A great deal of money and time has been wasted on building repositories where employees can’t find what they need and setting up social media that no one uses. In developing a KM strategy the first task is to identify what knowledge is needed by whom and then to prioritize those needs.  There is no way to transfer all the knowledge in an organization, so getting clear about where the greatest need exists, is critical. 

Tips and Guidelines

Please call or email me to set up a quick call so we can talk about what you need to accomplish with a knowledge transfer strategy and explore the best ways I can help you get there.  

“For more than a decade, Nancy has been providing strategic insights to ConocoPhillips' development of KM. Her initial ideas spawned the creation of our knowledge sharing program that is flourishing today. Nancy was instrumental in getting our executives onboard, convincing them that how a company connects and acts and operates like a global company should would drive additional business value."

- Dan Ranta, Former Director, Knowledge Sharing, ConocoPhillips 

“Nancy has been a great sounding board as our global nonprofit worked through ways to share and effectively use knowledge. While building our knowledge processes, if we struggled with an approach, she was able to remind us of the latest research on knowledge management and provide concrete examples of how others have dealt with similar issues.”

- Molly M. Fubel, Director of Knowledge Systems, Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)   

  1. Identify the organizational business objectives that the strategy is intended to support, for example, bring new members of the sales force up to speed more quickly, reduce the rework across projects by one third, or reduce instances of malaria by 25% in three regions. 
  2. Identify key stakeholders who impact or are impacted by the objectives. Stakeholders   include those who hold the knowledge and those who need it, those who do the work, their managers, and members of the support systems for the work
  3. Audit the current KM practices of the key stakeholders, a) where they get knowledge from and b) what knowledge is lacking for them, c) their ability to access needed knowledge in repositories, d) the current practices that are in place that are working well, e) review the recognition systems, and f) uncover cultural norms that encourage or discourage knowledge, g) assess the attitude of managers toward knowledge management.
  4. Design and prioritize KM strategies that support reaching the organization’s business objectives, strengthening those that work and developing new strategies where needed. 
  5. Identify tools for monitoring and evaluation of KM practices and of the contribution that KM practices make to the organization’s business objectives. 
  6. Identify the KM skills and competencies needed to support the KM practices including the those of leadership, KM specialists, IT specialists, managers and employees. 
  7. Develop a communication strategy for KM, in cooperation with the communication department, that includes developing a KM steering committee.
  8. Develop an implementation plan for phase one. 

The initial strategy implementation need not involve the whole organization. Change can start small and focus initially on areas where there is greatest need—pain points. The initial focus of the KM strategy can be on a Division or Department, so the organization can learn from the implementation and can make needed revisions before rolling the strategy out to other units.

The critical difference that Common Knowledge Associates bring to a knowledge management assessment is the involvement of an internal team as joint researchers, rather than bringing in an external team to conduct the assessment. The internal team, acting in their role as joint researchers, is involved in data collection, analysis, and the development of findings. The internal team is composed of those whose work and behavior is expected to change.  See Knowledge Management Assessment Conducted Using Knowledge Management Principles (below) for details of this innovative and cost-effective assessment process.



Building a Knowledge Management Strategy