Knowledge Management & Organizational Change

Organizational Change...and Resistance...Happens.

Whoa. That was my first thought when I read a blog post this morning. It started with receiving a comment from someone about one of my own posts, which lead me to that person’s blog, which in turn lead me to another blog. And that’s where I got the whoa. I’m not even going to point out which blog it was, just don’t think that it is really that worth it. But it does give me enough of a whoa feeling that I’m moved to post a bit about how organizational change impacts knowledge management (or is it how knowledge management impacts organizational change?). But the whoa statement was: “Resistance to change is a myth. There is no such thing.” And that was followed by “Organizations are not machines. Organizations are systems. And there is no resistance in a system.”

Again. Whoa. The bad news is that the author of that blog post is a management consultant. The good news is that at least the author isn’t involved in knowledge management. But clearly the author has a very limited understanding of systems theory, systems thinking, and organizational change.

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Canaries of the Knowledge Age

Knowledge Canary in the Innovation Coal Mine

Dave Pollard’s blog “how to save the world” has a great article on how Knowledge drives Innovation. And in that Dave states that he believes that Knowledge and Innovation “are inseparable.”

And I have to say that this has long been my belief. And I completely agree with Dave’s suggestion that “Knowledge and imagination are the primary drivers of innovation in organizations.” I think that goes a long way to explain why there is currently such an emphasis being placed on increasing or driving innovations — from design firms to service firms to manufacturers…where there is a lack of knowledge, imagination and creativity there will probably be a lack of real innovation. So I think that it is a bit ironic that this increased emphasis is ongoing because at least in part, many of these same organizations have failed to capitalize on the value of organizational knowledge and all that goes with that — leaving them in the position of having to “frantically run about” looking for innovation in every dark corner.

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Knowledge Management is Easy…If….

KM is Easy...If....

Today’s post was inspired by Jack Vinson who in his blog over the weekend passed along an observation made by another KM’er:

“A KM leader admits that the hardest part of knowledge management is making the change happen amongst people. But, since that is so difficult, they didn’t do that. Instead, they spent millions on a fancy IT system.”

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