Time For Tiedosta: To Know About Knowledge

In the late 1999 and into early 2000 I was the CTO for a startup.

The product was ahead of its time (“can you put it in an email?” it the comment from a VC that still haunts me to this day — as if) and it was a platform play.  Inconsequential to this post.

The reason I bring this up is because when we set out to settle the name of the company one of my co-founders (a truly amazing person by the name of Mike Harris – with whom I lost contact unfortunately) suggested we use the word Tiedosta.

Turns out he had spent some time in Finland and he learned that the word Tiedosta in Finnish means “about knowledge”.

It is not knowledge, or to know – it is about knowledge (which, was a very important part of our product).

It is about the knowledge that surrounds the actual knowledge, about the processes and methods by which we obtain that knowledge, and grow it, and how the knowledge we use is merely a piece of a larger puzzle.

Tiedosta – about knowledge.

If you follow my writings and my research you know that knowledge is one of the things that intrigues me the most.  I have spent hours and hours reading and researching it, putting together new thinking and models about it, documenting what others are doing, and writing about it when I have time.

Which, coincidentally, is usually in the second half of the year… namely, now.

I am launching the first of a few research projects I am conducting this year on knowledge.  You know my sponsored research model where I do the research I would normally conduct with clients sponsoring parts of it.  I get to remain impartial, and they get much needed data and analysis – and I pay the bills.  Win, win, win.

In this case, I am working with IntelliResponse to find out as much as we can about knowledge management and web self-service for customer service.

We just published a survey on those topics and we would love your help.  I have embedded the survey down here

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey , the world’s leading questionnaire tool.


or you can click this link and take the survey in a full tab if you prefer.

Rather lengthy (32 questions total, divided in two topics, and need to qualify to respond to each topic) but clocks in at 20-25 minutes for most people who tested it.

Help us, please, find out more about knowledge management and web self-service for customer service.  As usual, for your participation you will get an exclusive report to be published at the end of September with all the answers and the analysis of the survey.

We are closing this survey at the end of the month – we want to accommodate vacationers, or we may extend it if the summer plays with our response rate… but we prefer to get more answers early.

You can stop and come back anytime, you can answer one or two questions a day, or all at once – your choice.  Either way, we will be very grateful and you get to find out what others are doing with knowledge management and web self- service for customer service.

Take the survey, please.

Questions? email me.

Comments? enter them below.

THANK YOU, truly.

What’s the Future of Feedback? Stay Tuned…

Back in 2001 – while an incredible talented, young, and successful Gartner analyst – I wrote a research note introducing  the concept of Customer Feedback Systems.

In it I wrote about how feedback was poorly done as stand-alone surveys or outsourced entirely to market research firms (that in turn took too long to deliver insights) and that it never really looked at the bigger issue: how to coordinate and integrate the existing data with the data collected via surveys.

Through a couple of naming conventions and work done with Perseus and Jeffrey Henning we finally settled on EFM (Enterprise Feedback Management) as the name for the solution.  The birth of the EFM market was simple and unassuming.

Fast forward five years, and 2006 saw me fielding 10-12 inquiries about EFM a day, and the market grow from non-existing to nearly $100 million in software sales and related fees.  Fast forward another five years, and the market had been changed from EFM to VoC and was nearing $250-300 million in software sales and related fees – and began to slow-down in adoption.  I even had to come to the defense of the market in a blog post.

While the growth had not stalled, it was certainly beginning to slow down considerably and adoption of VoC was not as interesting as it had been for EFM.  What was the change? Why did organizations began to slow down adoption? What did the future hold for EFM  and VoC?

I have been researching the market from the beginning and I can honestly say that the future is bright as it ever was, it not brighter, and that the major shift in vendor behavior the past four years is responsible for it.

I am writing a detailed report on the new realities of Feedback, EFM, and VoC now that we saw a major change in data collection, analysis, and integration into everyday processes.  I have met and talked to the relevant vendors and consultants, interviewed many practitioners, and discussed the perspectives with analysts and pundits – and am ready to publish my findings.

Although this won’t be for another four-to-six weeks, I participated in a panel earlier this year at Allegiance’s VoCFusion conference where I shared the major findings so far – and they are very interesting.

Watch this video summary of that conference, whet your appetite for the future of Feedback, and let me know if you have something you want to contribute or discuss on this topic.  Happy to engage and extend my knowledge.

Anything you want to add? Comment box is below…