Jul 312016

MentoringI want to start this blog post by asking a question.

Question: Once you complete a training class, a college course, and/or a seminar are you then ready right away to apply what you’ve learned to effectively do your job?

I believe in 90% of the cases that answer is NO!

So how do we begin to address this? One proven way is to have a trusted mentor with the expertise you need to work with your team or individual to implement what has been learned. Mentoring or instituting a mentor protégé program is a proven method to transfer knowledge. Knowledge Management (KM) like any other discipline, needs mentors (or experts) to assist organizations to properly carry out their vision and mission for implementing KM. To properly execute KM at your organization, no matter if your organization is new to KM or have a need to bring your team to another level of understanding, mentoring is the preferred method.

Mentor, Coach or Consultant (adapted from Afif Tabsh)

So what distinguishes a mentor, coach or consultant:

Mentor: Someone who has a considerable amount of experience in a specific field, topic, industry and uses it to guide others, to show them how to use it and understand why it’s used a certain way.

Coach: Someone who has the skills and know-how of asking the right questions to people to extract ideas, concerns and decisions from them. A coach works through others to get results rather than show them the way or guide them into a solution.

Consultant: Someone who has the knowledge and expertise in a certain field, topic or industry along with the skills of how to facilitate discussions and ask the right questions to be able to give you the best solution for a specific issue or problem you are facing.

A Mentor is a combination of both Coach and Consultant!

What we are doing at my firm A.J. Rhem & Associates is implementing an online mentoring environment for Knowledge Management. We are taking the idea of the mentor and creating an environment where those who are working with KM to execute KM projects and/or establish KM programs can receive the guidance needed to achieve success and deliver on what KM can do for you as a practitioner and your organization.

Knowledge Management Mentor – Online

The KM Mentor.com site brings essential KM concepts to all subscribers that are not only from a foundational perspective but also from a practical application. These concepts include but are not limited to, capturing and codifying tacit and explicit knowledge, KM methods, information architecture, search, KM and social media, KM and Big Data, and the adoption of KM.

KM Mentor provides access to:

  • Presentations by industry leaders on a variety of topics
  • KM templates and instruction on executing KM strategy, performing knowledge transfer, and KM assessments and audits
  • KM program and project implementation guidance
  • Insights and reviews on KM tools
  • Guidance on implementing and executing various KM Methods
  • Specialized KM publications
  • A private secure collaboration community for members to discuss ideas and get expert answers and advice

As always I welcome your comments!


May 012013

Knowledge Management educationAs the college school year comes to an end, a vast number of undergraduates are either looking to start their career, or looking to continue their education.

If your graduate is looking to embark on the continued educational journey, I would suggest they consider a Master of Science degree in Knowledge Management.

You may not know that Knowledge Management continues to be a growing discipline in which organizations are seeking qualified individuals. A Master of Science concentration in Knowledge Management offers students an opportunity to enter the Knowledge Economy and become an important asset to organizations working to get the right knowledge to the right people at the right time.

When considering a Masters in Knowledge Management, each student should consider a university program that presents a holistic approach to the principles, practices, policies, and technology that are being deployed today at organizations in the field of Knowledge Management.

A Master of Science concentration in Knowledge Management will provide the successful student with the ability to assist organizations in making better decisions, understand where knowledge exist and uncover knowledge gaps that will lead to better performance and communication between workers.

Here are some universities offer Masters in Knowledge Management:

Knowledge Systems Institute
George Mason University
George Washington University
Kent State

Here are some additional MS in KM programs:

Notre Dame of Maryland
Columbia University
Drexel University
Northwestern University
California InterContinental University
Jones International University

More University MS in KM Programs:

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

If you know of others please let me know and I will add them to this blog post!

Jan 112010

Army Enterprise Knowledge Management Competency ModelI recently read the discussion, and the associated comments, around KM education, which includes university courses (Masters programs), Certification programs, and Certificate programs.

This discussion is hosted by Art Schlussel in the CKO (Chief Knowledge Officer) forum in LinkedIn. It inspired me to elaborate on my thoughts concerning KM education. As I stated in my comments to Art, for any education to be effective it must be supported by practical application, including having experienced mentors work with participants who have recently completed any number of various KM training venues.

In the discussion, Art mentioned that a partnership between the US military and a well know accredited university would build a comprehensive KM training program is in its preliminary stages. However, the major issue is, what does or will this training consist of, taking into account the fact that the US military wants it to follow their KM Competency Model (see above).

I believe that the KM Training should have a holistic approach, which will cover the following:

  • The basics, and differences between data, information, and knowledge.
  • Establishing “your” definition of knowledge management.
  • Developing/executing knowledge management strategy (including knowledge audits, knowledge mapping, KM process.)
  • Identifying and addressing knowledge gaps (result from knowledge audit.)
  • Collaboration and knowledge sharing (Communities of Practice.)
  • Knowledge transfer planning (mentor protege, knowledge codification.)
  • Collecting and applying knowledge management metrics.
  • Identifying, planning, and executing KM projects/initiatives.
  • Knowledge management tools (wikis, blogs, search, KM systems.)

While this is not an exhaustive list, the approach must include the planning, strategy, and processes applied for knowledge management as well as the software that will enable and support the execution of the KM program initiatives.

The Army’s KM Competency Model serves as a foundation to how the Army will approach KM and forms the basis of what KM will address from the Army’s perspective. The Army’s Enterprise KM Competency Model represents one holistic approach to institutionalizing KM.

I believe that a holistic approach to KM is where we must begin in our training as well as our execution of KM at our organizations.

Mar 112009

Chicago Tech Academy

I had the pleasure of attending an exciting event for the Chicago Academy for Advance Technology (CAAT) on Friday March 6 2009.

This event was a student lottery, selecting the first 150 students for its inaugural class starting August 2009


This is the first high school of its kind, a part of the Chicago Public School system, that provides its students with the opportunity to learn state-of-the-art technology, shadow executives, and be mentored all the way through high school.

This institution is supported by many local businesses and entrepreneurs as well as major corporations (IBM, Microsoft, and Oracle, too name a few), school officials, and government representatives, including Mayor Richard J. Daley, Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan, and President Barack Obama.

Being a technology advocate for many years, speaking to high school and college students about the opportunities that focusing on computer science and engineering will bring, it brought me considerable joy to see a room full of enthusiastic young people and their parents being excited about their selection into this high school. Please join me in supporting this institution and its students as they represent the future of our country and our ability to compete technologically in a global economy.