Gurteen Knowledge Letter: Issue 157 - July 2013


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Gurteen Knowledge Letter: Issue 157 - July 2013


  1. Introduction to the July 2013 Knowledge Letter
  2. KM Doctoral Dissertations: free to view online
  3. KM UK 2013: Knowledge Cafe: Should we be using rewards and recognition to motivate knowledge sharing?
  4. Drum Struck at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival
  5. Nancy Dixon and I are looking for stories
  6. What role does conversation play in the work you do?
  7. The 3 Davids of KM: Knowledge Management Workshops
  8. Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: July 2013
  9. Upcoming Events
  10. Subscribing and Unsubscribing
  11. The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

Introduction to the July 2013 Knowledge Letter

I have just been following the Tweets from the last day of KM Australia this morning and discovered this compilation of material from the event collated by Eventifier.

Seems Eventifier collates all event related contents from various social media streams like Twitter, Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, Flickr, Slideshare and more. Its a great idea to pull all this stuff into one central archive. I hope it catches on.

I am looking forward to hearing how the conversatonal format worked this year and I am looking forward to chairing the event next year. Sydney is one of my favorite cities.

KM Doctoral Dissertations: free to view online

Academic Conferences and Publishing International have started to publish a number of Doctoral Dissertations online.

This includes several KM Dissertations. You can view them online or order a paper copy.

KM UK 2013: Knowledge Cafe: Should we be using rewards and recognition to motivate knowledge sharing?

At the end of the first day of KM UK recently I ran a Knowledge Cafe but with a difference. When it came to setting the theme and posing the question I used a short video compilation that I had put together using the YouTube Video Editor. Here is the video.

It starts with a series of short clips that I used to seed the conversation. Clips from Alfie Kohn, Dan Pink, The Office and myself.

Next I posed the question "Should we be using rewards and recognition to motivate knowledge sharing?"

The video then includes a clip of the small group conversations in the Cafe itself, followed by some comments by Paul Corney (the conference chair) and interviews with Mark Field and Florence Kiff, two of the conference participants.

It gives a good feel for the Cafe concept and the event on the day but note that the tables were far too large for a good conversation as many of them had 6, 7 or 8 people, some even more. The Cafe works best with people sitting in groups of 3, 4 or 5 in touching distance of each other.

I got some good feedback - here is the complete unabridged list :
  • Thought-provoking, useful.
  • Good time for conversation. Great use of video.
  • Very energizing. We need more of these. Would have preferred more talking.
  • At last. A chance to talk and listen. Was there any consensus/answer?
  • Good refresher in conference to have group discussion. Have more of these break-outs.
  • Knowledge café always very powerful and interactive.
  • Brilliant as usual.
  • Great debate on reward and motivation.
  • Very interesting session and good finish to the day (but too long!)
  • Enjoyed the knowledge of café experience.
  • Perhaps the example was a little out of date but achieved its purpose of getting people to exchange ideas and a refreshing change to move around. Thought-provoking, useful.

Drum Struck at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

You may remember that at the ICKM Conference in Joburg last year I ran a combined Knowledge Cafe/Drum Cafe event to open the conference with Warren Lieberman who became a good new friend.

As I said at the time "Knowledge Cafes bring people together to connect and to have conversations while Drum Cafes connect and energise people through Interactive Drumming. A wonderful combination."

Well, if you will be at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 1 - 26 Aug then get along to Drum Struck

There is a drum on every seat for the audience to play along with the world's finest drummers, dancers and singers.

Learn to play an African drum, and meet the Ubuntu Queen.

This show is guaranteed to enchant, enthral, lift your spirits and send you off on a high.

I know from experience you will have an amazing time.

This video playlist captures the energy and engagement in the room at ICKM 2012. It was a great way to start a conference.

Nancy Dixon and I are looking for stories

Nancy Dixon and I are both interested in the role conversation pays in business and we are looking for stories. Nancy is specifically looking for stories like this one that she recently posted in her blog Collective Sensemaking: How One Organization uses the Oscillation Principle. This is an inspiring story of an organisation that has applied what Nancy calls the "Oscillation Principle".

In global organizations or teams, effective performance outcomes are associated with the rhythmic oscillation between lengthy periods of mediated interaction interspersed with short intense periods of face-to-face collective sensemaking.

The deep rhythm of oscillation between face-to-face meetings for collective sensemaking and virtual work, addresses one of the greatest deficits of a virtual work force, that is, one part of the organization takes action without reference to how that action may impact other parts of the organization or impact the whole.

Through collective sensemaking all perspectives on a topic are given voice so that an understanding of the whole emerges as well as clarity about the relationship between the parts.

In such conversations organizational members often discover assets of which they were unaware.

Of equal importance, the periods of collective sensemaking renew the trust and relationships which are a precondition for the collaboration and information exchange that are limited to mediated interaction when organizational members are again at a distance.

Credit: The Oscillation Principle by Nancy Dixon
Many organisations may be doing this but not have a label for it. If your organisation is doing anything like this or if you know of one that is or if you know of articles or blog posts that describe this sort of organising principle or anything a little like it then we would be interested to know.

My interest is broader, I am looking for stories of organisations that have taken the role of "conversation" seriously in their business and are deliberately using it to share perspectives, to make better sense of their environment, to build relationships, make better decisions and to innovate.

