Knowledge Management Institute

No. 1 Secret to Change Management Success

No. 1 Secret to Change Management Success

Mar 06, 2013  

When an organization implements a new venture, one of the questions raised concerns the return on investment (ROI) of the program. One of the top five knowledge management practices to improve ROI, as discussed in our February 4 blog, is obtaining your leadership’s commitment. This is critical to the success of the knowledge management program within your organization. Management buy-in ensures that adequate resources will be devoted to the KM enterprise which you desire to establish. As one who aims to run a successful KM program, how do you present your KM strategies to the leadership of your organization to obtain their approval, especially when they may be skeptical about the value of KM?

To begin, your KM strategy must be designed to very specifically fit the knowledge needs of the organization. If leadership does not clearly see how implementing KM practices benefits overall productivity, they are less likely to devote time and resources to your KM plan. When developing a KM strategy, asking key questions such as “what problems does the organization face which can be alleviated by proper KM practices?” will help to direct the formulation of a strategy in which management can clearly see the benefits of implementing a particular KM program.

The KM strategy developed must contain a specific course of action by which it will be implemented. When you are realistic about goals as well as resources needed, supported by data, you are more likely to obtain approval from the management of your organization. Present your KM strategy as you would any other business model, and demonstrate why KM is necessary within your organization. Make it clear to those in management that through KM practices, knowledge will be captured, stored, and shared in an increasingly efficient manner, in turn improving the productivity of the entire organization.

As Carla O’Dell states in her article, A Knowledge Strategy Senior Leaders Can Get Behind, “If the KM team can supply hard data to validate its business case and demonstrate the impact of KM on performance, it will be in a good position to secure continued funding and/or argue for the expansion of the current program.”

In other words, build your business case, support it with the numbers, and get the buy-in required for success. Then back it up with performance -- nothing less will work to secure long term management commitment to good KM programs.

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