Gurteen Knowledge Letter: Issue 159 - September 2013


The Gurteen Knowledge Letter is a monthly newsletter that is distributed to members of the Gurteen Knowledge Community. You may receive the Knowledge Letter by joining the community. Membership is totally free. You may read back-copies here.

Gurteen Knowledge Letter: Issue 159 - September 2013


  1. Introduction to the September 2013 Knowledge Letter
  2. The SIKM Leaders Community
  3. Where to ask questions about KM
  4. Wipro KM Confluence 2013 Summary
  5. Mille's first Knowledge Cafe
  6. 50% discount off my book "Leading Issues in Social Knowledge Management"
  7. KM Asia - Why is trying to engage people so difficult?
  8. GurteenTalk
  9. Upcoming Events
  10. Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: September 2013
  11. Subscribing and Unsubscribing
  12. The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

Introduction to the September 2013 Knowledge Letter

I gave a talk at an internal company conference in Munich a few days ago on Knowledge Networking to business managers from all over Europe. I would have preferred it was a Knowledge Cafe but that was not what was asked of me.

The closest I got to initiating some conversation was towards the end of my talk when I asked the audience to turn to each other in groups of 3 or 4 (it was lecture style seating) and to have a brief conversation on the following
What are the realities we are not currently facing and what are the conversations we should be having?

There was no guarantee that this would provoke any reflection or that any interesting conversations would result. But it seemed the closest I could get to triggering some meaningful conversation in the organisation. I hope I hear back that it did.

So what conversations should you be having in your organisation right now and what are the questions you should be asking?

Think on it - even have a conversation with someone about it :-)

The SIKM Leaders Community

I recently gave a talk for the SIKM Leaders Community on Organizational Conversation. You will find the slides here and the audio recording here.

I felt rather guilty as Stan Garfield has been running the community for over 7 years and this is the first time I have listened in or taken part. Its a simple format for giving talks over the web but works well.

Over the years Stan has had some great speakers and has more coming up. Take a look, join up and tune in to the next talk :-) If you are new to KM its a great way to learn and get up to speed on KM topics and issues.
The SIKM Leaders Community is a community of Knowledge Management leaders from around the world. It was created in 2005 and is open to all KM practitioners. The goal is to share experiences and insights on implementing KM programs. Diverse opinions are welcome if expressed in a supportive and collaborative manner.

The community hold calls on the third Tuesday of each month from 11am-12pm US Eastern Time. The 100th call was held in September, 2013.

Past presenters have included Kate Pugh, Larry Prusak, David Gurteen, Etienne Wenger, Thomas Vander Wal, Richard McDermott, Kent Greenes, Jack Vinson, Frank Leistner, Raj Datta, Shawn Callahan, Tom Davenport, Dan Ranta, Verna Allee, Steve Denning, Carla O'Dell. John McQuary, James Robertson, John Hagel, Marcia Conner, Patrick Lambe, Bill Ives, Patti Anklam, Arthur Shelley, Nancy White, Hubert Saint-Onge, and David Weinberger.

Future presenters include Alexis Adair, Murray Jennex, Nancy Dixon, Catherine Shinners, Steve Wieneke, Steve Kaukonen & Thomas Hsu, Thomas Blumer, Karla Phlypo, Gordon Vala-Webb, Curtis Conley, Tony Byrne, Marcie Zaharee & Frank Linton, Lee Romero, Mary Abraham, Al Simard, and Roberto Evaristo.

To join the community, go here and click on + Join Group.

Once you have joined, to see future calls, go here and click on Date three times.

Where to ask questions about KM

I am often asked questions by email about KM and other business topics for that matter. I get maybe 3 or 4 such emails each week. I don't mind questions, in fact I encourage them, especially ones pertinent to my work around "organizational conversation" and my knowledge cafes. I love questions that I can't answer as these often provoke a lot of thinking and googling on the issue on my part and consequently some good learning.

But far to often, I get questions like "David, could you tell me everything there is to know about Knowledge Management?" Yes, really I have had that question. If I am feeling churlish I give them this link here where they will find everything they could possible ever want to know. LOL

If I am feeling more charitable I point them to the Gurteen Knowledge Community Group on LinkedIn. The discussion forum has now grown to over 4,000 members and is one of the more active of the KM LinkedIn groups. Its a good place to get answers to your questions though there are many other KM forums to chose from.

You can join LinkedIn here: https://www.linkedin.com/reg/join and the Gurteen Knowledge Community Group here : http://www.linkedin.com/groupRegistration?gid=1539.

And feel free to invite me to connect with you.

Wipro KM Confluence 2013 Summary

Not many organisations are large enough and so committed to KM as to hold their own internal KM conference but Wipro did just that only a few weeks ago in Bangalore.

Wipro extended its spirit of Knowledge Management by inviting academicians, external KM experts and business leaders along with delegates from over 48 organizations to collaborate, share, network, and grow by bringing them all under one roof with a daylong for Wipro KM Confluence 2013.

They also produced a nice report on the event that you can find here Wipro KM Confluence 2013

I wish more organizations would take KM as seriously.

Mille's first Knowledge Cafe

Earlier in the year I ran a Gurteen Knowledge Cafe masterclass in Copenhagen. One of the participants was Mille Holm Nielsen, so I was delighted to receive this little email from her a few days ago.

