Collecting, connecting, creating
As Elisabeth Goodman mentioned in her recent blog – Umbrella 2013, a view from a CILIP trainer – there are some common themes in Information and Knowledge management in terms of collecting information and knowledge in a form that can be made accessible to others, and then connecting people to these assets, and to each other to really make that information and knowledge flow.
The ultimate goal of these activities is of course to enable us to create ideas and opportunities that will lead to incremental improvements in what we do, or to break-through innovations.
We thought this would be a great theme for our summer newsletter as summer holidays are traditionally a time to collect new experiences or to simply relax and pick up pebbles on the beach; to connect with friends and family or our own inner thoughts; and to create new energy and ideas for the coming months.
A lot of RiverRhee Consulting’s work also centres around these 3 Cs: we help teams to collect facts, perceptions and insights relating to what they do; to reflect and connect with these insights and with each other; and to then create and implement improvements to their work as a team.
Any effective initiative makes use of sound facts and data. Information and Library professionals have a vital role to play in helping to make the wealth of in-house and external information more accessible to individuals within an organisation.
We are now all ‘knowledge workers’, and so tapping into what we already know should be a prerequisite for anything that we undertake. It is something that the APM and Project Managers continue to be passionate about in advocating the collection and sharing of ‘lessons learned’ before, during and at the end of any project.
Operational teams can also benefit from collecting facts and data on their work, and this is something that we support through the use of team ‘temperature checks’ or diagnostics, and as part of the Lean Sigma ‘Measure’ phase as input for analysis and discussion in team workshops.
Elisabeth Goodman has been doing one-to-one consultations using the MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator) psychometric tool to help people gain a deeper understanding of their strengths and of how they can use these insights in both their personal development and in their interactions with others. This makes MBTI a powerful tool for team building activities – and Elisabeth will also be using this in her work with a client in September.
One of the four dichotomies in MBTI describes where we prefer to focus and draw on our energy. In a sense this is also about how we prefer to connect: outwardly in interaction with others, or inwardly through quiet reflection. (Of course, as with the other dichotomies, many of us will like a mixture of both.)
Information and Knowledge Management resources and processes also provide the means for connecting with hardcopy or electronic resources, and for connecting with other people either individually or as part of a community. Elisabeth’s latest article in her and John Riddell’s ‘Knowledge Management Surgery’ explores how understanding the MBTI personality profiles could help with many aspects of Knowledge Management.
NLP is also a powerful tool that we have been using to foster personal understanding and for team building. Lorraine Warne and Elisabeth are running a workshop in Cambridge on the 24th July Increasing your Personal Effectiveness, which will give delegates an opportunity to explore both of these techniques alongside each other.
This brings us back to the last of our 3 Cs that we mentioned in our introduction. If we have our facts and data, our experiences, our insights, and reflect on them individually or with others, we can start to identify new ways of doing things. We can come up with new products, services, improvements to our processes, and ways to achieve a high performing team. We can be in the flow, enjoy what we do and achieve great things!
Speaking of which, John and Elisabeth have completed the body of our book – Knowledge Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry – and are now reviewing the content with contributors. We anticipate getting the final product to our publisher, Gower, by then end of the year, 10+ months ahead of our delivery date…
If you’d like to find out more
Do get in touch if you’d like to find out more about RiverRhee Consulting, our range of off-site and in-house workshops, and how we can help you to enhance team effectiveness and create an exceptional team. See the RiverRhee Consulting website or e-mail the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.