APQC President Carla O’Dell refers to communities of practice as the “killer app” for knowledge management. By bringing people together around common areas of interest, communities help organizations achieve a multitude of knowledge-focused goals, from capturing lessons learned and validating best practices to identifying experts and answering tricky technical questions.
APQC’s latest report on communities, Positioning Communities of Practice for Success, outlines seven drivers of community success.
- Identify and charter communities with explicit business objectives.
- Recognize that community leaders are a critical success factor. Clearly define the community leader’s role.
- Acknowledge the influence of the KM core team on the overall success of the community strategy.
- Use a variety of methods to encourage participation in communities.
- Adapt communities to today’s virtual communication environment and replace face-to-face value in creative ways.
- Create a common look-and-feel for community Web sites or home pages.
- Use indicators of health and effectiveness, enlivened by success stories, to paint a complete picture of community impact.
Click the links above to read about each individual driver, or download the full report from APQC’s Knowledge Base.