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Lessons learned to organisational learning - presentation to members of the South East branch

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On 11 February 2016, the APM South East branch was pleased to host the half day event ‘From lessons learned to organizational learning – how knowledge management puts learning into practice’.  The event took place at the 18th century Best Western Donnington Manor Hotel tucked away in Dunton Green located just outside Sevenoaks, Kent.  The mix of European staff served those who attended with a cheerful disposition, and were ready to assist in every way, starting proceedings with a delicious buffet lunch served in the Osteria Chartwell Restaurant.

Judy Payne of Hemdean Consulting and Chair of the APM Knowledge SIG kicked off the afternoon with an icebreaker quiz, asking participants to define what knowledge is, what ‘lessons learned’ meant to them and to give examples of organizations who they felt were good at managing knowledge and learning. Judy continued by expanding on the phrase that ‘knowledge is more than information’, and explored the definition of knowledge management (KM) as ‘a multi-disciplinary approach to improving organizational outcomes and learning by optimizing the use of knowledge’ – KM is about creating the time, the trust and the fairness, that constitutes an environment where people want to learn. Judy’s Powerpoint slides presented a colourful and persuasive visual encouragement to regularly review lessons learned repositories, whilst understanding the benefits and limitations of such tools. The lessons in databases can be analysed and the resulting insights acted on, but information in databases lacks context – it is always better to talk to the people who created the lessons than to rely on the written version. Context is everything!

Michael Norton, Community and knowledge manager, Knowledge Hub,  took the stage introducing participants to The Knowledge Hub, a public sector digital platform for collaboration, consisting online Communities of Practice of 2.1 million people, 700 services and 433 local authorities.  Michael explained each community, or network, contained individuals with common problems or interests who come together and explore ways of working, identifying solutions and sharing good practice and ideas.  The Hub has been successfully used by over 100,000 members across a broad range of organizations, all interested in public sector service delivery and improvement.  Hub members include the likes of policy makers, politicians, teachers.

A brief summary on Nick Gaunt's presentation together with his presentations will be published shortly.

This event comes with a high recommendation.  Who would have thought that discussions would be so thought provoking, inspiring innovative ways of sharing and embedding knowledge within the likes of communities, organizations, forums, focus groups.  The two available presentations can be viewed below and on the APM Resource page of our website together with the Knowledge Cafe results.

South East Branch Knowledge cafe from Association for Project Management


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