Learning and KM: Separated at birth?


Two years ago, DevLearn and KM World took place simultaneously in downtown San Jose. I sensed that learning and knowledge management were converging and invited bloggers form both sides to get together at the Tidehouse to share viewpoints and guzzle beer. Adobe was kind enough to pick up the tab.


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KM World 2009 is next week. Looking through the program, I’m delighted to see that many of the sessions could easily play at DevLearn and vice-versa. I’ll be in Hope, Arkansas; Washington, DC; and Barcelona during KM World this year, so I’ll miss the show. If you’re into meta-learning, you should track what’s going on there.


Corporate learning and KM are both about getting the job done. I can’t tell where one stops and the other begins.

How different are these KM World talks from the topics we covered at DevLearn?

Andrew McAfee, Principal Research Scientist, Center for Digital Business – MIT Sloan School of Management and Author, Enterprise 2.0

Today, Enterprise 2.0 is more than a buzzword. Learn how it is transforming collaboration from the man who coined the term. A social media consumer, HBS professor, MIT research scientist, and author, McAfee focuses on how emergent social software platforms are benefiting enterprises, and how smart organizations and their leaders are making effective use of them to share knowledge, inspire innovation, and enable decision making. He shares strategies, stories, and real-world examples of successful enterprise collaboration using 2.0 tools. His insights will help you reset your enterprise to deal with turbulent times.

The mid-1990s saw a knowledge-sharing culture at E&Y that guided behaviors, activities, and goals and was viewed as a competitive advantage. Nearly 15 years later, the organization has grown and evolved, and while the knowledge-sharing culture still exists, it is time to energize the culture and take advantage of the intellectual capital of peers around the world to deliver the greatest value to clients.

An unexpected surprise has been the enthusiastic adoption of the wiki by even the least Web 2.0 savvy personnel (most are retired chiefs with more than 20 years’ Navy service). This presentation is both a case study and “how to” session including a look at tools and procedures necessary to develop an internal wiki, lessons learned, and tips for creating an effective, efficient, and inexpensive knowledge management solution.

Speakers paint a compelling vision of the future knowledge innovation highway. They go beyond the Gen X, and Y (Millennial) vision to look into the “virtuals” the first generation that has been socialized in virtual worlds from WebKinz, Club Penguin, Habbo Hotel, etc.—and the impacts this will have on the generational divides. Practical ways of influencing educational needs, as well as enterprise strategies, are highlighted as the solutions for knowledge worker evolution are considered.

People already share knowledge within the enterprise. If you want people to share more, or with different people (or both) you’re going to have to make it either really easy for them, or really important to them (or preferably both). Hear how microblogging is >being used in the enterprise and about other social media tools to connect people, enhance knowledge sharing, and enable collaboration.

How do you implement personal knowledge management (PKM) for yourself and your organization? What might a PKM program in your organization look like, and how can it leverage social networking tools? What are the keys to promoting PKM to leadership and to getting people to actually practice it? This panel shows how individuals and organizations are successfully implementing and gaining value from a PKM strategy that includes social networking tools.

Want to see the best in Enterprise 2.0 and how it organically facilitates collaboration and productivity? Nadel uses leading industry case studies to describe the evolution of intranets, best practices today, and what to expect tomorrow. He provides guidelines, both in design and process that enhance intranet and application usage, collaboration, and measurable effectiveness.

This session focuses on how a global organization applied a series of usability studies to modify the corporate intranet to integrate Web 2.0 applications without losing the proven value of the current design. It discusses how the user experience team developed and tested prototype designs and found value in iterative prototype remote lab testing. It shares the look and feel as well as the functionality of the EY intranet, three prototypes, overview of the EY usability methodology, lessons learned, and the results of a focus group study conducted on the final product.

People are the core of any organization and are successful when they have the tools that enable collaboration, sharing, and streamlined operations. This session describes intranet and social media strategies, tools and practices that have transformed the culture of one enterprise. Included are lots of tips and ideas for how you can apply these strategies, tools and practices within your own organization.

Johnson discusses enterprise social networking best practices and illustrates their engagement, usage and returns to the enterprise. Schultz and Leonard discuss how Premier achieves its mission, “to analyze and share knowledge nationwide to improve the health of communities,” by sharing clinical knowledge and experience across 1,700 not-for-profit member hospitals and health services experts.

Social technologies are transforming the way that people use the web and, with it, the way that companies engage with their customers and employees. Search is certainly being affected by the increasingly social nature of online activities. Impacting the socialization of search are the factoring in of the social graph and social activities into search results. Also, online people increasingly turn to their social networks when seeking information, recognizing that these people are likely to lead them to results.

Ramanathan discusses how the SAF is moving toward formalizing knowledge creation at the individual, team, and organizational levels; and with technology as an essential enabler, he shares how knowledge for operational performance is created in teams and reposited through content strategy to enable learning at the unit, individual, and team levels. He provides tips for key knowledge creation skills such as critical reflection, storytelling, and team learning.

Many government organizations are struggling to figure out how they can practically apply Web 2.0 to their existing knowledge management and collaboration initiatives. Within the government and military, Communities of Practice have proven to be a highly effective way to drive social learning for organizations. Using case studies and lessons learned, this session examines the challenges and details practical implementation of Web 2.0 that public and private sector organizations can apply as part of their organization’s Web 2.0 strategy.

This session provides a look at the key principles for success for communities in different organizations. Adkins discusses strategy development and implementation of learning and knowledge process engineering for driving successful communities. Weinstein discusses deployment of a fully functional, web-based knowledge management system (KMS) using Microsoft SharePoint He provides tips and lessons learned for creating a knowledge exchange designed to build a learning organization, enhance employee development, minimize organizational and geographic challenges, and streamline business operations.

As “social software” is finding its way into the enterprise, people are wondering what’s social about software and why it matters. These practitioners from leading organizations share their views on the realities of how interactions in social software platforms lead to productive work in the enterprise.

Social tools are changing our world and our enterprises. It is amazing how much and how quickly information is added by the community when it is relevant. How do organizations take advantage of this to enhance their information and knowledge flows, improve productivity, and streamline the enterprise? Vander Wal, who coined the term “folksonomy,” focuses on the huge untapped potential for social tools with discussions about making it easier for enterprise social tool adoption, tagging, getting tools to mesh, modifying Web 2.0 approaches for the enterprise, interface/interaction design for ease-of-use, sociality and encouragement of use.

Collaboration strategies are essential for driving results in the current global economic conditions with more outsourcing and distributed supply chains. This session looks at the current collaboration tools and software landscape, illustrates how the top technologies are being used in different types of organizations today, and shares what we can expect in the future.

Organizations that want to succeed in the global knowledge economy must transform into an enterprise of the future, one that continually learns and innovates. Our panel discusses maintaining strategic alignment across the enterprise, systematically capturing, sharing, and applying institutional knowledge while creating value on a sustained basis, and shares their tips and forecasts.

LearnTrends 09 starts this coming Tuesday. Our topic is convergence. It’s free and online. I wonder if many KM fans will join us.

Related entries:

Beer and blogs

DevLearn and KM World