What Voting Needs: KM and Better Design

Voting on Tuesday was an unforgettable experience. We were welcomed at the door of the neighborhood elementary school by a cheerful poll worker who wished us a good morning, ushered us into the building and then carefully directed us to the school cafeteria where the voting booths were located. That was the last time we received clear... Continue Reading →

We All Need Training

Do you know how to wash your hands? Now, before you complain about bloggers who ask dumb questions, let me rephrase that question slightly: Do you know how to wash your hands properly? Chances are you don't. This issue arose when I found myself getting frustrated by restaurants that piously posted signs in restrooms instructing... Continue Reading →

Fixing the Weak Link

He thought they were going to have a quiet dinner, but she arrived apoplectic.  Some of the folks who worked with her had dropped the ball on a project that was routine and should have been foolproof. She thought they were going to have a quiet dinner, but he arrived apoplectic.  Someone had asked his... Continue Reading →

When Knowledge Management Saves Lives

If there are days when you doubt the value of knowledge management, take a closer look at Project ECHO:  it saves lives by sharing specialist knowledge from teaching hospitals with a wide network of primary care physicians in far-flung areas.  As a a result, the patients in those areas get the benefit of cutting edge... Continue Reading →

The Value of Checklists

Let's start with the premise that you're fantastic. In fact, you're well-trained, experienced and routinely exhibit good judgment. So, do you need a checklist? Ask a pilot or a surgeon.  Surgeon Atul Gawande did exactly that and learned some interesting -- and sobering -- things.  In a recent interview, he discussed his latest book, The... Continue Reading →

Dating a Beautiful Model

Some folks aspire to be as beautiful as a model, while other folks aspire to have a model on their arm. Lawyers, by contrast, aspire to have a collection of models. Model DOCUMENTS, that is.  And, as long as lawyers want model documents, law firm knowledge management personnel are going to try to find ways... Continue Reading →

Just Tell Me What Works!

Sometimes we just want to be told what to do. To be honest, we all have days when that seems far preferable to thinking for ourselves. Unfortunately, it's exactly this temptation that has led us to make a fetish of "best practices" in knowledge management.  However, we would do ourselves a great favor if we... Continue Reading →

The Challenges of Fragmented Knowledge

In Dave Snowden's view, "everything is fragmented." And, he thinks this is a good thing. But it has some challenging implications for knowledge management generally and law firm knowledge management specifically.Dave sets out his concept of fragmented knowledge in the May 2008 KM World Magazine in which he points to "the shift during the life... Continue Reading →

Best Practice vs Next Practice

Mark Gould's comment on my previous post (Not Quite) Best Practices pointed me to Derek Wenmoth's blog post on Best Practice vs Next Practice. Derek makes the interesting observation that while best practice is a snapshot of what we know has worked well in the past, next practice is an attempt to take that prior... Continue Reading →

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