Knowledge Management Cycle

In today’s business scenario where there is lot of competition, only source of lasting is Knowledge. It is argued that knowledge management is a necessity due to changes in the environment such as increasing globalization of competition, speed of information and knowledge aging, dynamics of both product and process innovations, and competition through buyer markets. Knowledge management promises to help companies to be faster, more efficient, or more innovative than the competition. Also, the term ‘‘management” implies that knowledge management deals with the interactions between the organization and the environment and the ability of the organization to react and act

Various researchers then gave the various definitions on Knowledge Management and still it’s the buzzword today. Knowledge management is the process through which we can manage human centered assets efficiently and effectively. The function of knowledge management is to guard and grow knowledge owned by individuals, and where possible, transfer the asset into a form where it can be more readily shared by other employees in the company. KM refers to activities aimed at enhancing knowledge processing. These activities are interventions designed to affect how knowledge processing is done. The tools, techniques, and strategies to retain, analyze, organize, improve, and share business expertise. Knowledge management promotes an integrated approach to identifying, capturing, retrieving, sharing and evaluating enterprise information assets. These information assets may include database, policies, procedures and documents and as well as uncaptured tacit expertise and experience stored in the heads of individual workers.

Knowledge management is the information having some intent that can be interpreted and made available.… Read the rest

Edgar Schein’s Career Anchors

Edgar Schein, one of the founders in the field in modern organizational psychology, pointed out that, every one of us has a particular orientation towards work. As a result of which, we all approach our work with a set of priority and certain values. This concept is known as ‘Career Anchors’. It represents one’s combination of perceived career competence and includes talents, motives, values and attitudes that give stability and direction to a person’s career. It is regarded as the ‘motivator’ or ‘driver’ of that person. The Career Anchor depicts one’s highest priority needs and the factors of work lives one may not be willing to give up. Many people are not really clear about their need and competencies and make an inappropriate career choice, that lead to dissatisfaction and frustration at work. Knowing their Career Anchor properly, people develop sufficient insight to make intelligent and appropriate career choices.

Importance and Types of Career Anchors

Almost all organisations claim to serve the best interests of employees. In practice, they “manage” their workers careers with the best interest of the organization, not the employees. Very often, people tend to select a wrong career and find it incompatible at workplaces with their true values, resulting in feelings of unrest and discontent and lost in productivity. This necessitates becoming self-reliant, to choose and manage one’s career.

Career Anchors help an individual in conceptualizing his own perceived career. It encompasses one’s core areas of competence, motives, and career values. Very often, this perceived career anchor goes against organisational career plans and employees develop a sense of dissonance or certain incongruity about their career plans.… Read the rest

Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions

Dr. Greet Hofsted had conducted a comprehensive study and explained how culture influences the values at the work place. He worked as a psychologist in IBM from 1967 to 1973. In the time of working in IBM he has collected the analyzed data from aver 100000 individual from more than forty different countries. To the above study he made some additions and he developed four dimensions and later on he added fifth dimension that is long term outlook. Geert Hofstede’s dimensions investigation can support the trade individual in enhance understanding the intercultural variance within regions.

“Culture is more often a source of conflict than of synergy. Cultural differences are a nuisance at best and often a disaster.” – Dr. Geert Hofstede

The different dimensions of the Geert hofstede are explained below they are

  1. Power distance index (PDI)
  2. Individualism (IDV)
  3. Masculinity (MAS)
  4. Uncertainty avoidance index (UAI)
  5. Long term orientation (LTO)

Power distance index (PDI)

This dimension explains about the degree of equality or inequality between the people in the society of a nation. A high power ranking shows the inequalities of power and wealth which have been allowed to grow with in the society. The societies are mostly following a caste system which does not permits upward mobility of its citizens. Power distance is defined as “the extent to which the less powerful members of institutions and organisations within a country expect and accept that power is distributed unequally”.

Individualism/collectivism (IDV)

The second dimension of hofstede is individualism/collectivism. The concept in this dimension is discussed most frequently and it is the researched concept.… Read the rest

Fundamentals of Internal Auditing

What is Internal Auditing?

