This website covers knowledge management, personal effectiveness, theory of constraints, amongst other topics. Opinions expressed here are strictly those of the owner, Jack Vinson, and those of the commenters.

KM is human

Everyone has a different approach to their life and their work, so they have different needs from an approach to managing knowledge.

Moments after posting on KM Spectrum, I ran across a post by Ian Glendinning of Psyebertron that references a 2001 IBM article by Gunter Dueck: Views of knowledge are human views

Different people see knowledge management from different perspectives. Some people emphasize intellectual capital, some people always think about technology, whereas others put community building first. In this essay, I associate the different views of knowledge with personality types. In other words, a person's temperament determines that person's view of knowledge -- remarkable coincidence. Therefore, a person's answer to the question "What is knowledge?" is strongly related to the answer to "Who am I?" Hence, an enterprise should be careful when defining knowledge management for its use, lest its definition imply "who the employee should be."

Dueck describes the four forms of Greek knowledge, which describe another spectrum of approaches to KM. Here is the list that Dueck gets from Larry Prusak:

  • Episteme - abstract generalizations, basis and essence of sciences; scientific laws and principles
  • Techne - technical know-how, being able to get things done, manuals, communities of practice
  • Phronesis - practical wisdom, drawn from social practice
  • Metis - "It is what the flair, the knack and the bent of the successful politician is made of: a form of knowledge which is at the opposite end of metaphysics, with no quest of ideal, but a search for a practical end; an embodied, incarnate, substantial form of knowledge."

Dueck takes these definitions and maps them to the four Keirsey Temperaments. Most management discussions associated with Keirsey (or Myers-Briggs) is that management must realize that their people have different base personalities and that management programs need to account for these differences. And this is essentially what Dueck suggests must be considered when looking at knowledge management for your organization -- or as a consultant.

Carnegie: personal growth

Denham's KM Spectrum