Monday, 18 July 2011

Knowledge Management or Experience Management?

One of our clients has contracted us to provide them with guidance into "Experience Management".

The term "Experience Management is not a commonly defined term, so I was very interested to understand what they meant by the term (and they weren't talking about managing customer experience, which is a different field). It seems they have already investigated Knowledge Management, and have been provided with Knowledge Management solutions that deal with content management and the management of information. However even with this service, they realise that there is still something missing, namely learning from experience, sharing of experience, and the application of experience to decision making. This is the "Experience Management" they want to introduce.
I think they are wisely navigating their way through the confusion around Knowledge Management; the confusion between knowledge and information, and between Knowledge Management and content management.

On the one hand, according to Einstein, Knowledge is experience; everything else is information.

On the other hand, there is a common model known as the DIKW model, which builds up through data and information, to knowledge, and then on to Wisdom. I don't particularly like the model, and it has many prominent detractors, but it also has a strong following.
So is knowledge based only on experience, or is it based only on information?

Davenport and Prusak define knowledge as "a fluid mix of framed experience, values, contextual information, expert insight and grounded intuition that provides an environment and framework for evaluating and incorporating new experiences and information". They see both experience and information as inputs to knowledge. In BP, a recent definition of knowledge was the application of experience to information.
Maybe we can draw a diagram such as the one above, where the Data/Information/Knowledge continuum (let's forget about Wisdom, that is something completely different), is parallelled by an Experience/Knowledge continuum.

This particular client believes they have support for the content and information side, but they still support for the Experience side.

What does Experience Management look like?
To be honest, it looks a lot like Knowledge Management, with the content management side removed.
It looks pretty familiar, but has a clear focus on experience, on tacit, and on knowledge pull.


Harold Jarche said...

Now compare this with Lilia's PKM framework:

tisonlyme said...

seems to me to be a link; it seems to me that Lilia's framework is an input to the 'experinence' box in Nick's model above.

there would also be links from 'data' and 'information' to the 'ideas' segment

just a thought, or two really
Mark (@mark_harbor)

Nick Milton said...

a few typos corrected, and a reference to knowledge retention added - thanks to Charles De Rosa for spotting these

liuxuehui said...

As a member of this client, I have to say, Nick's diagram did conveyed the difference made by having or not having the experience. Simple and useful.

Bob Hilarides said...

What a nice, simple distillation of the need to integrate explicit and tacit, culture and technology, push and pull. It's time to quit debating which is more important and focus on leveraging both sides!

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