Gurteen Knowledge-Letter: Issue 105 - March 2009


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Gurteen Knowledge-Letter: Issue 105 - March 2009


  1 Introduction to the March 2009 Knowledge Letter
  2 Twitter as a tool for Personal Knowledge Management
  3 Thinking big about "small pieces"
  4 Raising all the ships on the sea
  5 Follow your passion Lauren!
  6 Ten recent tweets
  7 Jay Cross wants no more learners
  8 KMWorld call for speakers
  9 KM Event Highlights
10 Subscribing and Unsubscribing
11 The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

Introduction to the March 2009 Knowledge Letter    (top | next | prev)

There are a large number of Knowledge Management societies, institutes, networks and forums around the globe which you can join to learn more about Knowledge Management, informal learning and more. 

Over the years, I have built a KM Network Directory of these on my website.

Take a look and if you are aware of any existing networks that are in not in the directory please let me know. There are quite a few countries unrepresented.

Twitter as a tool for Personal Knowledge Management    (top | next | prev)

Eric Mack thinks that within 18 months Twitter will change our world. I agree!
I see three key benefits of using Twitter:
  • It lowers resistance to sharing information. (The 140 character limitation is now a strength.)
  • It makes it easy to tap into a global mindset.
  • And it provides quick recognition and feedback for what you think and know.

Credit: Eric Mack

But I am disappointed to find so few KM people Tweeting. Twitter is one of the most powerful knowledge sharing and relationship building tools on the web.

I know I keep banging the Twitter drum but do go take a look and check out my list of KM tweeters! And follow me. I usually tweet several times a day on something of interest :-)

Thinking big about "small pieces"    (top | next | prev)

I picked up on this post on Thinking big about small pieces from Euan Semple from a response Imagination, intuition ... and small steps? by Dina Mehta.
One of the challenges for those of us who believe that we are at the beginning of a very significant period of change in how we see ourselves, our societies and our businesses is how to imagine what the future will be like. Having grand schemes and megalomaniac designs seems out of place with something that is in essence personal and intimate.

Part of me believes that we will get somewhere worthwhile if each of us takes the small steps that seem to make sense to us and that in aggregate these small steps will achieve something significant. The other part of me believes that this will confine us to thinking small and achieving less than we could and that without some inspiring, grander and more comprehensive vision we won't make much difference at all.

This ties in with concerns I have about making things happen in a world where making things happen is associated with old values and ways of thinking. How do you bring about significant change using conversations, influence and sticky ideas rather than command and control and grand plans?
In response, I shared with Euan one of my favorite quotes:
Children do not need to be made to learn to be better, told what to do or shown how. If they are given access to enough of the world, they will see clearly enough what things are truly important to themselves and to others, and they will make for themselves a better path into that world then anyone else could make for them.
Credit: From the book How children fail by John Holt
Like Euan, I have been wrestling with these very thoughts for some years and clearly Dina has too. Coincidentally, Euan and I met up in London last week and briefly discussed the issue and we agreed to take a long walk along the river Thames in a week or two to discuss the topic. I am looking forward to it.

Raising all the ships on the sea    (top | next | prev)

You may recall I write a regular column for InsideKnowledge Magazine published by the Ark Group.

You can see a summary of these articles on my website with links through to the actual articles on the InsideKnowledge Magazine website. Or you may prefer to view them in full color on Scibd where they are also downloadable and embeddable.
You might like to note that all these articles including a short booklet containing mainly of them is available freely for re-use.
A recent article is one of my favorites Raising all the ships on the sea where I look at the concepts of the commons; the tragedy of the commons and the more recent concept of the cornucopia of the commons where use of a common resource leads to abundance rather then depletion!

Follow your passion Lauren!    (top | next | prev)

I never encouraged my daughter to Lauren to blog even though I knew she loved writing and was a good writer. So I was delighted when she started last year. As a dad, I have loved her posts, as in each one I have learnt things about her that I have never learnt in conversation. That's part of the power of blogging! And then recently, I was delighted to read of my influence on her.
Some people know from the age of five or younger that when they grown up they want to be singers or doctors or accountants etc. I wasn't quite so lucky. My career aspirations changed every couple of years. I found lots of things interesting and could never fully commit myself to one passion. I just followed the advice my father gave me: "Do what you enjoy most" and with the back-up justification to all my interests that: "variety is the spice of life".
The excerpt is from a post is titled A life of domesticity: a worthy ambition? and in it she talks about her struggle to find a definitive career path. Later in the post she says:
So, I argue that my desire for domesticity can be classed as an ambition, and it can still be feminist because it is not about women conforming to rules laid down to them by their male partners, but about the freedom they have to be able to choose and the support and means they have nowadays to achieve it. With all this talk in the media of "Broken Britain", I think it is a rather worthy ambition and may I even go as far to say that it speaks volumes about the women who choose to pursue such a life. The slight question of taboo almost creates a feeling that I am embarking on a road less travelled! (Which I certainly like the idea of!)
I wonder what she will do with her life? I am pleased, that unlike earlier generations, she has the choice and as a dad I enjoy observing and supporting her. Follow your passion Lauren!

