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TABLE OF CONTANT | PAGE NO: | INTRODUCTION | 3 | How does COP contribute to the success of KM | 3-4 | 1.1Teamwork-How can this be related to the success of KM | 4-8 | 2.1 Sharing Of Ideas-How can this be related to the success of KM | 6-7 | 3.1 How an expert can be related to the success of KM in particular field: | 9-10 | 4.1How characteristics of cop can help to bring success to within an organisation: | 10-13 | Conclusion | 14 | Reference | 15-16 |
Communities of Practice:
How does COP contribute to the success of KM: CoPs are “groups of people who share a concern, a set of problems, a passion about a topic, and who deepen their knowledge and expertise in this area by interacting on an on-going basis” (Wenger, McDermott, & Snyder, 2002).
Three important characteristics help distinguish a CoP from other groups:
1) the domain (topic or theme to be addressed and advanced);
2) the community (members motivated by a mutual interest in the domain); and
3) the practice (ideas, tools, expertise, knowledge, and shared resources that serve to move the field of inquiry forward) (Wenger, 1998; Wenger, McDermot).
A CoP is much more informal than a work group or task force. Participants may volunteer or be assigned to a task force, but the activity usually has a specific predetermined goal and a projected time of existence (Nickols, 2003). Members of CoPs are not typically assigned, but join based on their interest in the domain and their ability to contribute to the practice. Together, the members of the community share their expertise and mutual understanding about the domain to develop greater knowledge and build the practice. Learning communities are “groups of people engaged in intellectual interaction for the purpose of learning” (Cross, 1998).
The experiential knowledge that an individual develops over time and through a variety of experiences, places, and activities can be profoundly useful in his or her own particular setting. By building on its members’ shared knowledge, a CoP can be useful in developing new ideas and new strategies. A CoP may form in response to a specific issue or need, and once that issue or need has been resolved, its members may disband the CoP or choose another issue to examine (Saint-Onge & Wallace,2003).
Studies of experiences at companies such as Xerox have demonstrated that CoPs are a very effective way for professionals to share informal or tacit knowledge gained from experience in the field. This sharing among participants results in building on current knowledge and expanding the practice (Saint-Onge & Wallace,2003).
1.1Teamwork-How can this be related to the success of KM: KNOWEDGE MANAGEMENT AND TEAM WORK: Understanding the meaning of knowledge and KM helps to lay a basis for discussion in this section. According to Nowell et al. (2002, p. 47), "knowledge creation or knowledge generation is typically an activity that is accomplished by a team of people rather than by individuals working alone". This can explain why many companies today tend to organize activities around self-contained, problem-solving and self-managing work teams. Basically, a team is a group of people who work together and share a common work objective (Dessler, 2001) by which organizations can improve the ways of developing, disseminating and applying knowledge. There is also evidence suggesting that teams typically outperform individuals when the tasks being done require multiple skills, judgment and experience (Robbins and De Cenzo, 1998).
Yet, to maximize the impact and value of teamwork is not an easy task; it is the interplay of numerous issues discussed below.
1.2 Vision, values and philosophy: To develop KM as a core competence, it requires some changes at both strategic and operational levels. On the strategic