My son has just started secondary school and I was at his school last night to learn about their “skills” lessons. It sounds fantastic. More than one parent asked if they could come along.
In addition to learning how to learn and revise, and philosophy for children (If your clean clothes are all over the floor, does that make your floor a wardrobe?) they also have one lesson a week to spend on a “genius hour” project.
The kids choose a topic they are passionate about (I imagine my son’s will be something to do with track cycling … just a guess …), research it, follow the project through, then present to their class what they did, why they did it, and what they learned through the process.
The teacher explained how she’d got the idea from Google, which allows its employees to work on their own pet projects for 20% of their time, the thinking being that productivity increases when people work on projects they are inspired by.
After hearing about this, I wondered why law firm KMers don’t use this approach more in relation to KM projects? Instead of giving everyone the same KM targets, give everyone 1 hour of non-chargeable time a week within their targets, for a knowledge project of their choice. If one looks at KM in the widest sense, including at any project which relates to a part of the knowledge cycle (from knowledge creation, storage and usage, adaption and collaboration, to re-use or destruction), one can imagine all kinds of valuable, innovative ideas sprouting from our lawyers minds – ideas which they will be passionate about and inspired to complete.
You never know, their ideas may turn out to be equivalent to “Gmail” or “Google News” and propel your firm to greatness.
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And don’t forget my open training in London on law firm KM.