Knowledge Management

Peg Holman pholman at
Thu Oct 7 09:24:46 PDT 1999

As I've read the messages on knowledge management, the phrase that keeps
running through my head is one I hear from David Cooperrider and Diana
Whitney when they talk about Appreciative Inquiry:

narrative rich communication

To me, that's what we get from each other by sharing stories.  Such
communication holds spirit in its belly; it encapsulates the tacit.  It is
what makes knowledge more about relationship and connection, defying our
ability to put it in a database.

Peg Holman

-----Original Message-----
From: Richard Charles Holloway <learnshops at>
Date: Tuesday, October 05, 1999 10:06 AM
Subject: Re: Knowledge Management

>no, Kay...I don't believe that they lack the ability to form teams--it just
>seems like it sometimes (-;
>What's lacking (usually) is the purpose and individual belief system (why
>should I be part of a team?  I've always been successful on my own!); the
>training or education (when was the last time you heard of a school
>"examining" and "grading" a study group as opposed to a student?); and the
>organizational performance drivers (compensation; rewards; promotion;
>When people do successfully form teams, it is usually because these 3
>components are satisfied to allow people to collaboratively work together.
>Of course, there are many instances of people who naturally work this way.
>It's just that the organization's culture tends to create a performance
>obstacle to collaborative behavior.  One of the saddest things is to undo
>the cynicism brought on by an organizational culture for people who
>naturally tend to want to work together.
>My experience is that many knowledge workers do want to work together,
>collaboratively.  They enjoy forming the "community of practice" that
>them to optimize their enjoyment, their working experience.  Organizational
>systems spoil this natural tendency.  Indeed, most of this begins to happen
>at the very point when youngsters enter the educational system.  On the
>sporting field, the activity is mostly team-centered.  In the classroom,
>it's almost all individual-centered.
>There are some activities which are best left to individual endeavor--but
>the workplace is often best served by groups of people working
>collaboratively together.  Sharing knowledge (for the purposes described by
>the term KM) requires collaborative behavior.  So the key is to change
>organizational systems so that they create the appropriate environment for
>the type of behavior we want to support--whether it's individual
>contribution or collaborative contribution.  Or, perhaps better yet, so
>each person and team can optimize behavior to meet the situation.
>That's why OS can be such a powerful way for people in organizations to
>begin addressing the needed changes...and because the right changes occur
>people only as they mature (develop their capacity) within a changing
>organization, OS meetings become an evolutionary way for them to adapt
>themselves and their organization to shape their future.  At least, this is
>the way I'm planning to introduce and use OS within these groups.
>thanks for asking...hope this is a coherent response.
>----- Original Message -----
>From: Kay Wakefield <Kbwatty at>
>Sent: Tuesday, October 05, 1999 8:23 AM
>Subject: Re: Knowledge Management
>> Doc, do I understand you to say that most professionals (doctors,
>> accountants) lack the necessary ability to form teams which allow for
>> of knowledge and wisdom? I don't necessarily think you wrong, but would
>> you to expand on your thought. I'm particularly interested in your
>> about how it might work for these professionals to become more
>> (for lack of a better word).
>> Kay
>> Kay B. Wakefield, Esq.
>> Wakefield McCobb, P.C.
>> 1618 SW First Avenue Suite 210
>> Portland, Oregon 97201
>> (503) 223-8046
>> kbwatty at
>> The Family Business Law Firm

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