The "Umbrella Week" as a means of sharing lessons.
The Umbrella week (aka Knowledge Handover) is a face-to-face process for sharing lessons with the rest of the organisation.
|Umbrella week image from army.mil|
You can read about a recent Umbrella week here, where Captain Scott Kuhn of the 3rd Armoured Brigade described an event last week. According to Scott,
An Umbrella Week is scheduled by brigade-level units or higher “within 6 weeks of completion of major deployments or Combat Training Center rotations in order to share lessons and best practices, and facilitating changes to Doctrine, Organization, Training, Materiel, Leadership and Education, Personnel, Facilities and Policy.
The Umbrella Week basically gives other units a chance to come and gather knowledge from a unit right after a deployment, through a structured series of facilitated discussions. The process is as follows:
- There is an initial phase of lesson-gathering from the Brigade, for example through After Action reviews
- The team from the Centre for Army Lessons Learned who organise the Umbrella week also create a collection plan to collect these lessons, and also to look at the points of interest for the rest of the organisation, and the issues where more knowledge needs to be discussed and gathered
- Various departments and agencies are invited to the Umbrella week in order to take part in the discussions, which may be in a focus-group setting or may be individual discussions. Even though lessons are prepared in advance, the discussions are question-led, rather than being presentations to an audience.
- At the end of the week each agency takes away the lessons they gained and updates training, doctrine etc, and the Analysts at the Centre for Army Lessons Learned also update their own materials.