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Journal cover: Journal of Knowledge Management

Journal of Knowledge Management

ISSN: 1367-3270

Online from: 1997

Subject Area: Information and Knowledge Management

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A strategy for knowledge management

Document Information:
Title:A strategy for knowledge management
Author(s):Martina E. Greiner, (University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA), Tilo Böhmann, (Technical University Munich, Garching bei München, Germany.), Helmut Krcmar, (Technical University Munich, Garching bei München, Germany.)
Citation:Martina E. Greiner, Tilo Böhmann, Helmut Krcmar, (2007) "A strategy for knowledge management", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 11 Iss: 6, pp.3 - 15
Keywords:Germany, Knowledge management, Management strategy
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/13673270710832127 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited

PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to study the influence of organizational environment on the selection of knowledge management strategies. The paper focuses particularly on the relationship between business and knowledge management strategy and the success of the knowledge management initiatives.

Design/methodology/approachThis paper is a case study researching 11 German and Swiss companies. The knowledge management initiatives were categorized by six criteria (objectives, processes, problems, content, strategy, knowledge type) and their fit with the respective business strategy of the organizational unit was evaluated.

FindingsThe findings in this paper suggest a relationship between the success of knowledge management and the alignment of knowledge management and business strategy. The paper also shows that an organization whose business strategy requires process efficiency should rely primarily on a codification strategy. An organization whose business strategy requires product/process innovation should rely primarily on a personalization strategy. The most successful knowledge management projects were driven by a strong business need and with the goal to add value to the organizational unit operations.

Research limitations/implicationsThe paper shows there are limitations due to the qualitative nature of the research: logical rather than statistical conclusions, small sample size, and subjectivity of interpretations.

Practical implicationsThe paper sees that a manager should be aware of the objectives and business processes of the organizational unit and chooses the knowledge management strategy and objective in accordance to the business strategy and objective.

Originality/valueThe paper enhances understanding about the influence of organizational environment factors on the success of knowledge management initiatives.

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