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Continuity Management: Preserving Corporate Knowledge and Productivity When Employees Leave

Book Description

"How can I keep knowledge from walking out the door when employees leave?" This pressing question is insightfully answered in this landmark book. Operational knowledge has never been more critical to organizational success. Knowledge loss from downsizing, imminent baby-boomer retirements, and high job turnover have created a knowledge continuity crisis that poses an unprecedented threat to organizational productivity and profits. Based on extensive research, Continuity Management solves this crucial problem of knowledge loss for managers at any organizational level by describing an effective strategy for preserving knowledge continuity between employee generations. Revolutionary in its effect, but evolutionary in its practice, continuity management is fueling a new knowledge revolution. This book is about that revolution-and how to lead it."

ADVANCE PRAISE FOR CONTINUITY MANAGEMENT

"The book you're holding can help you reverse the tide of 'corporate forgetting.' It explains how to manage the entire cycle of identifying, transferring, and harnessing your company's operational knowledge. And that's key because knowledge continuity is quickly becoming the new competitive battlefield. Tip the balance in your favor by reading this thoughtful book." —Mike Ruettgers, Executive Chairman, EMC Corporation

"This is the first book to examine in detail the loss of knowledge caused by downsizing and turnover and the first to offer a viable solution. This break-through method for maintaining knowledge continuity between employee generations will change the corporate landscape for years to come." —Murray Martin, Group President, Global Mail, Pitney Bowes Inc.

"Continuity management is the missing link in knowledge management that will mean significant increases in productivity and knowledge creation-cutting-edge thinking regarding knowledge as a corporate asset." —Newton F. Crenshaw, Vice President, Eli Lilly and Company, E.Lilly Division

"The concepts presented in Continuity Management, provide essential guidance for how soldiers can leverage the Army's knowledge, so we can adapt to each new fight and win our nation's wars." —Lieutenant General Peter Cuviello, Chief Information Officer, U.S. Army

"This is a topic that is at the top of the list for many organizations and Beazley, Boenisch, and Harden have provided a compelling way to address it in Continuity Management. They 'get it' that the knowledge that employees have is not just individual understanding, but is embedded within a community. Continuity Management is an insightful blend of individual and community responsibility for organizational knowledge." —Nancy M. Dixon, Organizational Knowledge Consultant and author of Common Knowledge

