Knowledge And Content 2008 – Day One

Published by Richard Hare on

Over to Earls Court this morning for Day One of Ark Group‘s Knowledge And Content 2008, arriving shortly after the start of the panel discussion on what KM means in 2008. Noted that it still means different things to different people, something to bear in mind within different organisations. That eternal question of knowing what you want to achieve, rather than which tools you want to implement.

I grabbed a coffee at the break, but didn’t quite feel up to meeting people yet, so went back to Gary Klein’s “Sources Of Power” which I’d been looking at on the way down (thanks to Tony Quinlan for the recommendation).

It was announced that Steve Denning‘s session was open upstairs to anyone interested. I must have misread my schedule – or assumed it was following a similar track to one I attended a few years ago – because I’d assumed this was taking place on Friday. (If I’d realised, I would’ve made more effort to be in time for Victor Newman’s session first thing.) I made a quick decision which unfortunately meant missing the panel discussion on Generation Y, but this was too good an opportunity to miss if by some miracle I could squeeze in.

I needn’t have worried, since there were six other people in the room with Steve, including the aforementioned Tony Quinlan. They’d just decided to abandon the proposed workshop and instead discuss Steve’s new project, hot spots and high performing teams, the subject which he’d presented on at The Smithsonian back in May (read Steve’s paper).

We spent the next hour or so telling stories about our own experience of high performing teams, while Steve outlined some of the behaviours he’d noted which tend to exemplify such teams. He came up with purpose, ability to bond, autonomy to innovate, the presence of boundary spanners (people who bring in knowledge from outside) and rhythm. The group must’ve enjoyed the session because after lunching with Tony, the rest of us reconvened over a table for dessert. Some interesting conversations were started, so I hope we’ll run into each other again soon.

The afternoon was less interesting for me. Very few stories in either the bullet point-led presentation on search and the “shouting over confusing diagrams” one on e-learning meant little memorable to take away before I had to depart to be home in time for the evening’s performance.

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