Knowledge Sharing: Better Late Than Never

It looks like the Knowledge Sharing party has been in full swing for a while now. My last post reflected a growing conviction that I’ve had for some time: that facilitating knowledge sharing is a much more productive focus for an organization than attempting to manage knowledge. Well it turns out that I’m not the only one who has been thinking along those lines. In fact, a quick search revealed a variety of organizations and bloggers weighing in on the subject. Here’s a sampling:

* Knowledge Board’s summary of IBM’s Knowledge Sharing initiative
* Luis Suarez’ post: Into the Big Blue Yonder
* PWC’s Global Best Practices: Companies put a familiar face on knowledge sharing
* Dee’s post at Knowledge Management, Knowledge Sharing
* Library clips post: Knowledge Sharing in the New KM

According to Chris Cooper (knowledge sharing solutions leader at IBM Global Business Services), this change is a “philosophical repositioning.” He rightly observes that “[m]anagement suggests control: control of process and control of environment.” By contrast, knowledge sharing focuses on people, processes and tools to create “organic and unimposed sharing” leading to the efficient circulation of knowledge.

Now that a blue chip company has adopted knowledge sharing as its preferred alternative to knowledge management, the approach probably can’t be viewed as radical or cutting edge. So I guess I’m a little late to the party. (As are all of us who have been toiling in the vineyards these last few years trying to “manage” knowledge.) Oh well. Better late than never.

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