If you can help get in touch with me and I will connect you with Nancy.

What role does conversation play in the work you do?

I recently emailed an old friend whom I had not seen for a long time and who works in the knowledge transfer field to catch up. In my email I asked her:

"What sort of role does conversation play in the work you do?"

To which she replied:

"What a bizarre question, what role do conversations play? Interesting space you are operating in these days!"

and in return I responded:

"Maybe I should ask more such questions of people ... not looking for an answer but to provoke thought but of course I have no control over what thoughts I provoke in people's minds - it could just be ridicule LOL. What I had in mind - was more "what role does conversation play in transferring knowledge in what you do" or is it just the explicit stuff that you deal in?

She hasn't replied to me yet so I can't speak for her but it occurs to me that many people do not recognise conversation as a "knowledge transfer" tool.

But I do like the idea of asking more people the question "What role does conversation play in your work?". Is it so bizarre a question? What role does it play in yours?

The 3 Davids of KM: Knowledge Management Workshops

On the evenings of 24th and 26th September, TallyFox is hosting a Knowledge Management Workshop and networking reception at BAFTA in London.

And then again on the afternoon of 9th October they are hosting another in Frankfurt.

There will be three speakers with whom I hope you are familiar - David Snowden, David Griffiths and myself - "the three David's of KM". Interestingly, all three of us are Welsh as well.

This a great opportunity to hear our thoughts about KM and to have some interesting conversations.

You will find more details here. The workshops are free.

Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: July 2013

Here are what I consider some of my more interesting Tweets for June to July 2013. Take a look, if you are not a Tweeter, you will get a good idea of how I use it by browsing the list of micro-posts.

  • 10 KM Implementation approaches from @ChrisCollison http://bit.ly/12JfMwY #KM

  • The Art of Knowledge Exchange http://bit.ly/12E1wWr /a great guide from the World Bank #KM

  • Academic Conferences and Publishing Int'l: 4 KM doctoral dissertations here http://bit.ly/13ebxxT #KM

  • Leading for the future: a model from the British Army http://bit.ly/1dwWoJL #KM

  • Creating Conversational Trust http://bit.ly/135tD59 #GurteenTalk #TalkInc

  • Language is our genes talking: How language transformed humanity http://bit.ly/135vKWw #GurteenTalk /fascinating TEDTalk

  • Group Discussion: Interactive Dialogue or Serial Monologue? The Influence of Group Size http://bit.ly/12sRagJ #GurteenTalk

  • Creating Shared Meaning: There is a profound difference between information and meaning #GurteenTalk

  • The main problem with KM systems is that they do not copy how real people think @Hjarche http://bit.ly/12qWEUr #KM

  • For individuals, the core skill is critical thinking, or questioning all assumptions, including one's own http://bit.ly/155W3ub #KM

If you like the Tweets then subscribe to my Tweet stream.

Upcoming Events

Here are some of the major KM events taking place around the world in the coming months and ones in which I am actively involved. You will find a full list on my website where you can also subscribe to both regional e-mail alerts and RSS feeds which will keep you informed of new and upcoming events.

Resilient Knowledge Management Practice (Prof. Development Certificate)
12 - 16 Aug 2013, Slough, United Kingdom

Evolving Corporate Universities (ECU) Forum -- Johannesburg 2013
04 - 05 Sep 2013, Johannesburg, South Africa

i-know 2013
04 - 06 Sep 2013, Graz, Austria

14th European Conference on Knowledge Management
05 - 06 Sep 2013, Kaunas, Lithuania

KM Singapore 2013
02 - 04 Oct 2013, Singapore City, Singapore

International Conference on Knowledge Economy icke2013
28 - 30 Oct 2013, Cape Town, South Africa

Organisational Learning Conference (OLC MENA 2013)
30 - 31 Oct 2013, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
I will be running a Knowledge Cafe at this event.

The 8th International Conference on Knowledge Management (ICKM 2013)
01 - 02 Nov 2013, Montréal, Canada

9th Knowledge Globalization Conference
01 - 02 Nov 2013, Boston, United States

KMWorld 2013
06 - 08 Nov 2013, Washington DC, United States

KM Asia 2013
12 - 14 Nov 2013, Singapore, Singapore

Subscribing and Unsubscribing

You may subscribe to this newsletter on my website. Or if you no longer wish to receive this newsletter or if you wish to modify your e-mail address or make other changes to your membership profile then please go to this page on my website.

The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

The Gurteen Knowledge-Letter is a free monthly e-mail based KM newsletter for knowledge workers. Its purpose is to help you better manage your knowledge and to stimulate thought and interest in such subjects as Knowledge Management, Learning, Creativity and the effective use of Internet technology. Archive copies are held on-line where you can register to receive the newsletter.

It is sponsored by the Henley Forum of the Henley Business School, Oxfordshire, England.

You may copy, reprint or forward all or part of this newsletter to friends, colleagues or customers, so long as any use is not for resale or profit and I am attributed. And if you have any queries please contact me.

Gurteen Knowledge
Fleet, United Kingdom

If you are interested in Knowledge Management, the Knowledge Café or the role of conversation in organizational life then you my be interested in this online book I am writing on Conversational Leadership
David Gurteen

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