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. Introduction
    1. The Acute Threat: Catastrophic Knowledge Loss
    2. The Chronic Threat: Knowledge Depletion
    3. The Value of Knowledge
    4. Countering the Threats: Continuity Management
    5. Overview
  3. I. Knowledge Continuity in the Information Age
    1. 1. Knowledge Loss in the Information Age
      1. 1.1. Knowledge Workers
      2. 1.2. Acute Threat: The Impending Knowledge Collapse
        1. 1.2.1. The Private Sector
        2. 1.2.2. The Public Sector
      3. 1.3. Chronic Threat: Ongoing Knowledge Depletion
      4. 1.4. Countering the Threats: Continuity Management
    2. 2. Knowledge as a Capital Asset
      1. 2.1. The Knowledge Continuum
        1. 2.1.1. Data
        2. 2.1.2. Data Information
        3. 2.1.3. Information Knowledge
        4. 2.1.4. Knowledge Competency
        5. 2.1.5. Competency Wisdom
      2. 2.2. The Asset of Knowledge
      3. 2.3. Tacit Knowledge
      4. 2.4. Operational Knowledge as a Commodity
        1. 2.4.1. Components of Operational Knowledge
        2. 2.4.2. Separating Knowledge from Employees
          1. 2.4.2.1. Context
          2. 2.4.2.2. Format
          3. 2.4.2.3. Competencies
          4. 2.4.2.4. Recipients
        3. 2.4.3. Commodity to Process
      5. 2.5. The Value of Operational Knowledge
    3. 3. Knowledge Continuity: The New Management Function
      1. 3.1. The Twin Processes of Managing Knowledge
      2. 3.2. The New Function of Management
      3. 3.3. Knowledge Discontinuity Crises
        1. 3.3.1. Knowledge Vacuum
        2. 3.3.2. Knowledge Panic
        3. 3.3.3. Knowledge Bewilderment
        4. 3.3.4. Information Overload, Knowledge Deficiency
        5. 3.3.5. Knowledge Stuffing
        6. 3.3.6. Knowledge Fantasy
        7. 3.3.7. Knowledge Rigidity
      4. 3.4. The Competitive Advantages of Continuity Management
        1. 3.4.1. Speeds the Ramp-Up of New Employees
        2. 3.4.2. Results in Better Decision Making and Fewer Mistakes
        3. 3.4.3. Improves Training Effectiveness for New Employees
        4. 3.4.4. Lowers the Stress, Raises the Morale, and Increases the Commitment of Both New and Current Employees
        5. 3.4.5. Preserves Knowledge Networks
        6. 3.4.6. Focuses Employee Attention on Identifying Job-Critical Knowledge and Productivity Leverage Points
        7. 3.4.7. Prevents Knowledge Hoarding
        8. 3.4.8. Preserves Institutional Memory
        9. 3.4.9. Facilitates Knowledge Creation, Innovation, Continuous Improvement, and Organizational Learning
        10. 3.4.10. Reduces Job Turnover and Increases a Sense of Employee Value
        11. 3.4.11. Lowers Job-Turnover Costs
        12. 3.4.12. Reduces Organizational Vulnerability When Utilizing the Contingency Workforce
        13. 3.4.13. Increases Customer Confidence and Reduces Customer Attrition
        14. 3.4.14. Sustains Core Corporate Values, Competencies, and Mission
        15. 3.4.15. Increases Long-Term Organizational Effectiveness
    4. 4. The Knowledge Learning Curve
      1. 4.1. The Learning Curve
      2. 4.2. The Knowledge Learning Curve
      3. 4.3. Knowledge Continuity as Productivity Continuity
      4. 4.4. Phases of Productivity
        1. 4.4.1. Phase 1: Orientation
        2. 4.4.2. Phase 2: Assimilation
        3. 4.4.3. Phase 3: Productivity
        4. 4.4.4. Phase 4: High Performance
        5. 4.4.5. Phase 5: Departure
  4. II. Confessions of a Continuity Manager
    1. 5. Getting Started
      1. 5.1. Brett's Journal Begins
      2. 5.2. My Lunch with Andre
      3. 5.3. The Great Barrier Reefs
      4. 5.4. KC Prime Caveat
    2. 6. Six Steps to Continuity Management
      1. 6.1. Step 1: Conduct a Knowledge Continuity Assessment
      2. 6.2. Step 2: Determine the Objectives and Scope of the Continuity Management Initiative
        1. 6.2.1. Objectives of Continuity Management
        2. 6.2.2. Scope
          1. 6.2.2.1. Breadth of Knowledge Capture and Transfer.
          2. 6.2.2.2. Depth of Knowledge Capture and Transfer.
          3. 6.2.2.3. Technological Sophistication.
          4. 6.2.2.4. Support for Continuity Management Implementation.
        3. 6.2.3. Building the Business Case
      3. 6.3. Step 3: Establish Coordination Responsibility
      4. 6.4. Step 4: Plan the Continuity Management Implementation Initiative
      5. 6.5. Step 5: Create the Methodology to Harvest and Transfer the Critical Operational Knowledge
      6. 6.6. Step 6: Transfer the Operational Knowledge
    3. 7. The Knowledge Continuity Assessment
    4. 8. Designing the Knowledge Profile
      1. 8.1. Content of the Knowledge Profile
      2. 8.2. Knowledge Sections of the Knowledge Profile
      3. 8.3. Welcome to the Knowledge Profile
      4. 8.4. Knowledge Categories of the Knowledge Profile
        1. 8.4.1. Section 1: Operating Data
        2. 8.4.2. Section 2: Key Operational Knowledge
        3. 8.4.3. Section 3: Basic Operational Knowledge
        4. 8.4.4. Section 4: Background Operational Knowledge
    5. 9. Developing K-PAQ: The Knowledge Profile Analysis Questions
