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PMI President Langley Visits the Federal Knowledge Management Community Meeting

Ed Hoffman, Mark Langley, and David Oberhettinger.

Photo Credit: Department of Transportation (DOT)

On September 5, 2014, the Department of Transportation (DOT) hosted the 16th Meeting of the Federal Knowledge Community (FKMC) for a special meeting featuring the Project Management Institute’s President and CEO, Mark Langley.

Over seventy participants from over three dozen governmental entities attended in-person and online, peaking in attendance for Langley’s presentation on Leveraging Talent Management Through Knowledge Management for Project Success.

David Oberhettinger, Chief Knowledge Officer, NASA Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) presented during the morning session, describing the search and labeling features of JPLTube, an internal video-sharing website available to JPL practitioners.  JPLTube is searchable through MAVIS, Microsoft’s audio visual indexing service.  Oberhettinger explained how keywords generated by MAVIS as well as keywords uniquely inputted help researchers find the knowledge they were looking for through various search options.  This tool enables practitioners to save long viewing time as they try to find a specific topic contained in JPL videos, some of which can last several hours.

Mark Langley’s afternoon presentation outlined the top reasons for project success and for project failure: both lists did not inversely reflect each other as one might expected.  He further detailed how talent management, through elements other than training, effect project success.  Knowledge management remains central, Langley maintained, to capturing experience and transferring knowledge.  “The importance of knowledge – how it is acquired, used and shared,” stated Langley, “is key to project and program success, though only one of ten organizations report effective knowledge transfer.”  He concluded his presentation by stressing PMI’s continuing research for capturing the leading practices for developing agile, adaptive workforces and the importance of an organizational culture that values knowledge capture, talent management and project management.

Ed Hoffman, NASA Chief Knowledge Officer, rounded out the considerable agenda with a session on Leadership through Storytelling – The Power of Stories for Leadership and Success.  NASA has a long history of storytelling, and, as Dr. Hoffman spoke of it, participants learned how to make stories interesting and memorable. They then had a chance to tell stories of organizational challenges and lessons learned to each other in small groups.  Many of the stories were both humorous and enlightening.

Special thanks go to Arthur Dexter, Knowledge Resource Manager, and Randelle Ripton, Learning and Knowledge Coordinator, DOT for their expertise in supporting this important session.

The FKMC meets quarterly at participating federal agencies to share strategies for Knowledge Management (KM) and brainstorm creative solutions to make KM more effective within individual agencies, across the federal system, and beyond. To view the materials, including the presentations mentioned above, please visit the Knowledge Management Community site. To learn more or join the FKMC, please contact Susan Snyder.

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