And if you read her post about the Lovely Sunday Roast - it was a great Sunday lunch despite the chilly gravy LOL.

Ten recent tweets    (top | next | prev)

I thought I'd share ten of my recent tweets for those of you who might have missed them. And for those of you not using Twitter - it gives you some idea of the richness of the tweets.

By the way, RT means re-tweet - a bit like forwarding an e-mail i.e. they are not my original tweets but those of others. Some very interesting and fun nuggets tweets!

Jay Cross wants no more learners    (top | next | prev)

Take a look and see what you think of this three-and-a-half minute rant about leveling the preacher-and-congregation model of learning from Jay Cross. I of course love it as you will recognize that is what my knowledge cafes are about. You can hear the story here of how I started the knowledge cafes in response to death-by-powerpoint presentations.

But also read the comments on Jays post. Some people do not agree with him. But note Jay is not saying that we need to get totally away from the teacher-student model of learning more that we need to shift the balance. Jay himself is in preach mode in delivering the rant and I am sure he was well aware of it. My Knowledge cafes also have a chalk-and-talk component.

And the comments about the road sign metaphor - its not that we need no road signs or no rules of the road but we need more balance. People need guidance at times but by and large we are quite capable of think for ourselves. Once again it is about balance.

What horrifies me is the "sit-and-git" style of teaching taken to extremes. Like the young Chinese woman in Norway who explained to me that when she was a little girl in China, she and the rest of her class were made to sit in nice neat rows and to actually sit on their hands to discourage them from fidgeting; heads up, chests out, facing the front of the class and be talked at! It seems they were not even allowed to ask questions!

Which reminds of one of my favorite quotes:
The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.
Let's go kindle some fires in each other :-)

KMWorld call for speakers    (top | next | prev)

To participate in KMWorld 2009 as a possible speaker or workshop leader, or suggest a speaker, please post your submission no later than April 15, 2009 at http://www.kmworld.com/kmw09/SpeakerSubmissions.htm

The event will be held 17 - 19 November 2009 in San Jose, California. I attended in 2007 and I am hoping I maye get to do so this year as well as it is one of the largest and most exciting KM Conference and Exhibition going.

The theme this year: "Resetting the Enterprise: Focusing on People, Talent & Knowledge".

KM Event Highlights    (top | next | prev)

This section highlights some of the major KM events taking place around the world in the coming months and ones in which I am actively involved. You will find a full list on my website where you can also subscribe to both regional e-mail alerts and RSS feeds which will keep you informed of new and upcoming events.

The Gurteen Knowledge Cafe Masterclass
21 Apr 2009, Rotterdam, Netherlands
I will be facilitating this masterclass in Rotterdam.

Congres Sociale Netwerken
22 Apr 2009, Rotterdam, Netherlands
I am giving the keynote talk at this conference.

Knowledge Management Africa 2009
04 - 07 May 2009, Dakar, Senegal

APQC Knowledge Management Conference 2009
14 - 15 May 2009, Houston, United States

Implementing a Knowledge Cafe
19 May 2009, London, United Kingdom
I am looking forward to facilitating this Masterclass in May.

KC UK 2009
08 - 09 Jun 2009, London, United Kingdom
I will be chairing KC UK this year.

International Conference on Knowledge Management
24 - 26 Jun 2009, Kampala, Uganda
I am hoping to speak at this conference if we can find a sponsor.

KM Australia 2009
04 - 07 Aug 2009, Sydney, Australia

Subscribing and Unsubscribing    (top | next | prev)

You may subscribe to this newsletter on my website. Or if you no longer wish to receive this newsletter or if you wish to modify your e-mail address or make other changes to your membership profile then please go to this page on my website.

The Gurteen Knowledge Letter    (top | next | prev)

The Gurteen Knowledge-Letter is a free monthly e-mail based KM newsletter for Knowledge Workers. Its purpose is to help you better manage your knowledge and to stimulate thought and interest in such subjects as Knowledge Management, Learning, Creativity and the effective use of Internet technology. Archive copies are held on-line where you can register to receive the newsletter.

It is sponsored by the Knowledge Management Forum of the Henley Business School, Oxfordshire, England.

You may copy, reprint or forward all or part of this newsletter to friends, colleagues or customers, so long as any use is not for resale or profit and I am attributed. And if you have any queries please contact me.

Gurteen Knowledge
Fleet, United Kingdom

If you are interested in Knowledge Management, the Knowledge Café or the role of conversation in organizational life then you my be interested in this online book I am writing on Conversational Leadership
David Gurteen

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