This study examines managers‟ perceptions of Knowledge Management (KM) prior to implementation of KM-systems in a global insurance company and investigates whether Hierarchical structures are conducive to KM. Mixed methods are used, combining large scale surveying and case study using content analysis to organize the data into themes that provide the basis for arguments. Evidence suggests that managers strongly align their perception of KM with communication. Despite a multi-layered, hierarchical structure and strong middle management presence, organizational structure was not viewed as an issue. These factors are usually barriers to communication and organizational flexibility, yet managers believe that they may not inhibit KM becoming fully embedded. This evidence is contradicted by the results of a global KM study where silos, stovepipe and hierarchical structures were commonly cited as barriers. This contributes to the understanding of managerial mis-conceptions of knowledge as opposed to communication, and how organizations effectively share knowledge.
Leslie, Andrew and Mohamed, Souad, "Hierarchical Structures: Conducive or Barrier to Knowledge Management?" (2010). AMCIS 2010 Proceedings. 69.