We explain what know-how or “know how” is and why it is important. In addition, we tell you what business know-how is.
Know-how is a type of knowledge that facilitates obtaining the expected results.
What is know-how?
Know-how is an Anglicism (a loan from English in the Spanish language) equivalent to “know how” or “know how”, and which in its original language is used to refer to practical or tacit knowledge, that is, to knowledge pragmatic, of use, far from theory and ideals, which are useful for obtaining the expected ends.
This term is used in many contexts related to applied knowledge or experience itself: a person may not be formally educated and licensed for a trade, but have the know-how of the subject, that is, lack formal and theoretical understanding, but know how to get tangible results. For example, someone may not know how computers and software work, but be able to handle them and perform complex tasks from pure experience.
In that same sense, the term is applied to the industrial and corporate world. Business know-how has to do with the organization’s experience and track record, be it in its productive, organizational, administrative, financial, or control tasks. It is, therefore, a procedural knowledge, not abstract, but applied to obtaining results.
As with other Anglicisms and foreign words, it is correct that the term know-how be written in italics (and with its original hyphen), although the Royal Spanish Academy and other regulatory bodies of the Spanish language suggest its replacement by ” know how to do”, and insist that it is an unnecessary Anglicism, the use of which appeals to the prestige of the Anglo-Saxon language in the business world, or simply to fashion.
See also: Resources of a company
In the business world, know-how is associated with a successful trajectory, in which the organization itself (and not only its members) accumulates “know-how”, that is, its own and effective way of doing things, which It is not necessarily accompanied by academic certifications of any kind.
Know-how is typical of the world of franchises, since in this business model what is sold is precisely procedural knowledge, how to do things, according to the experience of a company established in the area, with many years of success in the business.
For example, when you buy a McDonald’s franchise, you are actually buying the know-how of this hamburger chain, which has been among the first places in the fast food industry in the world for several decades. The company tells us where, how and in what way to install the restaurant, how to use the colors, the logo, etc., in order to ensure the success of a serial business model.
Characteristics of business know-how
Business know-how offers a solid starting point for a project.
Broadly speaking, business know-how translates into:
- (Re)position the business. Finding viable business ideas or knowing how to redirect a business towards a more advantageous area, in order to satisfy a latent demand from the clientele. The latter often must be discovered.
- Detect threats. Anticipate external change to the organization and anticipate enough to adapt the corporate structure to a new environment with minimal damage and risk.
- Know how to make decisions. Knowing how to take risks when it’s convenient and play conservatively when it’s convenient, that is, having more than one response to complex scenarios that may arise.
- Create teams and set goals. Structuring in the most agile and convenient way possible a team with goals set in advance, which translates into a solid starting point for the project.
- Set priorities correctly. Businesses don’t always make a profit, and part of the know-how is knowing how to deal with risks, losses, and conflict situations.
Importance of business know-how
Business know-how brings great benefits to a company in the face of its environment or competition due to customer favouritism. In general, people trust companies with a long track record in their respective areas more, for the same reason that they trust professionals with long track records: academic and theoretical knowledge is undoubtedly essential in life, but it is little thing without the procedural, pragmatic and tacit knowledge that experience grants.
That is why companies with know-how show off their respective trajectories and offer themselves as experts in their area, or as prestigious and responsible institutions, since they have been doing the same for years.
Continue with: Knowledge is power