This Tweet by Rosabeth Moss Kanter made us wonder then how do Knowledge Leaders learn and stay ahead of the curve. We’ve asked Knowledge Leaders to share with us how and what they are learning. Here is the feedback we received from Fezile Njokweni and Akash Singh. Fezile is the Programme Manager for Knowledge Management at the eThekwini Municipality. Akash is a Knowledge Management Consultant at MMI Holdings.
How do you stay ahead of the curve as a knowledge leader?
Fezile: As a Knowledge Leader, you need to constantly read and obtain the latest trends and developments in the world of Knowledge Management. Knowledge Brokering is also extremely important because you get to partner with various organisations and networks. In so doing you get to know what is relevant in the world out there.
Akash: Staying ahead of the curve and being up to date with all trends is easier said than done. What I find that helps me in my role as a knowledge management consultant is being practical, focusing on the detail, asking the right questions and then helping people to craft tailor-made solutions to address their knowledge needs.
What are the new areas of expertise we need to develop as knowledge leaders?
Fezile: I think as Knowledge Leaders we need to learn more about the knowledge economy (and be able to interpret the Knowledge Index – KI and Knowledge Economy Index – KEI). The 4th Industrial Revolution is upon and we need more expertise in the field of Information and Communication Technology.
Akash: Personally, I have grown my skills in facilitating requirements discussions better and I have now started to focus on understanding education, training and development (ETD) better as I plan on moving more into the space of online learning and knowledge management where I hope to influence the way we train and equip staff to be more effective in any of the roles they are expected to perform.
How, when and where do you learn?
Fezile: I often make time to learn and this is often blended with my work duties. Learning is often both academic and non-academic…and I often pursue both aspects.
Akash: Some of the resources I find useful are the articles and research from the Corporate Executive Board (CEB) and their Corporate Leadership Council (CLC). The understanding of the articles based on people and culture are critical in any initiative. In my opinion future KM practitioners and leaders need to grow skills in terms of change management, understanding culture and facilitating online learning.
What was your most significant learning as knowledge leader recently?
Fezile: The most significant learning recently has been the writings of David Skyrme and the European Commission on Knowledge Management.
Akash: The biggest hurdle that I think we face is the understanding and time from business to focus on what is necessary to ensure IP remains within a company and knowledge and skills transfer happen.
Smart leaders know what they don’t know. Learning is a constant process throughout your professional life, and it doesn’t stop when you’ve become a team leader. Make sure to never stop looking for opportunities for professional development, and pass on the wisdom you’ve learned to your people.