Engaging with Missing Knowledge Management Capabilities
Successful knowledge management in a competitive business environment requires an organization to possess certain capabilities. In particular, the organization must be able to create, transfer, store, retrieve, and apply knowledge. Traditionally, an organization can claim capability in knowledge management if it can execute these activities with rigor, clarity, effectiveness, and efficiency. Any book about knowledge management — including this one — will devote a great deal of time to discussing topics associated with the five major capabilities, and this devotion is entirely justified. Creating knowledge is a significant aspect of any knowledge management program. If an organization cannot create knowledge by examining data and pieces of information and by harvesting information from the expertise of its agents, there will be nothing to manage. Once the knowledge is created, the next logical steps are to transfer, store, and retrieve it. Without these three components, it will be difficult for an organization to ensure knowledge generated in one sector of the organization or at a single, unique time is transferred to another sector and available for future use. It will also be difficult for the organization to ensure that agents who require particular knowledge are able to retrieve and apply it efficiently and effectively. Unless an organization can demonstrate competency in these five activities, its knowledge management program is incomplete and likely flawed. Often an organization excels at one activity and is hopeless in another. For example, if an organization has a sophisticated storage mechanism in place, but fails to generate or create knowledge, the storage mechanism is useless — they will have no knowledge to store! Such imbalance among the five capabilities will cause serious problems for any organization in the future.
KeywordsKnowledge Management Tacit Knowledge Knowledge Worker Organizational Knowledge Knowledge Object
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