KM=BS (mostly)

Subject: KM=BS (mostly)
From: Andrew Plato <intrepid_es -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 2002 12:46:29 -0800 (PST)

> Except, nobody gets around to documenting the stuff "that
> everybody knows." So, when personnel change, nobody knows
> it anymore.
> Also, after the subcontractor writes a document and moves
> on, the people left behind can't find it or can't find the
> document it references or can't find ...

That's because those people weren't doing their job. They were too busy flaking
off and attending "What does the Semicolon Mean to Me" seminars and not in
their cubes documenting their work.

> Knowledge Management tries to establish processes that
> formalize the capture and preservation of institutional
> memory so that, as the organization and personnel change,
> knowledge will not be lost or hidden.

Which is a noble and worthy goal...but if you hire people that have a
functional brain stem and place reasonable expectations on them to do their job
correctly, you shouldn't need a Knowledge Management system. People should be
documenting their work and their experiences as part of their job.

Thus the real problem isn't capturing information, its poor management. Firms
have managers that are more interested in playing golf and watching their
options tick away then actually managing. This leads to loafing employees who
think any request that makes them work harder is somehow violating their
rights. So, the employees loaf around pro-actively leveraging their
best-of-breed synergies while the managers formulate market penetrating mission
statements on the golf course. Eventually, the executives show up and ask "Why
are you morons losing money?" Rather than respond with the truth: "because we
are lazy money grubbing scum that want all the authority and pay without the
responsibility" they say "because we don't have an effective Knowledge
Management system, can we have $938302920283 to implement one?"

> As with any process, we must ask, "Is it worth all
> that overhead cost?"
> For most of us, probably not.

I can understand companies wanting to implement mechanisms to catch
information. That makes perfect sense. But, isn't that what a good tech writer
is supposed to do. Why then do you need some system when you have a person who
is supposed to be doing that...and if that person isn't doing that, then why
hasn't that person been fired or demoted?

I have real problems with "movements" that are nothing more than elaborate
smoke n' mirror games for people to once again avoid their job.

Here's a news flash folks - work sucks. You know the part of your job that is
hard, complex, and makes your wrists hurt....well that is the part of your job
you SHOULD be doing because that is adding value. You know the part of your
day where you're sitting around theorizing about semicolons and pontificating
about processes on TECHWR-L...well that's the part you SHOULDN'T be doing
because that just eats up resources.

And I can't even follow my own advice! So stop reading my stupid posts
and....you know it.

Get back to work, you!

Andrew Plato

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