Goal Mapping – using words and imagery for goal setting

How to turn your dreams into realities – based on the incredible work of Brian Mayne, who walked the walk and talked the talk.

Goals are the sparks that light the fire of our intention. They are the fuel that keeps our dreams alive, the determining factor that makes the difference between surrender and persistence!

Where traditional goal setting techniques focus on left-brain words, only using endless repetition. Goal Mapping uses words and imagery – the language of the subconcious. It is a skill for achievement in all areas of life.

Goal setting is a natural function of the brain. Making a decision triggers a subconscious process that transforms the decision into a deed. Learning the most effective way to set goals is the number one prerequisite for success in any endeavour, for any individual, team, or organisation. This is a wholebrain approach to goal setting.

Duration: This is a half day workshop, is facilitated by Lynn Vermaak. Delegates are shown the whole-brain way of making and setting goals so that they can actually achieve them. This is a hands-on workshop.

Looking EAST with personas to identify fresh ideas for improving knowledge cultures

We all know the importance of a positive knowledge culture. You can have the best systems, the best practices, and the best processes but in the end it is the people that do Knowledge Management – create, capture, access, use and share knowledge

You are invited to join our next Knowledge Hangout where  we will identify typical pro- and anti-behavioral patterns when it comes to Knowledge Management and Organisational Learning in our organisations.

We will learn how to synthesise our discovery and insights into personas. Participants will have the opportunity to identify and shape practical ideas to implement that will amplify productive behaviour patterns and dampen less desired behaviours.


We will be guided by the EAST framework to enable us to find
practical ideas. The EAST framework is built around four simple ways to apply behavioural insights, namely Make it Easy, Make it Attractive, Make it Social, Make it Timely.




Who should attend:
Anyone who is involved with, and cares about productive knowledge behaviours in organisations – knowledge managers and knowledge champions, L&D specialists, collaboration champions, Enterprise Social Network champions, community managers, facilitators of Communities of Practices, communication practitioners, trainers.

ISO 9001 (2015) and ISO for KM? What is in it for KM?

The KM Community is looking in anticipation at the progress of  the publication of a set of KM Standards by ISO. Various meetings and deliberations are taking place across the globe discussing KM Standards. In South Africa, a KM Standards Committee (TC 170) has been established and they are currently busy to finalise the Strategic Business Plan that will guide the process going forward.

For the first time globally, KM can now officially claim compliance and mandatory relevance with the inclusion of clauses pertaining to Organisational Knowledge in ISO 9001 (2015). What is the opportunity for KM? Do we take ownership of these clauses?

Paul Corney suggests that the adoption of KM standards has the potential to become a game changer for Knowledge Management professionals providing a clear rationale for future KM Programs.

You are invited to join our first online Knowledge Hangout where Paul Corney, Khulane Chauke, and Refiloe Mabaso will discuss the ISO developments pertaining to KM, and what this means for KM going forward. We will also look at what KM professionals can leverage these developments now already, even though the KM standards are still under development.

Click here to register for this online event.

A case for raising standards: home and away (Paul Corney, 20 September 2016)

Current situation on standards for knowledge management (presentation by David Williams, 8 July 2016)

Call for Participation: SA KM Standard (Kholane Chauke)



The search for legitimacy for Knowledge Management

The legitimacy of the many practices collected under the Knowledge Management umbrella, such as Lessons Learned and After Action Reviews is accepted and frequently references in many contexts. Many of these practices are included in methodologies, such as project management frameworks. The ability to learn from failures and successes is regarded as being part of progressive leadership in an organisation (see recent articles in the Harvard Business Review). We also read frequently in business literature about the virtues of effective thinking skills, the need for the orchestration of collaboration, improvement of decision-making and facilitation and development of innovation readiness (incl creative thinking skills). One could ask then why is it that the Knowledge Management professional feel they still need to fight for strategic relevance and support in organisations? Why the ongoing search or legitimacy?

What is the then the legitimacy concern pertaining to Knowledge Management? When asking this question, one response could well be that “KM is dead”. Another response could be that KM is now embedded in our way of working, and not regarded as a distinct and separate function in our organisation anymore. There may still be KM professionals in dedicated roles, and often then found in a ‘Centre of Excellence’. But the organisation does not practice Knowledge Management as such.

legitimacyIf we look at the definitions of legitimacy in the picture on the left, the practices encapsulated in KM is regarded as valid. We are acting and competing in a Knowledge Economy and thus knowledge practices should be expected to be valued.  And in some contexts (such as Project Management) certain knowledge practices are rule driven and there is a sense of conformity, as it is embedded in the requirements of methodologies.

Which brings me back to the question. What is the then the legitimacy concern pertaining to Knowledge Management? APQC defines KM as a systemic effort.  And that is the legitimacy the KM community is looking for – the recognition, validation and requirement of a systemic approach – such as systemic management of HR, Finances and facilities (and other core resources and functions).  This is supported by questions such as what has happened to the Chief Knowledge Officer or Director of Knowledge Management? Others voice their concerns and frustrations that KM is often seen and practices on an operational and maybe tactical level that fails on a strategic level.

The development of ISO standards for Knowledge Management will provide an argument, framework and instrument to legitimise Knowledge Management as a systemic approach by means of compliance to principles and requirements. It is expected that these standards should underpin conformity and validity for Knowledge Management as a systemic effort. Will this be enough? My understanding is also that these standards will be more descriptive, and not prescriptive. It will, however, provide a reputable reference as being an ISO standard. It could provide the substance for (more comprehensive) inclusion in strategic plans, likewise as Quality Management.

I am also pondering what this would mean if KM is reduced to a compliance-driven effort? Will we see the same kind of discussion that you see in Quality Management? What can we learn from Quality Management? Is this referral to Quality Management even valid? I realise I am framing, and would appreciate your input in providing relevant frames for the discussion.

