It is often confusing when people talk about ‘Knowledge Management’, what everyone’s perspective and understanding of the terms being used are. Here is my attempt to describe my understanding, based on over 20 years working in the profession of Knowledge Management (by example of planning for a vacation):
- i research the internet for possible locations to go to for vacation, look on wikipedia about their attractions, culture, and – weather data. when does it rain, when does the sun shine, data to help me understand when the best time is to go there.
- i am creating my own personal wiki page document to capture and organi e the data i found in the context of the location I decided to have vacation at. i may share that document with others, get feedback, improve it version by version, until I feel confident that I have the right information to make a decision
- i also look on the internet on sites like tripadvisor about other people experiences and advice on the location, the hotel, etc. where I want to go for vacation. Even after the vacation, I consider going back to those exact sites and share my experiences to help the next person to make a better decision resulting in a great vacation
- social media
- coming back from the vacation, i have information flyers, pictures of attractions and activities that made the vacation so great. i want to share those moments with others, allow them to be part of the experiences I made – in retrospect. Maybe I even shared some of the media I collected quasi-live through my mobile device on twitter or facebook, by uploading pictures or checking in at the locations where I had been.
- social networking
- last not least, I met people along the way of my vacation – some of which I want to stay in contact with. were they more business oriented, I connect with them on LinkedIn. If they were more personal, I would network with them on Facebook or Google+, allowing me to share data, information, knowledge and social media on common topics of interest with my social network
Now replace the topic of vacation planning with something business oriented – the same principles will hold true.
That is my understanding of the terms related to Knowledge Management and I would argue that data, information, experience, social media and social networking are all connected and are aspects of the bigger concept of Knowledge Management.
An attempt on defining terms of Knowledge Management by example of planning for a vacation