fact that all knowledge is directly or indirectly tacit. So, the logic here would be that if we ca get people together, either into communities, or into an internal blogosphere, we can actually get people to share information more seamlessly even without resorting to a centralized repository.

Having said this, would this work in practice? I dont know, but i tend to believe, it wouldnt. To begin with, information which is not in a repository tends to be difficult to identify. Much more so than something which can be attached to a somewhat defined taxonomy (whether a regular taxonomy or folksonomy ... i am including both in this). Second, and more important, a repository could be an important step towards building a mindset of sharing ... where it is considered a nice thing to share documents with others, leading to a more ready acceptance of some of the social tools.

Any thoughts? Please do write in, to let me know what you think should be the approach here. Of course, there are pros and cons of both approaches, and would like to hear from you, what you feel are some of each.


Nimmy said...

Ooooh!! What a coincidence. This is something that's been on my mind as the recent past! Lots of organizations don't seem to buy the idea of a common repository! And my key point was very much what you have mentioned here - having a common repository urges employees to get into the sharing (and out of the silo) mentality. A common repository means common taxonomy...a common way of identifying and locating artifacts. A common repository means a visually rich big picture that tells you about all sorts of possibilities....not one that is carved out of a narrow search term!! A common repository means a process of consolidation and integration. A common repository means an upfront identification of overlaps and differences! :-)

Atul said...

you said it, Nimmy. Today, there are tools where you can actually share documents right off your harddisk ... so, as such, the repository may not be technically a necessity, but rather, as a means to get over the silo mentality.

Anonymous said...

KM Gurus, I fully agree with a common repository concept for all KM contributions and not only that I think, we need to have specially designed search engines that can quickly search the content we are looking for.... other than KM contribution, this is another very very important area for Total KM. I found another good article on KM Contribution @
Have a look.

Anonymous said...

Hi, guantanamera121212