Chapter 10: A Management Agenda
Ard-Pieter de Man INTRODUCTION Knowledge management within organizations is a challenging task. Few organizations succeed in ensuring the eﬀective transfer, sharing and creation of knowledge. To extend knowledge management beyond company boundaries involves even more challenges. The case studies have shown that knowledge management in networks is possible, but that there is a limit to it. Coincidence will continue to play a role in networks. The cases have revealed no grand design for knowledge management, but they also show that such a conscious design is not always necessary to get knowledge ﬂowing. Trying to control all knowledge is not possible and is probably also counterproductive. It would require so many rules and regulations that the cost would be prohibitive. Still, there is much companies can do to improve knowledge management. The ﬂip-side of the limits to knowledge management is that limiting knowledge ﬂows is also only possible to some extent. Knowledge will ﬂow from one company to the next in the normal encounters people have or via formal communication (websites, trade journals etc.). No company is an island and as long as organizations exist, knowledge will ﬂow in and out. Even when companies try to limit the ﬂow of knowledge consciously, they may not succeed. The Glare case has shown that knowledge exchange continued despite oﬃcial discouragement by management. This chapter deﬁnes the guidelines for organizations. It starts by deﬁning the steps required to develop an eﬀective knowledge-sharing network. Next, it digs deeper into customization...
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