knowledge management

An organization manages information to efficiently communicate & collaborate. To efficiently work together people need to know:

  • What & how to create information?
  • Where to organize & find information?

What & how to create

  • Use simple text files to create lists and notes 1
  • Use templates to standardize the information the organization creates:
    • describe information in [[ article_template ]]
      • knowledge (whatis) explains a concept. e. g. “Why … / Which/what … is startup security / … is the best tool.” Use the wikipedia structure from their overview (summary - then detailed sections) and the aws 6 pager format.
        • start with a summary / outcome / goal
        • cronologically or logically provide the full description of the topic (consider narrative [[ writing ]])
      • how-to guides you to do something if you want to instuct (a process) use howto e.g. “How to … do something”. “How to … do something”. Use the divo structure for howto articles.
    • inform/sell about something in anouncement
      • check the changelog & how to write release notes and product anouncements - in the gitlab documentation
      • check the 2 page press release method from amazon
    • overview with [[ landingpage_template ]]
    • document decisions ( [[ documentation ]]) in
      • [[ rfc_template ]] / [[ adr_template ]]
      • area specific templates e.g. product security concept, product architecture, product customer onboarding
    • document meetings: [[ meeting_tempate ]]
    • describe journal: [[ day_template ]], [[ weekly_template ]]
    • document kanban: [[ kanban-board-template ]]
    • databases for standalone tools
  • classify the data
    • if everybody in the world should read it’s public
    • if only you should read it’s internal
  • Add note maturity
    • season: summer : the note is near-complete (more than 80% done)
    • season: spring : the note is in progress and has already good content (at least an outline of the overall content)
    • season: winter : the note has just started, a summary is present however.
    • season: automn : the note needs refactoring or some rewriting. It won’t appear in the front-page feed.

Where to organize

Organize all notes & files in folders by how actionable they are:2

  • 01_PROJECTS
    • Create for each new project a folder and a Kanban board ( [[ kanban-board-template ]])
    • Order the project folders by importance.
    • Create someday folder and save non actionable projects there.
    • Add the related articles, decisions, meetings to the kanban board as a todo & create it in the folder.
  • 02_AREAS
    • Create a folder for each area. The gitlab handbook includes product roadmap/epics, sales (crm), HR, and engineering(documentation).
    • Move valuable files releated to an area here (e.g. a new human resource policy).
  • 03_ARTICLES
    • Create a public digital garden. The digital garden starts with a landing page. The landing page links to the different notes. Navigate the notes with a graph view.
    • Articles include only public information. Share articles with others to help and get feedback. (e.g. blog posts, product documentation …)
  • 04_ARCHIVE
    • Move old assets from the other areas here.

[[ my technology stack ]] uses Google Drive & ObsidianMD. A fullstack alternative is Notion.

Reference

Background

Requirement

  • The tooling is as simple as possible (little different parts, an everybody in the company should be able to use it).
  • The consistent (structure, tags …).
  • As little tools as possible.

Alternatives

Use other technologies

Name price features
Confluence 5-10 + 3 (+ jira costs) euro per person/month 🔴 no bi-directional linking 🔴 no easy crm feature
Notion 8-20 euro per person/month 🔴 no markdown tables 🟢 but easy crm feature 🔴 no self hosted option
Gitlab 21-99 euro per person/month 🔴 no easy crm feature 🔴 high cost (each user requires a gitlab account that is very expensive) 🟢 self hosted option
Google Suite   🔴 you can’t create all tools (CRM, tech stack)

Using specialized software e.g. CRMs

Spcialized tools like CRMs have more feature then utelizing Notion. A lot of those features don’t fit our processes. It is easier to implement a minimal simple process in notion that fits our workflow. When the tool is 10x better (measure by impact to our most important business KPI - revenue per month) we accept the increased complexity and introduce the sepcialized tool.

Don’t use tags

Tags are complex and hard to recall.

  1. Obsidian allows me to link notes and view them side-by-side. The side-by-side view is important when I use list to identify the tasks of the day. 

  2. based on [[ PARA Notes ]] 

Notes mentioning this note


Here are all the notes in this garden, along with their links, visualized as a graph.