• 08:19:29 pm on November 2, 2009 | 0

    It’s no fun to state things in negatives, but sometimes it’s important to identify common patterns and issues, so we don’t keep doing the wrong things over and over.  It’s also quite easy to enter into a comfortable state of denial, where things are because “that’s always they way they’ve been”.

    In an effort to help identify areas that might actually be hurting you that you’re not aware of, or not aware you can CHANGE, I present to you my KM ‘Letterman List’ for November.  KM DOESN’T WORK BECAUSE:

    10. The knowledge management tool just sort of sits there – nobody’s really minding it, it’s kind of like bad plumbing that everybody puts up with.

    9. Nobody really measures how well content is meeting the needs of the internal and/or external users.There’s no top-line outcome of success from either the internal KB or external self-help that guides activity.

    8. Nobody asked the CSR’s how THEY search, what content THEY use, and how THEY want their tool organized.

    7. You dumped all your stuff into your new knowledge base, and it’s no easier to find than before.

    6. The toolset doesn’t work – it’s too slow, inconsistent, up and down, behaves oddly, integrates poorly, and/or doesn’t bring back decent results.

    5.  The content being used is too long, complex, jargon-filled or inaccurate:  it doesn’t provide quick, easy access to the best information the user requests.

    4.  The organization isn’t really staffed around KM – activity is sporatic and hit/miss towards keeping the knowledge base current and relevant.

    3.  There’s nobody holding the products, engineering, marketing and/or sales groups responsible for keeping their information accurate, up to date and focused on support-relevant topics. People across the organization don’t buy into the need for content and tagging standards – they write what they want, how they want.

    2.  Nobody’s evangelizing, coaching, educating the organization about the value of KM, how to best use the tools at hand, what needs improvement, and helping drive effective continuous adoption across centers, locales and lines of business.

    1.  There’s no objective, capability or outcome from doing KM that resides on a key executive’s top ‘to do list’, as a key enabler for the business as a whole.  Such objectives would spark and demand leadership, action and accountability across the organization to stay focused on achieving better knowledge development and delivery in the midst of all other priorities, initiatives and crises.

    Does #1 sound simple?  Ok – quickly – name the top outcome from KM your executive expects, and what objectives they are monitoring and driving to achieve it…

    If that’s clear and easy to identify, the chances are you’re getting help addressing the other 9 issues.  If you’re still waiting, make a few up and go have a chat with them!

    If you answered yes to any more than 2 of these you probably need to ask – WHO is driving your KM bus?

    Happy November,

    John Chmaj
    “The Knowledge Advocate”



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