Thursday

Knowledge workers






Knowledge workers

Alternatively termed knowledge entrepreneurs, free agents, or human capital, constitute the fastest growing sector of the workforce in the world. Knowledge workers are those who acquire, manipulate, interpret, and apply information in order to perform multidisciplinary, complex and unpredictable work.

They analyze information and apply expertise in a variety of areas to solve problems, generate ideas, or create new products and services. Examples of knowledge workers include professionals, scientists, educators, and information system designers. Knowledge work is characterized by the use of information, by unique work situations, and by creativity and autonomy. Knowledge workers make decisions rather than physical items and work with ideas rather than with objects. Their work focuses on mental rather than muscle power and is characterized by non-repetitive tasks.


Characteristics

They are possessing factual and theoritical knowledge. Knowledge workers are conversant with specific factual and theoretical information. Schoolteachers possess information regarding specialized subject matter, teaching strategies, and learning theories.

They are able to find and access the information. Knowledge workers must therefore know how to independently identify and find such material. Such employees need to know which sources provide the information they need and how to use these sources in order to locate information successfully.


They have the ability to apply information. They use information to answer questions, solve problems, complete writing assignments, and generate ideas. Use of analogical reasoning and relevance judgment enables employees to address successfully personal and customer service-related issues.


They have strong commucation skills. Knowledge work is characterized by close contact with customers, supervisors, subordinates, and team mates. Successful knowledge workers present clearly, in spoken and written word, both factual and theoretical information. These employees listen with understanding and ask for clarification when they do not understand what is being said to them.


They are highly motivated. Because new technological developments call on knowledge workers to change continuously the way they accomplish their work, these individuals must maintain a desire to apply their talents toward incorporating new information and new technologies into their work.

Employer Perspective on Knowledge Worker

The shortage of knowledge workers makes employers concerned with attracting and retaining these employees. In order to hire and retain knowledge workers, employers may offer higher salaries, attractive work environments, and continuing educational opportunities. Employers take actions designed to attract and retain knowledge workers by creating a free-agent community, respecting knowledge workers as new bosses, and providing growth opportunities.


Conclusion

In competitive working environment, employees have the freedom to choose their work methods and work in the environments in which they function best. Treating knowledge workers as the new bosses means that management operates as a facilitator rather than as a controller of work. This gives knowledge workers the autonomy they need to complete their work as they see fit. Employers make work attractive and rewarding by providing growth opportunities, such as those that are associated with ongoing training and development, special assignments, and rotation of jobs and job responsibilities. In such ways, employers attempt to address the knowledge worker shortage.
Additionally, there are still lot more information regarding knowledge workers. I would like to provide the links so that you are able to read more on this topic :)



This article tell the stories of "How to think like knowledge worker?"
http://unpan1.un.org/intradoc/groups/public/documents/unpan/unpan031277.pdf

"Are All Employees Knowledge Workers?"
http://blogs.hbr.org/bigshift/2010/04/are-all-employees-knowledge-wo.html

"Knowledge Workers and Knowledge Work"

video

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