Med kunskap i fokus: En kvalitativ studie av knowledge management på mellanstora svenska managementkonsultföretag
Sammanfattning: Background: Knowledge management is a concept that is considered of increasing importance in the developing knowledge society. Previous research in the area has to a large extent been based on large multinational companies. Purpose: The thesis aims to clarify how middle-sized Swedish management consultancy companies work with knowledge management. The thesis intends to use existing theories about knowledge management to explain the effect of size and area of operation on management consultancy companies’ knowledge management. Methodology: A qualitative method has been used, based on anonymous interviews and field studies. Teoretical framwork: Three models of knowledge management illustrate past findings; the SECI-model (Nonaka & Takeuchi 1995), the knowledge element model (Werr & Stjernberg 2004), and the competitive strategy model (Hansen, Nohira & Tierney 1999). Empirical foundation: The data has resulted in three company-specific case studies. Analysis: The analysis maps out how the companies manage their knowledge and finds that tacit knowledge generally is more manifested than explicit knowledge in the medium-sized companies. The studied companies vary in how they diffuse knowledge and how they use the knowledge elements. The result is that they manage their knowledge in a way that does not fully concur with what can be assumed from the theories. Conclusion: The thesis concludes that medium-sized Swedish management concultancy companies use tacit, specified, and personalized knowledge management. Size plays an important role in shaping companies’ work with knowledge management, while area of operation cannot be defined as a determinant. Medium-sized Swedish management consultancy companies emphasize personal interaction in knowledge management. Informal interplay among the consultants is more highlighted than the formalization of knowledge management.
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