Internal Auditing is an independent, objective assurance and consulting activity designed to add value and improve an organization’s operations. It helps an organization accomplish its objectives by bringing a systematic, disciplined approach to evaluate and improve the effectiveness of risk management, control, and governance processes. Internal auditing is a catalyst for improving an organization’s governance, risk management and management controls by providing insight and recommendations based on analyses and assessments of data and business processes. With commitment to integrity and accountability, internal auditing provides value to governing bodies and senior management as an objective source of independent advice.

The Institute of Internal Auditors has defined internal auditing as follows: “Internal auditing is the independent appraisal activity within an organization for the review of the accounting, financial and other operation as a basis for protective and constructive service to the management. It is a type of control, which functions by measuring and evaluating the effectiveness of other types of control. It deals primarily with accounting and financial matters but it may also properly deal with matters of an operating nature.”

Here are various definitions of Internal Auditing prevailing, which can be stated as follows:

  1. Internal Audit is a management tool, performed by employees of the organization to ensure correctness in accounting data and to detect fraud by way of periodical review of organizational system and procedures.
  2. Internal Auditing is a continuous and systematic process of examining and reporting the operations and records of a concern by its employees or external agencies specially assigned for this purpose.
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Keiretsu – The Japanese Business Network System

The cooperation may be witnessed in highly competitive business environment. Tata and Fiat have arrangements in relations to cars. Such cooperation is not necessarily restricted to the organizations producing or dealing in same product or services. They may identify some common interest for cooperation between them. A cold drink manufacture may enter into arrangement with a chain of restaurants to offer its beverages to the clients of restaurants. Lately, various credit card companies are entering into arrangements with other businesses to launch co-branded credit cards. Such arrangements help in reaching greater number of customers.

The benefits of cooperation are also seen in Japan, where large cooperative networks of businesses are known as Kieretsus. Keiretsu, also known as Kigyo Shudan, is an umbrella term that describes various highly complex and interdependent relations. These are formed in order to enhance the abilities of individual number businesses to compete in their respective industries.

A small history………Prior to the Second World War Japan was dominated by four large monopolistic organisations, Mitsubishi, Mitsui, Sumitomo and Yasuda, called Zaibatsu. Post war controls introduced by the United States aimed at creating a competitive environment through dissolution of the Zaibatsu. This policy continued until 1952, when the Japanese government relaxed its constraints on economic considerations, but maintaining its stance on monopolistic power. Subsequently some of the former Zaibatsu reformed into these enterprise groups called Keiretsu.

Keiretsus are futile families of firms with ambiguous boundaries that separate ostensibly independent firms which are in reality closely related. A single Keiretsu usually encompasses a large group of firms in different industries which maintain close relationships.… Read the rest

Business Process Reengineering (BPR)

History of Business Process Reengineering (BPR) Concept

In 1990, Michael Hammer, a former professor of computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), published an article in the Harvard Business Review, in which he claimed that the major challenge for managers is to obliterate non-value adding work, rather than using technology for automating it. This statement implicitly accused managers of having focused on the wrong issues, namely that technology in general, and more specifically information technology, has been used primarily for automating existing work rather than using it as an enabler for making non-value adding work obsolete.

Hammer’s claim was simple: Most of the work being done does not add any value for customers, and this work should be removed, not accelerated through automation. Instead, companies should reconsider their processes in order to maximize customer value, while minimizing the consumption of resources required for delivering their product or service. This idea, to unbiasedly review a company’s business processes, was rapidly adopted by a huge number of firms, which were striving for renewed competitiveness, which they had lost due to the market entrance of foreign competitors, their inability to satisfy customer needs, and their insufficient cost structure.

Even well established management thinkers, such as Peter Drucker and Tom Peters, were accepting and advocating Business Process Reengineering (BPR) as a new tool for (re)achieving success in a dynamic world. During the following years, a fast growing number of publications, books as well as journal articles, was dedicated to Business Process Reengineering (BPR), and many consulting firms embarked on this trend and developed BPR methods.… Read the rest