Leadership ‘Best Practice’? Developing KM with Indiana CPA Society

I’m sitting in as on observer in the INCPAS Annual Business Meeting in Indiana at the moment.  Listening to their plans to respond to the wider business environment, the importance of knowledge as a resource and the potential importance for Knowledge Management to act as a response, I have a warm feeling of pride.

This is an organisation that exists to serve its membership, in this case CPAs, and we have been working with them since the turn of the year to initiate a KM programme; this has included interviews, focus groups, symposiums, the Edinburgh KM Professional Development Certificate programme and work with their KM Task Force. They even published a video, giving their members an overview of the society’s ongoing work in this area.

This organisation recognises the need for KM to act as a response to a specific need; I’ll be publishing the latest article from the INCPAS magazine in the next couple of weeks that looks at exactly what those drivers are.  More than that, the Society is willing to take its time to make the best decision not for today, but for the future.

I am often asked what it is that ultimately makes KM work.  Here it is, LEADERSHIP! This leadership team is making all the difference when it comes to success.  Some of the highlights…

  • They recognised their own weaknesses in understanding the concept, and development, of KM.
  • They didn’t expect a technology driven ‘silver bullet’.
  • They recognised the need for solutions that not only respond to their needs today, but to emerging needs of the future.
  • They are deep reflectors that want evidence to support their decision-making process and they buy-in to the need to develop their own expertise in the field of KM, not being prepared to purely rely on the knowledge of external consultants.
  • They are not frightened to explore complexity and foresight.
  • They want to lead, not only for their members, but for similar societies.
  • They have a clear vision, but they are willing to revisit this as their understanding of the challenges evolves.
  • They want to engage stakeholders and share the decision-making responsibility.
  • More importantly, they understand the risk of not taking action.
  • They understand that they will need to travel down several roads at the same time, but at different speeds.

When it comes to KM, this is a refreshing change and, if such a thing exists, this has to be an example of ‘best practice’ in KM leadership.  For me, working with this organisation is actually fun; I don’t know how else to describe it.  Three weeks ago they won an award as one of the best places to work in Indiana – from being here and working alongside them, I understand why.

I’ll keep you updated on how this project progresses because if ever a start-up KM programme was going to provide impact and return then this, for me, is it!

Now, if I can just bottle it and sell it on…. Hmmmm

Share