KM, Enterprise 2.0 and Social Business: One and The Same

19 thoughts on “KM, Enterprise 2.0 and Social Business: One and The Same”

  1. Are KM, Enterprise 2.0 and Social Business one and the same or are the implementation requirements in business environments and the necessary change management efforts the same?

    1. Hi Joachim! Probably the latter, if you ask me! Which means, now more than ever, that we may be tackling the very same business problems / issues we had back then when KM first started. Your comment surely confirms one key statement as well with regards to the successful deployment of these social tools, which KM tools failed to deliver eventually: address and fix business problems!

      It would be interesting to see whether “Social Business” would be blending effectively into those business problems that KM identified back in the day so well, specially, as it gets more and more involvement within the corporate world with change management, which is probably that rightly embedded into the business social transformation that KM hinted back then, but that it never picked up enough steam because of how unattached it was with the business itself. Perhaps the focus on people= “social” would help address it correctly. Time will tell …

      Thanks again for the great comments and for dropping by! 🙂

  2. We saw Librarians from the 70s transform in Records Management consultants and then KM consultants and as you say 90% of those projects failed, and rightly so in my opinion. I have little regard for the KM community. KM hasn’t evolved into E2 and then Social Business. SB is driven from a compelling force from outside the firm. It can’t be stopped or silenced and the focus is on designing organisational engagement models which align with the business goals, culture, risk profile, resources and dynamic competitive environment. Of course KM mentions all those same things. But the fact is that 90% of KM projects were internally-focused, top-down and driven from the inside out. Social business, in those respects, is fundamentally different, in my opinion. Tears will be avoided the further “KM” is kept from Social Business.

    Walter @adamson

  3. Hi, Luis,
    what is in your language KM and Social Business, I am happy to read, that they share the same genes (what I like to call the idea of KM, i.e. managing knowledge for the sake of the business. Both (the manifestation of KM and Social Business) are manifestations in their respective context (e.g. time, culture, etc.)


    ps: looks like I come across as Anonymous (anyway @Geraldmeinert)

    KM is dead:

    Not seeing this is probably a cause, why people do the same mistakes, because they neglect seeing the lessons learnt in traditional KM relevant for Social Business.

  4. Hi Luis

    Surely they are not one and the same at all, and you indicate this in your final paragraph, and in your reply to Joachim’s comment.

    You said: “if folks have stated how Enterprise 2.0 is the father of Social Business I would venture to say that KM is the father and grandfather of E2.0 and Social Business, respectively” – which suggests a hierarchical relationship.

    However I don’t necessarily agree with this either; the issue is there a many (too many?) definitions of KM, and so depending on your favorite definition and how you perceive KM as a whole, you may believe it is the “father of E2.0” or not. I recently quoted David Gurteen too, I remember his Information Online keynote from 2007 vividly as he spoke about the failure of KM 1.0 and the dawn of KM 2.0 based on the use of Web 2.0 / E2.0 tools to meet KM requirements.

    I presented on where ECM fits within KM at the AIIM conference last week – my premise being that whatever your definition of KM, you need good information management as a foundation. I see E2.0 with the original Prof. McAfee model of SLATES (and Dion Hinchcliffe’s superset of FLATNESSES) as being about information sharing and collaboration – so it can help you achieve a knowledge enabled organisation, but if you think E2.0 “social” tools = KM then your going to fail as badly as your predecessors who thought the Access based Knowledge Base was the answer to everything. Bottom line, you can be a social business, without doing KM…..

    Please take a look and see what you think:

  5. Luis –

    Totally agree. The thing that caused much of the bad taste to KM was the idea that KM = Big IT system rollout. Like any large IT rollout, this approach has a high risk on failure in a complex environment. Social Media platforms – particularly cloud-based – have a much higher chance of success in a complex environment, as they support safe-fail deployment (thanks, David Snowden).

    Where (appropriate) KM and Social Media *are* identical is that they both support effective knowledge sharing, and they both depend on an environment of trust, openness and transparency for success.

    – Keith

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