Coloring outside the lines is great thing in today’s start-up market. Innovation is the key to success, and larger firms are starting to take more and more notice of this. This is another way for larger companies to succeed in the area of knowledge management as well, according to an article by Madanmohan Rao. Rao details some important bits of information for everyone to take away from this: Knowledge management helps product companies keep up with the rapid pace of innovation in high-growth markets, develop a range of diverse products for emerging economies and deal with the high attrition of the tech industry. KM helps reuse of components and engineering processes across product lines. KM is important not just for engineers and developers but also for sales and business development functions. It helps engage with customers and business partners as well. Social media and social apps, many of which came from the start-up world, are becoming a more integral part of big businesses. Getting in on the ground floor and creating some of these apps means hiring directly from start-ups in some cases. On the flip side, as Rao notes, start-ups will soon need to formalize knowledge management. The need to exchange and maintain knowledge will become greater, and competing with larger companies is a real concern. Rao’s main point is that larger companies truly recognize the importance and influence of start-ups. Acquiring product start-ups is a new and smart way for larger companies to get new technology and to obtain greater levels of expertise. However, it must be said that not every start-up can manage the cultural change. Overall, when big organizations start to use the power of start-ups, everyone needs to be ready for things to work smoothly.