June 10, 2012

Nonaka's SECI knowledge spiral and culture for knowledge

I had been studying about how to implement knowledge management. There are more than 20 models that I had come across for implementing knowledge.But I felt the best one was from Nonaka..the Socialization-Externalization-Combination and Internalization model as i concnetrates on how to convert the two kings of knowledge- tacit and explicit together. Moreover, it builds on the fact that Knowledge management can never be cyclic, it has to be spiral, as once a cycle finishes, an organizaion would have more knowledge than the previous year and thus, an organization wuld always build from that and move into highe knowledge. Thats why I felt Nonaka's model made the most sense. Moreover, it is known as the knowledge creating model, however I felt that both storing and utilization of knowledge, that are theother components of knowledge management, does happen during its stages. Thus, I felt it was a very complete model. However, I do feel that in order to implement this model, an organization would certainly have to create a culture, an environment that would support knowledge management. Without that, applying any model would not really help. An organization would have to have a culture where every member trusts each other and each employee is has a mentality of team spirit. Only if employees trust each other and are ready to coordinate with each other, then they would really share knowledge amongst themselves and would try to enrich the organization. Shared vision and mental models are necessary for any creation or management of knowledge. It is necessary so that each employee have the same target in mind, that is, the vision of the company. Only when this can happen, any organization can even think about knowledge management.

Generally, knowldge management is seen as that of technology-driven. However, as much as I have read and interpreted, it is quite clear that any knowledge management system can only survive if the employees of the company are willing. Thus, it becomes imperative for the leaders of that organization to make a cultue and environment as such so that no one is jealous of each other, and everybody thinks that they are treated fairly by the management. Only then would employees be willing to give their 100% for the organization. Also, the management needs to show and make it clear to the employees, the importance of knowledge management and the high regard it gives to it, to make them contribute to it and become a part of the system. Moreover, the management needs to be open and free, so that the employees are allowed to experiment and innovate without the fear in their hearts hat if an experiment goes wrong they will be thrown out of the company. It is then only that more knowledge could be created as the main knowledge is generated through on-the-job learning.

Thus, we can see that leadership and culture of the organization are of utmost importance before any organization can even think about putting in a system or model of knowledge management.

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