New organisational learning models

For organisations to invest in learning is not a simple task, since it is focused on meeting the individual needs of employees and not on a direct profit-making strategy.

However, fostering knowledge in organisations strengthens the construction of beliefs that impact on organisational culture. With respect to an idea that adds cognitive components (the way of thinking things) and behaviour (the way of doing things), more training allows us to go from trial-and-error models to anticipated problem-solving models.

Innovative and transformative models

Innovation and transformation go hand in hand with current learning trends. Authors Thomas Cummings and Christopher G. Worley standardised three stages in their book Organization Development & Change:

  • Stage 1: detection and diagnosis of differences between the real/desired conditions and their causes.
  • Stage 2: planning and execution of actions to solve asymmetries.
  • Stage 3: a generalisation of the knowledge generated among all organisation members in order to face future situations based on the experience gained.

Accordingly, it is important to stress that the role organisations play is to promote adaptive (based on their context) and, at the same time, generative (creative ideas that aim at the fulfilment of their vision) learning.

What do the new models depend on?

The influence of leaders is key to motivate employees; they do this by sharing their knowledge with their teams, so they feel encouraged not only to share current knowledge but also to gain new knowledge through training outside the workplace.

Boosting organisational learning provides various advantages to companies, such as:  a competitive advantage, improved productivity, commitment, satisfaction, service quality and work environment. Do you need any other reason for it to be part of your strategies?

“What you learn today is what you will be tomorrow,” Bill Gates.