KM Cluster
1329 Taylor Street #12
San Francisco, CA 94108
415 902 9676

Date: Mon, 21 Jun 2004 10:34:19 -0700

03 00050 60 04062101

Mr. Rod Welch
The Welch Company
440 Davis Court #1602
San Francisco, CA 94111 2496
Subject:   Knowledge Leadership - June 25, 2004

Dear Rod,

Thanks for your message [on June 20, 2004] and nice to hear from you!
I must admit finding your occasional epistles jarring and a bit of an ambush. You intransigence and dogma concerning knowledge management is also somewhat offensive and counterproductive.
If you ask around, particularly with the distinguished people you mentioned and the luminaries you CC:ed, you will probably find there is a strong consensus that rigid, analytic and mechanistic thinking styles of the Industrial Era are ill-suited for a knowledge-based organizations and economies.
At best, the industrial revolution is only 200 years old and the concept of management is less than a 100 years old. Your remark, "...past two (2) mellineia (sic) that guides the practice of management..." is just plain silly.
"I think the next century will be the century of complexity." --Stephen Hawking
In fact, all one needs to do is read your disturbing message for prima facie evidence that rigid, mechanistic and textual approaches to knowledge-based thinking and opportunities and model are patently obsolete.
I rest my case.
Rather, it has been discovered that entirely new, holistic, social, biological, complex, networked structures, system thinking and conversation offer far better models of how the knowledge-based world actually works.
"Conversations outside the organization are the chief mechanism for making change and renewal an ongoing part of the company culture. One of the many paradoxes of the Knowledge Economy is that conversation -- traditionally regarded as a waste of time -- is in fact the key resource for competing on time. Companies that practice the art of external conversation are far better equipped to shape the new knowledge environment to which slower competitors must then respond." - Alan Webber, Harvard Business Review
Considerably value is created for people though the very specific, clearly stated goals and objectives, themes, conversations and named speakers described in the announcement and through the ongoing community conversation.
That you would say, "I object to the negative tone of the announcement that spends a lot of time saying what will not be presented...," is just plain counterproductive belligerence. Can you offer one specific example of "...what will not be presented..." on Friday? "Methinks thou protest too much." -- W. Shakespeare. ..
In other words, give me a break.
I urge you to suspend your disbelief and join in the conversation to unlearn some of your discontinued notions and illegitimate beliefs of knowledge and knowledge management.
For your convenience, from the announcement, here again are just some of the specifics of future-focused material that will be covered. (You must have missed them in the prior message...)

Agenda Highlights...
Bill Ives and Adriaan Jooste of Deloitte will lead a conversation on four specific knowledge leadership practices:
  • Organizational connectors and connection places
  • Preventing knowledge from walking out the door
  • Supporting the idea practitioners
  • Staying out of the innovation engine room
They will draw on case examples to illustrate Next Practices(tm) in these four areas. Complementary relationships with work by Davenport & Prusak and Senge, Scharmer, Jaworski & Flowers will be discussed.

The others sessions include:
Robin Athey, Deloitte Research, on Emergent Ideas in Leadership

Michael Burtha, Applied Collaborative Strategies, on Enterprise Knowledge Leadership

Curt Linberg, Plexus Institute, on Knowledge Stories and Complexity
David Hawthorne and Richard Azzarello, on Talent Visualization Systems
This will be a lively, exciting day of conversation and learning from the future. Hope to see you and others there! (Pre-registration in advance is required.)
Finally, I would be delighted to offer KM methods for "solving gridlock in transportation, technology, leadership, health care, national security." You can start by rejecting the mechanistic, analytic, linear and reductionist, 'managerial' thinking that has created these problems. Remember, "No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it." --Albert Einstein. The solutions will have little/nothing to do with adding "intelligence to information that grows knowledge..." (?)

John Maloney
T: 415.902.9676
F: 415.276.6074
IM: jheuristic
Post Script

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