KO and the Enterprise of the Future

April 6, 2009

KM World recently ran a short but spot-on article entitled The Future of the The Future: An opportunity for real change by Art Murray. A couple of short excerpts should suffice to convey the flavour:

In today’s economic climate, it’s clear more than ever—traditional business models no longer work. They are too slow and impede the flow of knowledge—the exact opposite of what is needed to succeed in a turbulent, high-risk economy.”

“At the very least, we need to momentarily halt the process, introduce some serious changes and reboot. Here’s a partial list of specific transformations, any one of which will introduce a new way of doing business that will help propel you forward.”

Murray’s five transformations (on which he elaborates) are:

  • Make the move from hierarchies to networks once and for all
  • Make the cultural shift from silos and knowledge hoarding to openness and knowledge sharing
  • Move from slow, random learning to a systemized approach for fast learning
  • Become fixated on systemic improvements rather than point solutions
  • Move from saying, “That’ll never work here,” to “Let’s find a way to make it work.”

A better checklist of survival initiatives I cannot imagine. Similar sentiments are being expressed elsewhere, from Clay Shirky’s Ontology is Overrated a few years ago, to the challenge posed by Web 2.0 to structured information management disciplines like Records Management  (see e.g. Steve Dale’s recent blog entry EDRM and Web 2.0 – where two worlds collide).

The question is, where does this relentless drift towards the informal, the unstructured and the ‘wisdom of crowds’ leave the highly structured world of KO?