Building a Knowledge Sharing Company

There will be increasing realization that sustainable organizational competence depends upon the organization’s capacity for creating new knowledge through an ongoing and continuous process of learning and unlearning.The most valuable assets of the twenty-first-century company are its knowledge and knowledge workers. Peter DruckerIn an economy where the only certainty is uncertainty, the one sure source of lasting advantage is knowledge. Ikujiro NonakaFirst, KM is increasingly important because of the shift from a predictable world paradigm to one governed by discontinuous change. Second, it is essential for organizational survival in the long run, given that knowledge creation is the core competence of any organization. This knowledge may relate — among other issues — to new products or services, to new product/service definitions, to new organization/industry definitions, or to new channels of distributions. Third, it is not a separate function characterized by a separate KM department or a KM process but is embedded into all organization’s business processes. Fourth, latest advances of information technology can facilitate the processes such as channeling, gathering, or dissemination of information, however, the final burden is on the humans to translate this information into actionable knowledge depending on an acute understanding of their business context. Having the best-of-breed technologies doesn’t necessarily ensure creativity and innovation that is necessary for organizational competence. Effective utilization of technology is necessary — synchronized with effective utilization of the creative and innovative capacity of the human components. In this view, KM is not limited to collecting information from various domain experts and creating databases supported by organizational intranets. Nor is it defined in terms of determining the individual knowledge needs of every employee and then trying to parcel out quotas of knowledge that are considered relevant to each employee’s needs. Various labels such as knowledge capital, knowledge assets, intangible assets, intellectual capital, and so on refer to the organizational wealth of knowledge.