Infonomics: Buzzword or Business Strategy?

This book choice post first appeared on the Major Projects Knowledge Hub on September 4, 2019.  Liz will be posting book choices to the Major Projects Knowledge Hub throughout the month of September 2019.

Greetings, all! Jonathan Norman has invited me to share some book choices with you this month. In hopes that they will spark some new ideas for your work, my first choice is:

Infonomics: How to Monetize, Manage, and Measure Information as an Asset for Competitive Advantage. Douglas B. Laney for Gartner, Inc. 2018

In his book, Laney delivers a set of new ideas, frameworks, evidence and approaches adapted from other disciplines to administer, wield and understand the value of information.

“Infonomics is the theory, study and discipline of asserting economic significance to information. It strives to apply both economic and asset management principles and practices to the valuation, handling and deployment of information assets.”

Specifically, Laney’s work articulates ways that infonomics can help organizations to better develop, sell, and market these assets in order to transform the enterprise altogether. Laney directs this content to CEO’s, CIO’s, CFO’s, CDO’s and other information and analytics leaders who intend to help their organization to become more infosavvy. Infonomics provides the business rationale for applying infosavvy practices, methods, analysis and case studies of how information and project data can be monetized to increase competitive capabilities.

I often refer people to Infonomics (when the classic KM question arises on the value of KM practices) specifically because Laney demonstrates that quantifying and qualifying information assets can be done. He includes real-world examples, frameworks and practical advice. While his business case focuses on data and information assets, I view the book as readily applicable to knowledge, expertise and deep smarts. Infonomics also examines the negative consequences for enterprises who do not cultivate, curate and operationalize these assets. The book provides clarity on what’s at stake if project knowledge or information assets are not protected, understood or shared.

I’m a big fan of this book because it hails directly from the economic and business analysis viewpoint. No matter what your role or project, everyone can experience some ah-hah! realizations applicable to business processes and project knowledge assets for infosavvy gains. While this book concentrates on applying infosavvy practices to information and data, to my way of thinking, the ideas naturally extend those economic and strategic rationales for knowledge assets. As a knowledge and digital assets manager, I frequently come back to Laney’s book for reminders of the business reasons, rewards or risks associated with NOT being an infosavvy organization.


Tell me more – conversations to grow what we know.

Jonathan Norman recently shared an outstanding resource via Major Projects Knowledge Hub Facebook group.  Diane Thielfoldt’s piece on the topic of knowledge transfer “Passing the Torch: Transferring Knowledge from Baby Boomer Employees to the Next Generation(s)  provides an amazing  overview of risks associated with loss of organizational expertise and competitive capabilities. To mitigate this risk and reverse strategic knowledge asset loss or exhaust, her article does a great job of describing the need to cultivate knowledge exchange and learning operations. I’m also inspired by her clear-eyed, practical examples of where and how to begin.

Reflection on Thielfoldt’s insights brought me back to Ana Neves of Social Now, another thought leader on knowledge sharing through enterprise social exchange. Ana’s writes and speaks about the essential elements needed first to set up successful practices.  Not just another tech tool here!  The fundamentals and frameworks to surface tacit knowledge assets begin with operations, leadership shifts and physical infrastructure.  With these management decision in play, essential enablers are in place for know-who and know-how to grow.  Neves gives us examples: create physical spaces for informal work discussions, establish time and rewards for “Work Out Loud” posts (to enterprise social networks or communities of practice for example) and in-person opportunities for community conversation and expertise exchanges.

Social Now’s 2019 conference highlighted the compelling cases for today’s networked leaders to create examples, operations and model engagement to shift organizational cultures to grow knowledge transfer and continuity. Her Social Now web page on the mandate for “new forms of ecosystem engagement” and “a shift in organizational mind-set, structure and interaction” is here:…/

Taken together, these two resources spark vision and frameworks that use face-to-face or virtual conversations to capitalize on expertise for reuse and innovative problem solving.

Do you know what is true about your strategic knowledge assets?

You’re ready to be intentional about taming the swirling information tide.  You’re ready to value and wield the competitive advantages that infosavvy practices create. You’re ready for Knowsaic.

Here are some highlights of Knowsaic’s service offerings:

  • Tame the pain points that impede information flow
  • Amplify access and discoverability of key info assets
  • Align info assets to enterprise strategies, business processes and tangible outcomes
  • Train knowledge asset stewards to apply infosavvy best practices
  • Facilitate knowledge capture and continuity ensuring operational excellence even when projects or people change
  • Work out loud in enterprise social and collaboration spaces for deeper organizational learning and adapting

Discover, value and apply the true expertise of your knowledge mosaic today with Knowsaic.