The Knowledge Management (KM) Depot

The Knowledge Management (KM) Depot: June 2009

Monday, June 29, 2009

KM Planning vs KM Strategy

I have been working with several groups and organizations over the past few weeks looking to launch Knowledge Management (KM) programs. During my conversations one aspect of a KM program continues to come up... the KM plan v.s. the KM Strategy. Do we need both, what is the difference and what are they used for?

To start, a knowledge management plan involves a survey of corporate goals and a close examination of the process, and tools both traditional and technical, that are required for addressing the knowledge needs of the organization. The challenge is to establish what knowledge and knowledge management mean to your organization, understand what types of knowledge exist, what knowledge assets are going to be leveraged to improve performance and increase organizational innovation. In addition a KM Plan assists in the determination of software that fits the context of the overall plan and encourage people to share knowledge, information and data.

A KM strategy on the other hand entails a collective visioning as to how sharing knowledge can enhance organizational performance, and the reaching of a consensus among the senior management of the organization that the course of action involved in sharing knowledge will in fact be pursued. Implicit in such a process is a set of decisions about the particular variety of knowledge management that the organization intends to pursue. How the knowledge assets of the organization will be leveraged and the execution of the process and tools that will enable sharing and innovation to occur.

In short think of the KM Plan as the "what" and the KM Strategy as the "How" knowledge is leveraged.

I welcome your thoughts on this subject and to lively conversation...

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Friday, June 12, 2009

Knowledge Management (KM) Roles and Responsibilities

For anyone who is pursuing a career in knowledge management it is important to know what role (or position) you are best suited for. Depending on the organization (commercial, government, military, non-profit) there are different nuances to the KM job tile and duties. Some sample KM positions and there general descriptions are:

Chief Knowledge Officer manages the knowledge sharing process at the organizational level, leads efforts to move the organization to knowledge centricity; requires a dedication to KM principles, the ability to discuss the benefits of knowledge sharing and the vision to ensure that KM initiatives are adopted by the organization; ensures that the best, relevant information for the area of practice is accessible to all personnel and implements the knowledge sharing strategy in alignment with corporate guidelines; champions cross-organizational communities of practice, forms relationship with HR, IT, librarian, organizational learning; establishes incentive programs for knowledge sharing and re-use; fosters cultural change; defines roles, skill-set and opportunities for knowledge workers and facilitates training and education of knowledge workers.

Knowledge Engineer is involved in turning KM ideas into workable solutions by engineering appropriate knowledge sharing internet/intranet sites, rules based systems, portals, databases, etc. Requires intimate knowledge of the systems, architectures, technologies, standards and protocols for KM. Ensures performance of the knowledge-centric organization is optimized through utilization of KM tools and systems thinking applications.

Knowledge Manager works with the Chief Knowledge Officer to implement KM initiatives; manages KM efforts; requires looking across KM processes to capture tacit and explicit knowledge and often involves balancing technology, information, processes and individual and organizational learning within a culture of shared values. Creates ways to maintain a sustainable competitive advantage.

Knowledge Process Manager focuses on the organizations processes of KM and content integration; manages the efforts of the Knowledge Transfer Engineer, Knowledge Research Engineer, and Knowledge Life-Cycle Engineer. Develops process models for optimal organizational effectiveness.

For additional information on KM positions access the following links:

In order to prepare yourself for one of these exceptional positions the first step is to seek out educational opportunities. You can contact your local universities and colleges as well as look online to organizations that provide training and certification. The following are some links to organizations proving these educational opportunities:

Walden University:
Knowledge Management Institute:
eKnowledge Center:
George Washington University:
Knowledge Systems Institute:
Rutgers University:,com_courses/task,view/sch,17/cur,610/num,574/Itemid,54/
Dominican University:

I look forward to everyone's comments!

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