The eleventh step in the 12 Steps to KM Success has two parts:
- Innovate key KM processes and tools to implement the strategy and achieve the vision.
- Seek user feedback and continuously implement, improve, and iterate.
The second part was previously covered in KM Programs: Implement, Improve, and Iterate. This post addresses the first part — innovating KM processes and tools.
How to stimulate innovation
- Ask communities of practice, both internal and external, for ideas.
- Follow good examples from other organizations, such as the Netflix prize, P&G Connect & Develop, IBM Jams, and InnoCentive.
- Conduct experiments to test new methods. Use analytics to analyze the results and pick the ones that are most effective.
- Ask for suggested improvements, use rapid prototyping to try them out, and then iterate and improve.
- Enable innovation by supporting integration of diverse tools. Encourage skunk works projects.
- Encourage the formation of book clubs, discussion groups, and brainstorming sessions to get people thinking about new and better ways of doing things. Take the best ideas and implement them.
- Hold regular innovation challenges, tournaments, and jams.
- Ask people to use collaboration tools such as enterprise social networks (ESNs) to discuss ideas for improvements, new approaches, and breakthroughs.
- Invite people outside your organization to speak on calls, present at meetings, and participate in workshops. Adapt their methods for use in your organization.
- Set up prediction markets to use the wisdom of crowds to choose between alternatives.
Enable innovation by supporting integration
Supporting easy software integration enables a variety of tools to be independently developed and interconnected. For example, at HP, the following eight innovative tools were created as skunk works projects.
1. KM Stars: Incentive points system for recognizing and rewarding knowledge sharing
2. me @hp: Social networking profiles (like LinkedIn)
3. HPedia: Wiki (like Wikipedia)
4. HP Blogs: Employee blogging
5. HP Bookmarking Server: Social bookmarks
6. HP Uncut: Videos (like YouTube)
7. HP Podcasts: Podcasting platform
8. Pligg: News story submission and voting platform (like Digg and Reddit)
They were then connected by three integration tools:
1. HP Knowledge Network: Intranet portal
2. WaterCooler: RSS feed aggregator
3. Searchable: User interface to multiple search engines