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Knowledge Works: The Handbook of Practical Ways to Identify and Solve Common Organizational Problems for Better Performance by Jane McKenzie, Christine van Winkelen

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Chapter 16

MOVING FROM HARD SELL TO COMPELLING BUY

Snapshot

“Selling solutions” to improve knowledge flows in organizations does not always work; focusing on what motivates people to engage with the initiatives themselves can be more effective. To get this kind of buy-in requires clarity about the outcomes of the initiative and what those mean for the target audience. It also involves recognizing the barriers to people’s engagement and identifying resources to address those which realistically can be overcome. Finally, it involves understanding the filtering patterns that affect how people receive information and tailoring communications in the most effective way to suit the predominant patterns of the audience.

A four-part, eight-step process is offered to help you systematically design your proposition so that knowledge-related initiatives will become “compelling buys” for their target audiences.

Why this Matters

Knowledge sharing challenges well-established assumptions about the value of power and authority, responsibility, leadership, hierarchy, competition, and cooperation.1 Also, assumptions about how to manage tangible resources have been so deeply ingrained that people don’t necessarily accept that new ways are needed to manage knowledge. Despite the evident worth of initiatives to those who create them and those who intuitively “get” what it means to be a knowledge-based organization, all too often, for a variety of reasons, knowledge-related initiatives fail to deliver ...

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