Either you know something or you don´t

Either you know how it is like to see red or you don´t. There are no intermediate versions of yourself that could know just a bit about red, and the same applies to any other qualia, knowledge included.

Though this leads to a deep philosophical discussion, if we take for valid this dichotomy we obtain interesting consequences on how to measure the success of your KM programme.

The version of you who does not know how to analyze a balance sheet is different from the version who can. If dealing with balance sheets is necessary for your work, then knowledge management is what must happen to get you from one version of you to the other.

So, the simplest and yet powerful recipe to measure the success of KM would look like this:
  1. Identify what people have to know, the core knowledge of your business.
  2. Break it down in as many elements as necessary so the employee can respond confidently with a yes/no answer if they have that knowledge or not.
  3. Identify what the employees know now. That is, ask them and count how many "yes" you get.
  4. ...here goes your knowledge management...
  5. Identify what they know later on. Ask again and count the number of "yes".
  6. Act upon the answers: good results, keep doing what you did in 4; bad results, think it over.
  7. Learn from mistakes. Grow.
  8. Go to 1.
As usual, it is easier said than done.
But here again, either you do it or you don´t.


"The conscious mind", by David Chalmers

Image from Pixabay

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