      1. 9.1. Techniques for Harvesting Knowledge
        1. 9.1.1. Interview
        2. 9.1.2. Questionnaire
      2. 9.2. Knowledge Profile Creation Process
        1. 9.2.1. The K-PAQ Cafeteria
      3. 9.3. K-PAQ: The Knowledge Profile Analysis Questions
      4. 9.4. Section 1: Operating Data
      5. 9.5. Section 2: Key Operational Knowledge
        1. 9.5.1. Front-Burner Issues
        2. 9.5.2. Hibernating Issues
        3. 9.5.3. Key Customers
        4. 9.5.4. Projects Pending
      6. 9.6. Section 3: Basic Operational Knowledge
        1. 9.6.1. Job Objectives
        2. 9.6.2. Primary Job Functions
        3. 9.6.3. Reporting Lines
        4. 9.6.4. Primary Job Activities (Tasks and Responsibilities)
          1. 9.6.4.1. Question Set A: Time Relationship.
          2. 9.6.4.2. Question Set B: Knowledge Identification.
          3. 9.6.4.3. Question Set C: Process Identification.
        5. 9.6.5. SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats)
        6. 9.6.6. Innovations
      7. 9.7. Section 4: Background Operational Knowledge
        1. 9.7.1. Knowledge Network
        2. 9.7.2. Skill Sets
        3. 9.7.3. Performance Evaluations
        4. 9.7.4. Completed Projects
        5. 9.7.5. Unexploited Ideas
        6. 9.7.6. Incumbent Biographies
      8. 9.8. Feedback on the Methodology
    6. 10. Developing K-Quest: The Knowledge Questionnaire
      1. 10.1. Designing the Knowledge Questionnaire
        1. 10.1.1. Content Criteria for the Knowledge Questionnaire
        2. 10.1.2. The Peer Design Team
        3. 10.1.3. Conducting the K-Quest Pilot
      2. 10.2. Rolling Out the Knowledge Questionnaire
      3. 10.3. Administering the Knowledge Questionnaire
      4. 10.4. Selecting Technology for K-Quest and the Knowledge Profile
    7. 11. Creating the Knowledge Profile
      1. 11.1. Meetings of Peer Incumbents
        1. 11.1.1. K-Quest Assessment
        2. 11.1.2. Operational Knowledge Validation and Transfer
        3. 11.1.3. Identification of Additional Knowledge for Pre-answered Questions
        4. 11.1.4. Generation of New Questions for K-PAQ
        5. 11.1.5. Expansion of Knowledge Networks
      2. 11.2. PEAK Meeting Attendance and Format
      3. 11.3. Communities of Practice
      4. 11.4. Updating the Knowledge Profile
      5. 11.5. The Lite Profile
        1. 11.5.1. Lite Profile Criteria
        2. 11.5.2. Developing the Knowledge Questionnaire Lite (K-Quest Lite)
        3. 11.5.3. Continuity Management Orientation Day for K-Quest Lite
        4. 11.5.4. Technology for K-Quest Lite
        5. 11.5.5. PEAK Meetings for K-Quest Lite
        6. 11.5.6. Lite Profile Updates
      6. 11.6. Profile Improvements
      7. 11.7. Profile Caveats
        1. 11.7.1. Start-Up Costs
        2. 11.7.2. The Value of the Profile
        3. 11.7.3. Using the Profile
      8. 11.8. Transferring the Knowledge Profile
  5. III. Knowledge Asset Management
    1. 12. Operational Knowledge Transfer and Acquisition
      1. 12.1. Knowledge Transfer and Acquisition Principles
        1. 12.1.1. Create Opportunities for Knowledge Exchange
        2. 12.1.2. Facilitate Mutual Knowledge Sharing between New Hires and the Organization
        3. 12.1.3. Transfer Both Tacit and Explicit Knowledge
        4. 12.1.4. Make Knowledge Creation a Principal Objective
        5. 12.1.5. Internalize Knowledge by Incorporation, Application, and Re-creation
        6. 12.1.6. Make Knowledge Transfer and Acquisition Demand-Driven Rather than Supply-Driven
        7. 12.1.7. Develop a People-Centered, Not Technology-Centered, Process
        8. 12.1.8. Involve Human Resources
      2. 12.2. Knowledge Transfer and Acquisition Processes
        1. 12.2.1. New Employee Orientation
        2. 12.2.2. Profile Partners
        3. 12.2.3. Newcomer Interaction with the Knowledge Profile
        4. 12.2.4. PEAK Meetings of Peer Incumbents
        5. 12.2.5. Phased Mentoring
        6. 12.2.6. Incumbent–Successor Overlap
    2. 13. Realignment of the Organizational Culture and Reward System
      1. 13.1. Realigning Organizational Culture
        1. 13.1.1. The Sources of Culture
          1. 13.1.1.1. Official Organizational Beliefs.
          2. 13.1.1.2. Unofficial Organizational Assumptions.
          3. 13.1.1.3. Organizational Norms and Values.
          4. 13.1.1.4. Human Resources Department.
          5. 13.1.1.5. Organizational Rewards.
          6. 13.1.1.6. Rituals and Ceremonies.
          7. 13.1.1.7. Initiations and Rites of Passage.
          8. 13.1.1.8. Organizational Structure.
          9. 13.1.1.9. Myths and Stories.
          10. 13.1.1.10. Jargon.
          11. 13.1.1.11. Metaphors.
        2. 13.1.2. Shifting the Culture
      2. 13.2. Realigning the Organizational Reward System
        1. 13.2.1. Extrinsic Rewards
          1. 13.2.1.1. Promotion.
          2. 13.2.1.2. Compensation.
          3. 13.2.1.3. Recognition.
        2. 13.2.2. Intrinsic Rewards
    3. 14. Continuity Management in Practice
      1. 14.1. Knowledge Continuity Initiatives
      2. 14.2. A Paradigm Shift
  6. References
  7. Acknowledgments
  8. About the Authors