PKM Version 3.0: The Process

Personal Knowledge Mastery is one of the processes (and practices) I use to evolve myself. It is my personal key to change.

Over the years I have revised my practice several times (v1.0 & v2.0) as I started learning more. This is my third attempt and by far the simplest.

This will also be the first of several posts walking through the various pieces and philosophies around my practice in attempt to help me get clear and hopefully help other folks who are looking for inspiration in their own practices.


I currently seek information via Cronycle, ad hoc searching, and communities/networks I am involved in (more info on the tools I use for my PKM process in the near future).

When I review/scan any content I ask myself a few questions:

  1. Could it be useful in achieving one of my goals or helpful to someone I know? If not, I delete it or ignore it.
  2. If it is, do I have time to do something with it now or do I need to save it for later?
    • If I can process it now, I try to make sense of the information. If I don’t have time but I think I want to do something with it, I save for later on a Cronycle board adding a note about what intrigued me so I know why I saved it.

Sense Making

When I have the time to do something with the content there are a few choices I make about what I want to do:

  1. Is it something I want to curate into a “newsletter” to publish to my blog or internal work network?
    • If yes, I add my own insights / thoughts on why I am sharing and post to one of my newsletter boards in Cronycle that I will publish when the timing is right.  
  2. Is it something I need to deep dive into because I am trying to acquire new knowledge and add value to a certain topic?
    • If yes, then I start deep diving, take notes, synthesize the content with what I currently know by thinking through how it adds to or changes my current thinking and figuring out how I am going to use this knowledge in whatever I am creating at the moment.* 
  3. Is it something that I want to “engage” with? 
    • If yes, this means finding a way to add value to what someone else is saying/sharing.

Sometimes the answer is any number of combinations above.

*this was a trick I learned from Jane Hart

Purpose Driven Sharing

I like to double check with myself before I publish or engage with any content to make sure its in alignment with my goals.  If it’s not to thank someone, support them, or share something that I think will help further someone’s thinking, I just don’t do it.

I also tend to think that I can share content actively and inactively.   When I publish content on my blog, medium, or a curation tool, I view this as inactive sharing. This is because people have to search or subscribe to find.  I am not actively “promoting” or pointing people to the content I created/synthesized.

Whereas I view posting on platforms like Twitter or LinkedIn as active sharing. I try to be more even more purposeful when I share here. For me, this means that it benefits someone other than myself and can be used to build/foster relationships. 

Harold Jarche’s PKM Workshop and John Stepper’s WOL circles really drove this point home for me.

Would love to know what your practice looks like. Hit me up on twitter or comment below.

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