I am getting comfortable with today's mind-shift from developing a KM strategy to developing a strategy for incorporating and resourcing KM.  I will still need principles in this process somewhere.  So far, I have four.  I drafted the following four principles a while back, and I think they serve as a touchstone - one of the many ways I try to stay honest. 

  1. The company matters more than the sum of any of its parts
  2. I must learn and share information in order to do my job
  3. I don't have to know where information is located in order to find it
  4. I need to trust in the accuracy, quality, and timeliness of the information I find

I'm certain there are more, this still feels like information management principles instead of KM, and I wonder if my colleagues in Security and Contracts have similar principles posted to their wall.  I am trying to get us away from "see what Billy thinks about this" when it comes to policies or initiatives.  We are still too personality driven, and while that is useful for some things, we do need to write down shared principles at some point if we aim to grow at the pace expected. 

As I go forward, then, I'm using these principles to guide my advice and recommendations regarding our deployment of information systems.  That's what I get being located under the CIO, the baseline context will be IT for the near term.

It strikes me that these were easy to write, precisely because we have so far to go in fixing our internal information management processes and systems.  It reminds me of my three-month stint in a West Texas town.  Having come from New York, I was unnerved by the tornado logo in the corner of my television screen one evening.  In speaking to a neighbor, they confirmed that meant there was a good chance of tornadic activity in the area - and no, he didn't have a basement either.

"Well, who does have a basement in this town?  Where are the shelters?"

"Over there in the new section, called Grape Creek.  Those houses all have basements."


"Because Grape Creek was leveled a few years back by a tornado..."