Video Collection: Critical Knowledge Transfer

You are surrounded by knowledge in your AEC firm. If you reflect for a few minutes, you’ll likely agree that not all of that knowledge is equal. Some knowledge in your firm is commoditized and easily replaced when people leave the firm. Some knowledge is outdated, wrong, and/or irrelevant, not missed when experts retire. However, there is another category of knowledge which comprises unique, hard-won, experience-based knowledge, which is essential to the success of your firm today, and in the future. Knowledge Management professionals call this “Critical Knowledge.” Critical Knowledge is the high-hanging fruit in your firm, located deep in the brains of your wisest people.

From September of 2016 through April of 2017 Knowledge Architecture sponsored an eight-month research project into Critical Knowledge Transfer. Dorothy Leonard, Chief Advisor of the Leonard-Barton Group and Professor Emerita of the Harvard Business School, led four firms—Shepley Bulfinch, SMMA, Dewberry, and HGA—in this project.

Below you will find Knowledge Architecture’s Critical Knowledge Collection, a boxed-set if you will. This KA Connect talk collection shares the individual experiences of each participating firm, as well as a deeper dive by Dorothy Leonard into the theory and practice of Critical Knowledge Transfer.

By watching these talks we hope you will walk away with a well-rounded perspective of the complex challenge of transferring Critical Knowledge, various Critical Knowledge Transfer strategies, and inspiration to move forward more effectively with Critical Knowledge Transfer within your firm.

Enjoy!

Experiments in Critical Knowledge Transfer at Shepley Bulfinch

Jim Martin of Shepley Bulfinch at KA Connect 2017.

In the fall of 2016, Shepley Bulfinch embarked upon an initiative to identify pockets of scarce, important, and hard-to-replace knowledge within their practice. Jim Martin shared lessons learned from the discovery process, approaches for capturing critical knowledge, and tactics for disseminating it to others in the firm.

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Posted: October 18th, 2017 | Filed under: All Posts | Tags: | Comments Off on Video Collection: Critical Knowledge Transfer

Enhancing Technical Learning with KM Strategies at BWBR

“We don’t have 20 years to develop a 20-year architect.”

BWBR, a Minneapolis-based design firm, faced a converging set of business challenges over the last few years, including:

  • the retirement of their long-serving technical director
  • an influx of new talent direct from the college classroom
  • an increase in the complexity of their projects
  • accelerated project schedules driven by client demand, industry competition, and technological disruption

Sound familiar?

Enter the Landmark Learning Series—a wildly successful, grassroots technical learning program—created by BWBR to help bring architects and designers with less than five years of experience up to speed on the fundamentals of designing and documenting buildings.

Dan Hottinger and Stefnee Trzpuc share their behind-the-scenes story of creating the Landmark Learning Series in their KA Connect 2017 talk, Teach Them How to Fish: Enhancing Technical Learning with KM Strategies.

If capturing and sharing technical knowledge is a top priority for your AEC firm, you won’t want to miss this talk.

Teach Them How to Fish: Enhancing Technical Learning with KM Strategies

Dan Hottinger and Stefnee Trzpuc of BWBR at KA Connect 2017.

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Posted: August 29th, 2017 | Filed under: Featured Talks | Tags: | Comments Off on Enhancing Technical Learning with KM Strategies at BWBR

KA Connect 2017 Conference Videos Now Available

All 18 talks and interviews from KA Connect 2017 are now available online.

Enjoy.

Posted: July 11th, 2017 | Filed under: All Posts | Tags: | Comments Off on KA Connect 2017 Conference Videos Now Available

Featured Video: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Knowledge Management Organizations

“The best thing that could ever happen to you in KM is that you find a business problem you can solve. Start with a business problem, fix it, and then you have the creds to do whatever else you need to do in KM.”

So began Carla O’Dell’s fantastic keynote talk at KA Connect 2016. Carla is the CEO of APQC and is widely considered by the knowledge management community to be one of leading experts in the world. Her KA Connect 2016 talk, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Knowledge Management Organizations,” distilled decades of researched best practices and hard-won insights into forty minutes of pure KM gold.

As Carla would say, I hope ya’ll enjoy it.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Knowledge Management Organizations

Carla O’Dell of APQC at KA Connect 2016.

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Posted: March 6th, 2017 | Filed under: All Posts, Featured Talks | Tags: | Comments Off on Featured Video: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Knowledge Management Organizations

Announcing KA Connect 2017 Speakers + Talks

KA Connect 2017

Today we’re announcing the speaker lineup and program for KA Connect 2017, our annual Knowledge Management Conference for the AEC Industry. KA Connect 2017 will take place at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on May 2nd and 3rd.

Senior and emerging leaders from top AEC firms will gather to learn strategies and tactics for building successful knowledge management programs. A wide range of experts will share their knowledge through talks, case studies, and interviews on topics such as:

  • Knowledge Strategy
  • Critical Knowledge
  • Knowledge Mapping
  • Mentorship
  • Learning & Development
  • Expert Interviews
  • Lessons Learned
  • Best Practices
  • Intranets

Attendees will have ample time to network and collaborate with their peers in breakout groups.

