Session Long Project Module 1
“Snacks, Shuttles, Oil, and how they connect People across the Globe”
Coordinator Professor: Dr. Pearce
Core Professor: Dr. Wang
Knowledge sharing is not a new concept; it was noted that a business’s most important asset was its’ ability to process information, (Hayek, 1945). In the 1960s it was becoming apparent that rather than the semi-skilled production work, the amount of knowledge held by groups of individual workers was becoming more important to organizational success. This argument is supported by Drucker (1969) who stated that “Knowledge is the central capital, the cost centre and the crucial resource of the economy.” More important are: the dynamics of information and knowledge, how people assimilate it, and exchange/combine it to make new things out of it.1 Although we have realized the value and importance of knowledge management for some time now, certain companies have gone above and beyond in establishing initiatives to ensure KM is a firm foundation in which to continue to grow their business upon. The three companies I am going to discuss today, which have done exactly that, are Frito-Lay, NASA, and British Petroleum.
Frito-lay realized they had a KM problem when it came to there attention that they had no centralized system for finding and consolidating corporate and customer sales account information. It takes more than good flavor and a hearty crunch to sell the salty snacks churned out at Frito-Lay and corporate executives knew that capturing best practices and corporate information would give employees something they could really sink their teeth into. But information was scattered around the company in disparate systems, and there was no easy way for the geographically dispersed sales force to get at it.
"We had knowledge trapped in files everywhere," says Mike Marino, vice president