By Harsha Udayakantha Peiris
A Knowledge Management and Innovation (KMI) – Train the Trainers Program was held for the first time in Sri Lanka starting on 25 April at the Grand Monarch Hotel at Thalawathugoda, with the initiative of the Secretary to the Ministry of Public Administration and Management J. Dadallage.
The five day program is conducted by the National Productivity Secretariat (NPS) under the purview of the Ministry of Public Administration and Management and is supported by the Asian Productivity Organization (APO) in Japan.
The APO has selected Sri Lanka the best member economy to hold this as the pilot project. The program attracts 45 senior level executive officers from the public, private entities that include sectors of agriculture, education, medical, engineering, administration, industries, service and media. Internationally renowned and Singapore-based KM consultant and lecturer Praba Nair from the APO has is conducting the five-day program.
Expressing views at the initiation of the program, Dadallage stated that although it was not a new subject, managing knowledge has become imperative at present, to accurately address personal, organisational as well as national issues to boost productivity and bring its benefits to the public at each level.
“It is sad to see that we have neglected the systematic and methodical process of upgrading knowledge management where bypassing of such process has always been resultant with drawbacks in the productivity agenda. Therefore, addressing knowledge management issues accurately is also important to meet its benefits in the global context,” he stressed.
Speaking at the occasion, National Productivity Secretariat Director J.M. Thilaka Jayasundara said that the costly program that utilised a large amount of public funds should be correctly absorbed by its participants to responsibly deliver its end results as trainers for sustainable training of organisational stakeholders, role players, grass-root level participants, and learners in all sectors that also include agri, industrial and service disciplines of both public and private sectors towards prospering socio-economic development of Sri Lanka. “Fulfilling such requirements today has become a priority in the national development agenda,” she said.
National Productivity Secretariat Additional Director Suranga Gunarathne speaking at the occasion stated that it was imperative that productivity tools and techniques are correctly used in Knowledge Management (KM) training in order to accurately address issues in the public and private sector organisations.
“In Sri Lanka, we have a high demand for productivity consultancy. In such context, we aim to develop and produce a certified productivity consultancy pool through such programs like this to develop the country in a sustainable manner,” he said.
The definition of the Asian Productivity Organization (APO) on Knowledge Management (KM) states that KM is an integrated approach of creating, sharing and applying knowledge to enhance organisational productivity, profitability and growth. In consideration of such approach, this five-day Train the Trainers Program on KM is held with the key objectives to provide an understanding of the importance of KM for all organisations in the knowledge economy, highlight the benefits of KM in bringing about organisational competitiveness, foster understanding of the APO KM Framework and implementation approach and to equip participants with methods, tools and techniques for KM implementation and integration.
The overall program results are also aimed at boosting organisational excellence, livelihood development and community productivity. The program consists of lectures of theory on Knowledge Management and Innovations, field visits, sharing of APO best practices on KMI and preparation of action plans for future KM projects in Sri Lanka.
The Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Public Administration and Management M.K.B. Dissanayake and the Assistant Director (Innovation Division) of the NPS Ishani Kollure were also present at the initiation of the program.
Pix by M.A. Mahendra