You can review the full speaker lineup here and the conference program here.

If you are passionate about helping your AEC firm create, share, and manage knowledge more effectively, this is the conference for you.

We hope you’ll join us.

P.S. Early registration is available through February 11th. Learn more at http://ka-connect.com/conference.php.

Posted: January 18th, 2017 | Filed under: All Posts | Comments Off on Announcing KA Connect 2017 Speakers + Talks

How Shepley Bulfinch Improved Knowledge Sharing through Measurement

AskFinch Defining Moment

The Defining Moment

In 2014, Mark Finneral, a director and technical architect at Shepley Bulfinch, logged over 177 questions and answers in an excel spreadsheet.

Mark was a magnet for questions because he is both technically savvy and a “nice guy.” Folks from both inside and outside the firm asked him very detailed, technical questions. While he was more than happy to answer the questions, he was starting to become concerned that the value he was providing to other project teams was coming at the expense of his utilization rate on his own projects. Perhaps even more concerning to Mark, was the the fact that only the people who asked him questions got value out of the face-to-face exchanges. (Well, Mark found the exchanges personally valuable as well.)

When the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) at Shepley Bulfinch learned about Mark’s spreadsheet, they realized they had a problem, which led them to ask the following questions:

  1. Is the quality of answers people are getting dependent on who they know and where they sit?
  2. Are we answering the same questions over and over?
  3. Are we learning from the experience of others?

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Posted: November 11th, 2016 | Filed under: Featured Talks | Tags: | Comments Off on How Shepley Bulfinch Improved Knowledge Sharing through Measurement

Announcing our Keynote Speakers for KA Connect 2017

ka-connect_logo_ka_connect_2017_600

KA Connect 2017, will take place at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on May 2nd and 3rd.

We are happy to announce Larry Prusak and Dorothy Leonard as our keynote speakers. They are wonderful speakers, experts in their fields, and each will lend a valuable industry outsider’s perspective to our AEC knowledge management community. We’re certainly looking forward to their talks.

If you are passionate about helping your AEC firm find, share, and manage knowledge more effectively, this is the conference for you.

We hope you’ll join us.

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Posted: September 25th, 2016 | Filed under: All Posts | Tags: | Comments Off on Announcing our Keynote Speakers for KA Connect 2017

Drew Wiberg on Building Knowledge Strategies with Search Data

Trying to manage knowledge without a strategy is like trying to sit at a table without a chair. In this video from KA Connect 2016, Drew Wiberg will methodically walk you through how he used search data to build a knowledge strategy for Eppstein Uhen Architects.

Take notes as Drew outlines the four legs of his knowledge strategy:

  • Search: Improve the reach of search queries and control preferred results
  • Navigation: Use Navigational Queries to inform efficient intranet design
  • Content: Identify and fill gaps in the knowledge base with new content
  • Education: Make educated guesses on the training needs of your firm

Don’t end up like Ichabod Crane, without a seat at the table. (I know that doesn’t make sense to you now, but Drew will cover how his experience with The Legend of Sleepy Hollow relates to knowledge strategy in the first minute and a half of his talk.)

Building Knowledge Strategies with Search Data

Drew Wiberg of Eppstein Uhen Architects at KA Connect 2016.

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Posted: September 6th, 2016 | Filed under: All Posts, Featured Talks | Tags: | Comments Off on Drew Wiberg on Building Knowledge Strategies with Search Data

KA Connect 2016 Conference Videos Now Available

All 25 talks, interviews, and panel discussions from KA Connect 2016 are now available online.

Enjoy.

Posted: June 21st, 2016 | Filed under: All Posts | Tags: | Comments Off on KA Connect 2016 Conference Videos Now Available

Confessions of a Knowledge Manager

“I can’t find the sodding thing that I’m looking for!”

It’s the type of exclamation you most certainly want to minimize in your firm. Right? We’ve dipped into our archive and happily returned to Andrew Trickett, his impassioned commitment to Knowledge Management, his belief in reciprocal altruism, and his solutions for minimizing such exclamations.

Andrew is Global Rail Knowledge & Information Manager at Arup. In this video, he shares how he has used his 13 years of experience in the field of Knowledge Management to meet three very important objectives:

1) Improved Profitability
2) Happier Employees
3) Less Divorce

Clearly, the implications of a healthy Knowledge Management program, fueled by a leader with a passion for his pursuit, goes well beyond the workplace.

Andrew gave this talk at KA Connect 2013 and it has been one of the most watched talks in our archive over the last several years. We hope you enjoy it as well.

Tales from the Field: Confessions of a Knowledge Manager

Andrew Trickett of Arup at KA Connect 2013

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Posted: March 11th, 2016 | Filed under: All Posts, Featured Talks | Tags: | Comments Off on Confessions of a Knowledge Manager