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When an icebreaker isn’t just an icebreaker

I was invited to present a workshop as a guest speaker for a team off-site, recently. It was an express introduction to knowledge management and the group I presented to were enthusiastic about knowledge, even though they hadn’t yet implemented any KM programs. This particular group of people are managers in different roles across …

How to interview your experts

Today’s post comes from Michael Domanski and Sean Murphy. Michael is a software developer and Sean is an entrepreneur with a history of business development and customer support. Together, they are bringing tools for knowledge management to small teams. Learn more about Knowledge Flow.

What’s the most unnerving thought when interviewing a high profile expert?
Just imagine how depressed you would be after securing an interview with a subject matter expert and then conducting an interview that is a mix of stuttering and banal questions. I had tons of angst myself when I started conducting interviews. It’s not easy to interview an expert, mainly
because of the depth of their knowledge. It gets even harder when you realize just how precious their time is. To make my experience even more stressful, I knew at some point some of those people may become my
customers. Thus, I not only needed information, …

7 Ways Self-service is like a ShamWow

Like late-night TV, the mind can go from the sublime to the ridiculous when it’s dark and quiet. And so here I am with 7 reasons why self-service forums are like a ShamWow.

1. ShamWow’s in your face around the clock

Just like those ads, self-service forums can run around the clock. And if you have …

Types of knowledge

I’ve always found the academic discussions that nitpick over the definitions of tacit and implicit knowledge to be irritating, but just for the record, here’s what they mean:

Tacit – this is the knowledge in our heads that is made up from experience and personal contexts. It’s not written down and is hard to articulate. …

Metrics and Knowledge Management

I’ve been asked recently about metrics in knowledge management. Specifically, what are the things I like to measure. I do have a favourite. Diving down into the read count per topic or category and then looking further into what specific issues are being accessed most often can uncover potential improvements to products or services. Layers of complexity could be removed by redesigning the product or service for more intuitive use. Maybe the instructional documentation could be made clearer. Analysing metrics like these can help us improve our offering in a way that ultimately reduces the amount of support we need to provide. No wonder that’s my favourite.

Onboarding in the Flexible Working Environment

I read an interesting post recently, by James Dellow, about the relationship of our physical work environments and our work habits. He points out that the availability of wifi has enabled the concept of activity based working (ABW). This is where an organisation provides no permanent desks for employees, but rather allows people to sit in project-based groups. The work environment is far more fluid and some organisations even provide fewer desks than staff, encouraging them to work from home. On the surface, that sounds pretty great. The business saves money, and the employees have the freedoms and flexibility they’ve been wishing for.

How to Choose and Use Business Software

I don’t really like the term “business software”. I’m really talking about service desk tools and knowledge management products, but there isn’t an appropriate collective noun for those specific things so I’ll just lump it all in with MYOB. Do you have a preferred collective noun? Leave it in the comments.

There’s a whole slew of software options out there for getting your job done. Here are some tips to help you choose what might be right for you.

We have to talk about legacy issues

I put an informal poll out into the field, recently—that is, to my Twitter and Facebook followers—asking what the biggest issues are for knowledge management in their workplace.

Your Intranet is a Living Thing

Your intranet is a constantly evolving thing. It’s not something that you can set and forget. As your business and processes change, the information on your intranet will most likely need updating to reflect those changes. Ongoing updates to information and functionality keep it a relevant and effective tool in your organisation.
There are a few things you can do to keep your intranet alive and well.