Matti Vesala: “Make noise. Tell stories. Be social.”

Matti Vesala is a Business Executive with Sofigate . He has a track reacord of over 12 years in leading sales and delivery of global IT services. Over the years he has witnessed the evolution of the core IT and the revolution of digitalization, especially in the telecommunications and media industries. He is passionate to find out how future digitalization and “robotisation” will be managed and how we will transform our leadership to maximize the benefits of digital and social businesses. In a short interview we posed a few questions about the importance of diversity and about knowledge management. Here are some insights he shared with us to share with you. Matti is one of our distinguished speakers at the conference.

What is the importance of diversity in digitalization? If all the industries are moving towards digitalization then what is the role of diversity in digitalization; is it digital diversity?

Diversity is definitely in the core of digitalization. The innovation for emerging new business models requires diversity in thinking, diversity in knowledge and diversity in experience. On the other hand, the number of different options in the digital world are endless. Therefore, diversity is the absolute key to be able to differentiate from the rest of the market.

During these turbulent times, as many companies are laying off people, how are companies coping with managing knowledge since knowledge is also leaving with these employees? In your opinion, what is the best way to manage this?

Diversity can be maintained only when people move and change their jobs. Lay-offs, of course, are rarely a positive thing. However, during these times we should not look knowledge management purely from the company perspective but rather from the viewpoint of society and market. At the end it might be a good thing that knowledge is not that tightly locked in companies but is more freely accessible in the market, for new businesses to develop.

In companies we should be aware of people and knowledge flow. Rather than trying to stop it we should provide means for people to give their best for the company and its knowledge base during the time they work in the company. The focus of knowledge management should be the knowledge itself and how to let people build on that, constantly developing and refining the knowledge base in their daily work.

To make that easy, at least the following should be considered:

  • Always simplify knowledge. Simplicity is efficiency.
  • De-mystify knowledge. Show how it can be learned by everyone.
  • Build a brand for the knowledge. Knowledge should invite people to make use of it and refine it.
  • Do not (always) reinvent the wheel. Build on the known best practices.
  • Put knowledge in the center of everyday life. All work builds on the knowledge, every second.

As a Consultant/leader how would you recommend employers/managers to motivate employees to learn and adapt to change? For example the company can adopt a new technology but if there is no motivation to learn and share there is absolutely no use of the new technology.

I do not believe that one can “motivate” others to adapt to changes or learn new technologies. What we can do in our companies is to facilitate an environment where people can drive change and create ideas as well as develop knowledge. The information, technology, processes or methods that do not invite people to use them are literally useless. Then it is not a question to “motivate” (=force) people to take them into use. It is a question of getting rid of useless things and letting people to find a more useful alternative.

Ultimately, today, I would not speak about knowledge management. I would speak only about knowledge sharing.

Make noise. Tell stories. Be social.

That is how knowledge is shared.