I am looking forward to the discussion about the meaning, contribution and potential value of ISO standards in KM in our Knowledge Hangout tomorrow with Paul Corney, Kholane Chauke & Refiloe Mabaso.

In a next post I will reflect on another dimension of legitimacy that is found in a professional society and/or community of practice. Other questions that are also raised include asking if there can be a standard for a field that is still evolving?


A related discourse is about Certification in KM.  Stan Garfield asks:  Are you certifiable in knowledge management?  This piece includes many aspects to also consider when discussion standards for KM.

KM is now officially linked to Quality Management in ISO 9001 (2015)

For the first time, organisational knowledge and its management are a core part of ISO certification requirement. Will this be a game changer projecting Knowledge Management as a mandatory thing to do?

Clause 7.1.6. Knowledge

Determine the knowledge necessary for the operation of its processes and to achieve conformity of products and services.

This knowledge shall be maintained and made available to the extent necessary.
When addressing changing needs and trends, the organization shall consider its current knowledge and determine how to acquire or access any necessary additional knowledge and required updates.

The following notes are also included:

NOTE 1: Organizational knowledge is knowledge specific to the organization; it is generally gained by experience. It is information that is used and shared to achieve the organization’s objectives.

NOTE 2: Organizational knowledge can be based on: a) Internal Sources (e.g., intellectual property, knowledge gained from experience, lessons learned from failures and successful projects, capturing and sharing undocumented knowledge and experience; the results of improvements in processes, products and services); b) External Sources (e.g., standards, academia, conferences, gathering knowledge from customers or external providers).

This is not a KM standard, only a requirement for KM. It basically states that organisation need to give proper attention to organisation knowledge in context of quality of product and services.

Play the Bird Island game: a knowledge management simulation

Engaging people in the value that Knowledge Management can bring is a perennial problem. Be part of the Bird Island Simulation to show the value of KM.

How do you turn sceptics into believers? Simply, you allow them to experience the value that KM can bring, through an interactive, measurable and fun way.
Special launch price of R650.00 (excl VAT) per person.

Limited places available. Book now to be part of this!

Light lunch will be served.

Meerkat in Action – Learning from Nature

I love animals and took this picture of a Meerkat family at Rietvlei Nature Reserve, Pretoria, South Africa.

Meerkats live in very harsh conditions across Africa but they are capable to adopt very smart survival strategies, which is mainly based on mutual trust. “One member is assigned the job of guard while the mob feeds. As soon as they spot any danger, they alert the whole clan, which then has enough time to run for safety.” Meerkat are part of the Mongoose family, but have evolved in the Southern part of Africa and learned how to survive in extremely harsh environments.

For Meerkats, it is all about trust; one slip of alerting the mob can be the difference between life and death.

From a knowledge management perspective, due to uncertainties, threats and constraints, we are also required to work in “harsh” conditions and need smart knowledge management strategies to survive.

What can we learn?

Words like “Trust, Social, collaboration, teamwork, caretakers, stay safe from predators. Meerkats are very good at digging (knowledge leaders need to dig deep!), immune to certain types of venom (don’t take it personally). Have excellent eyesight, they can spot predators at great distance and have ample time to react (knowledge leaders need to have a good vision, stand tall and look at the bigger picture and change their strategy at exactly the right time). Meerkats are lovable.. Knowledge leaders need to be admired as well.
Feel free to add your lessons to the list.

Together we grow knowledge leadership

A knowledge leader (or champion) is widely recognised as the person who is setting the direction for knowledge management and driving it forward.
David Skyrme

Do you see yourself as a knowledge leader? The following are just a few of the key roles for a knowledge leader that were discussed at the Knowledge Leadership Roundtable at the Southern African Knowledge Management Summit.

Being able to close the strategic gaps – ask “what are the business challenges?” and bring knowledge management to bear on directly addressing those.
The future role of the knowledge leaders is as facilitators or instigators of KM across the organisation – collaborating and leading collaboration across organisational silos.
Leading innovation management, bringing the experience and principles of knowledge management into innovation management.

In essence, it is about taking responsibility and building trust, amongst our profession, as well as in our different organisations.

Please add to the list, we would love to hear your thoughts on this.

Follow us also on Facebook for more insights and inspirations regarding Knowledge Leadership – http://facebook.com/thinkingknowledge.

What’s in a title or position?

When I started my career in knowledge management nearly 20 years ago, I started to build a network with people I admired within the knowledge management field. The leaders in Knowledge Management. I admired them for their insight and leadership.

At that stage I had only one thing in mind, and that was to also become a leader within the field of Knowledge Management. I wanted to get the title and status within my organisation.

After a discussion with my mentor, he explained to me that “leadership” is not always about a position or a title.

“You are already making waves within the knowledge management field in a very gentle way, he said, the passion and dedication you show and the confidence you have while doing it is making you a little leader. We need more little leaders in the company”.

A little leader?

It took me a while to figure out what he meant by a little leader, until one day when the penny finally dropped for me.

You don’t need fancy titles, positions or status to be a leader. You need people to follow you, believe in your vision and trust you. You need people to reach out to you and look up at you. You need to be the “go to” person. When you inspire and motivate others to act you are a leader!

Nelson Mandela confirmed this theory with his quote a few years later “It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.”

A little leader leads mostly from behind.

As a little leader I had to show I had guts, I had to take risks. My reputation was all I had.

I have learned that you don’t need fancy titles or on a certain level within an organisation to lead. Go forth and show enthusiasm for what you believe in. Inspire others. Take responsibility and ask great questions. Be a little leader.

The day I could see beyond my title and positionCommentShareShare The day I could see beyond my title and position