Organizational Doctors

Just as neuroscientists work with individuals to figure out what may be physically wrong with that person’s brain, and psychologists/psychiatrists work with individuals to figure out how they can improve their mental health, the Knowledge Management practitioner works with an organization to figure out what is wrong/can be fixed in the IT infrastructure and how the organization can improve its processes.

Some KM’ers are organizational neuroscientists, specialists working exclusively in the area of technical infrastructure. These guys and gals design and build the the connections and the software that make things work. Unfortunately, very few of these folks actually know how an organization uses all this high-tech stuff, and very rarely do these folks make use themselves of what they do for others.

That is where the organizational psychologist/psychiatrist comes in. In another age, these folks were the business process re-engineers, or the TQM (shudder) people coming in to “fix” you.

While the IT piece of knowledge management is very complex, is has become much more a science than an art. The process side, on the other hand, remains very much an art, with a little science thrown in.