Dear David

Last week I held my first Knowledge Café, and it was a great success.

We were approximately 20 people together (from management to engineers) and needed to discuss how to ensure that we use learning and improve our daily business, processes etc. I had 5 tables of 4 people and ran 3 rounds with the big circle in the end.

The feedback I have received has been very positive. They enjoyed that they could just focus on the conversation and discuss a lot of different ideas with different people, and all the time got new inspiration when they changed tables.

So it was a very good experience, and I will definitely use it again, when I see a proper topic for the occasion.

Thanks for the inspiration.

Best regards, Mille
Mille Holm Nielsen
Siemens A/S
Copenhagen, Denmark

Have you run a Knowledge Cafe yet? If not, then ask me for a copy of my tipsheet to help get you started. I have it available in a number of languages. Or ask my about my masterclasses. I have several planned around the world in 2014. The first in Oslo late January.

50% discount off my book "Leading Issues in Social Knowledge Management"

Earlier this year Academic Publishing International published Leading Issues in Social Knowledge Management.

The book is a collection of ten academic papers that I carefully selected to create the volume and wrote a short editorial comment on each paper.

You can now purchase the book at a 50% discount by quoting the code SKM50 when you order online.

KM Asia - Why is trying to engage people so difficult?

At KM Asia 2013 in Singapore in November I will be running a Knowledge Cafe as part of the plenary session and facilitating a post-conference workshop.

Nancy Dixon will be speaking and chairing and of course the event would not be complete without Dave Snowden and Ron Young.

I always love visiting Singapore and hope to see many of you there from SE Asia and even farther a field. :-)
Gurteen Knowledge Cafe: Why is trying to engage people so difficult?

Trying to engage people or to motivate them to share their knowledge and to work more collaboratively together is a challenge for many organisations.

What are we doing wrong? What are we missing? Is there something we don't understand about human nature? Are our actions such as rewards and recognition only make things worse?

These are the questions that will drive the conversation in this Gurteen Knowledge Cafe.

Interestingly, I just came across this article Forget Employee Engagement; U.S. Companies Need Passionate Workers that provides some food for thought.
Workshop: Conversation: Our most powerful Knowledge Management tool

Face to face conversation is our most effective Knowledge Management tool. It is critical in communication, learning, knowledge sharing, and relationship building.

It could even be argued that it is our most powerful business tool.

Conversation is the medium through which we make sense of the world. It is the key to better decision making and innovation.

To communicate effectively takes dialogue - face to face conversation in which we enter with a willingness to learn - not to win an argument.

Our primary role as KM leaders is to architect such conversations and to convene and facilitate them.

We have an array of tools at our disposal to do this: peer-assists, after-action-reviews and knowledge cafes to name just a few.

In this highly interactive, conversational workshop, we will explore the role of conversation in business and the conversational tools that are available to address a diversity of business issues.


I have a new section on my website entitled Gurteen Talk. It is essentially a list of Tweets that I have posted on Twitter with the hash-tag #GurteenTalk.

Each tweet contains a link to a substantive article or blog post that focuses on "Organizational Conversation" or other related topics. If you click through on any of the links you will be taken to a page on my website that not only contains the Tweet but a fuller description of the article that it links to.

This may seem a strange thing to do but it is part of a long term project of mine to use Twitter as a shared book marking tool to book mark such blog posts and articles

In doing this, I am not only building up a library of articles on "conversation" for my own use but it is also automatically shared with people with similar interests.

You can see the actual Tweets below and the GurteenTalk section of my website here.

Upcoming Events

Here are 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.

London Knowledge Cafe: Are skills and behaviours more important than knowledge for modern day graduates?
02 Oct 2013, London, United Kingdom

KM Singapore 2013
02 - 04 Oct 2013, Singapore City, Singapore

TallyFox: Knowledge Management Workshop (Frankfurt)
09 Oct 2013, Frankfurt, Germany
I am speaking at this woskhop along with Dave Snowden and David Griffiths.

What steps do libraries and information services need to take to survive in the Google age?
16 Oct 2013, London, United Kingdom

International Conference on Knowledge Economy icke2013
28 - 30 Oct 2013, Cape Town, South Africa

Organisational Learning Conference (OLC MENA 2013)
30 - 31 Oct 2013, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
I will be running a Knowledge Cafe at this event.

The 8th International Conference on Knowledge Management (ICKM 2013)
01 - 02 Nov 2013, Montréal, Canada

9th Knowledge Globalization Conference
01 - 02 Nov 2013, Boston, United States

KMWorld 2013
06 - 08 Nov 2013, Washington DC, United States

KM Asia 2013 #KMAsia
12 - 14 Nov 2013, Singapore City, Singapore
I will be running a Knowledge Cafe and a workshop "Conversation: Our most powerful Knowledge Management tool" at KM Asia this year.

KM Russia 2013
27 - 28 Nov 2013, Moscow, Russia
I will be taking part in this conference.

Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: September 2013

Here are what I consider some of my more interesting Tweets for August to September 2013. Take a look, if you are not a Tweeter, you will get a good idea of how I use it by browsing the list of micro-posts.

If you like the Tweets then subscribe to my Tweet stream.

Subscribing and Unsubscribing

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

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 Henley 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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The Gurteen Knowledge Community is a global learning community of over 21,000 people in 160 countries across the world.

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Membership of the Gurteen Knowledge Community is free.
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