The Effect of Organizational Culture on the Implementation of Knowledge Management

Abstract

The focus of the majority of knowledge management (KM) research to date has been on advanced technology and techniques used to facilitate knowledge sharing (Davenport and Prusak, 1998). A knowledge organization has been defined as “...an entity that realizes the importance of its knowledge, internal and external, to the organization, and applies techniques to maximize the use of this knowledge to its employees, shareholders and customers” (Liebowitz and Beckman, 1998). However, any firm interested in making the transition to becoming a knowledge organization has to ensure that its culture is aligned with the requirements for KM success. Not to do so risks KM being underutilized, ignored, or abandoned by the firm’s employees. As attractive as KM is for enhancing an organization’s operations, many commonly agree that there is an important precondition. Davenport (1997) says that twothirds of a firm’s KM efforts should focus upon organizational and cultural issues. Rifkin (1996) quotes Bob Buckman as saying “What’s happened here [successful use of KM at Buckman Laboratories] is 90% culture change. You have to change the way you relate to one another. If you can’t do that, you won’t succeed.” Mizumori (1998) reports “The greatest challenge to implementing effective Knowledge Management is to transition Knowledge Hoarders into Knowledge Sharers.” Thus, one needs to understand what the culture of the firm is, and one needs to understand whether or not this culture will enable KM or hinder KM. Schein (1992) defines corporate culture as “A pattern of shared basic beliefs that the group learned as it solves its problems of external adaptation and internal integration, that has worked well enough to be considered valid, and

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@inproceedings{Tuggle2000TheEO, title={The Effect of Organizational Culture on the Implementation of Knowledge Management}, author={Francis D. Tuggle and Nancy C. Shaw}, booktitle={FLAIRS Conference}, year={2000} }