Business is a Conversation: An Introduction to the Gurteen Knowledge Café David Gurteen introduces a tool called knowledge café that can be used to share tacit knowledge and how this can be applied to teams, communities or in silos to question entrenched assumptions, help facilitate learning and to gain a deeper understanding of a subject through conversation.
The role of the knowledge café
Knowledge sharing is a key issue for knowledge management and for organisational success. But real knowledge sharing requires an open mindset. In addition, it continues to be a challenge for many organisations, where it can be difficult to even get people to talk openly to one another about their specific interests and responsibilities. One way of energising an organisation to take real advantage of conversation and consequent tangible business benefits is the use of knowledge cafés. A knowledge café is an effective vehicle for opening up conversations and discussions that lead to a deeper understanding of the business world, which in turn leads to improved decision making, new ways of working and innovation. A knowledge café is a tool that is used to share tacit knowledge. It can be used within teams, communities of practice or across silos to question entrenched assumptions, to help facilitate learning from others and to gain a deeper collective understanding of a subject through conversation. It is not just about talking and networking, although these are secondary benefits. It’s also about allowing people to engage each other in "dialogue" with the aim of learning from each other, rather than entering into unproductive debate and attempting to impose their views on each other. Those situations invariably end in failure and frustration.