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Organizational Learning

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Text Preview Learning is the way we create new knowledge and improve ourselves. Brown and Duguid describe organizational learning is the bridge between working and innovating. Organizational Learning is a process to enable organizations to better use the knowledge of their members to make business decisions. In a conventional organization, decisions are often based on management perspective without taking into account the other members of the organization. A business using Organizational Learning recognizes the value added by including all of its members in the decision making process. A Learning Organization recognizes that a business consists of people and it takes a commitment from all in the organization to best obtain the organization’s goals. Through Organizational Learning an organization gains knowledge and develops skills to empower its members to work as a cohesive team. The following table saws some of the key differences between a Conventional Organization and a Learning Organization. Conventional Organization| Learning Organization|

Locked into management’s views of methods and goals.| Flexible and open to new ideas.| Makes decisions based on what currently best fits the organizational structure.| 1. Willing to disregard the status quo in favor of innovation. 2. Management encourages all members to continuously rethink what they do, how they do it, and how they might do it better| Adapts and/or reacts to change.| Anticipates the future and strives to create services and products before others are able to perceive the needs.|     

Organizational learning is important to organizational change and development with the changing environment, technologies and other things. As well as it helps to solve organizational problems.

Organizational learning focused originally on the practice of five core disciplines, or capacities as follow: Personal mastery
Managers must go beyond knowing what is important to achieve, they must have the ability to clarify and relay their massage to others within the organization. Mental models
Managers must be able to explain the reasoning behind decisions made, while being open to suggestions from others and being able to handle criticism without being defensive or judgmental. Shared vision

Managers who share their vision with others in the organization are more likely to get feedback on the vision. A shared vision is more likely to receive commitment from the people needed to implement the goals set by management. If people feel they have been involved in the process they are more likely to be committed to the entire process. Team learning

Managers should be able to align and develop the capacity of the team members in order to obtain the team’s desired results. Team learning builds shared vision and personal mastery because a talented team will consist of talented individuals. Systems thinking

Managers need to look at issues as they interrelate with other processes within the organization. Important perspectives of organizational learning
* The system approach (Argyris and Schon)
* Situated learning and communities of practice (Lave and Wennger) Two of the most noteworthy contributors to the field of organizational learning theory have been Chris Argrys and Donald Schon. According to Argrys & Schon is a product of organizational inquiry. This means that whenever expected outcome differs from actual outcome, an individual (or group) will engage in inquiry to understand and, if necessary, solve this inconsistency. In the process of organizational inquiry, the individual will interact with other members of the organization and learning will take place. Learning is therefore a direct product of this interaction. This interaction often goes well beyond defined organizational rules and procedures. Their approach to organizational learning theory is based on the understanding of two (often conflicting) modes of operation. Espoused theory

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