Evolution of organization learning /theories of organization
Disciplines of organizational learning.
Critical factors for organizational learning.
Applications of organizational learning to an organization.
Barriers to Organization learning.
Change management principles.
Organizational Learning and Change Management.
Applications of Organizational Learning to Change
What is learning?
There are four different orientations to
The cognitive orientation.
The humanist orientation.
The social/situational orientation.
What is an organization?
It is a formal set of structure or people who come
together in order to achieve a common set goal for all. It
can be a business premise, academic institution, or a big
Bushe and Shani (1991), Senge (1990) and Garvin (1993)
Davenport, Jarvenpaa, Beers (1996) defined
organisational learning as the capacity to create, acquire,
incorporate and transfer knowledge through a synergy
process where the individual learning is converted into
collective learning through the transformation of the
knowledge into organisational routines and new forms of
Senge (1990) Dixon (1997) Defined organisational learning
as a synergy effect in the learning: "learning to learn
together" from the individual learning to the collective
Change management is a systematic approach to
dealing with change, both from the perspective of
an organization and on the individual level.
What is a Learning Organization?
Senge (1990) defines the Learning Organization as "a
group of people continually enhancing their capacity
to create what they want to create.“
Its an organization with an ingrained philosophy for
anticipating, reacting and responding to change,
complexity and uncertainty.”
As Senge (1990) remarks: "The rate at which
organizations learn may become the only sustainable
source of competitive advantage."
Two developments have been highly significant in
the growth of the field.
First it has attracted the attention of scholars from
disparate disciplines that had hitherto shown little
interest in learning processes. A consequence of this
is that the field has become conceptually
fragmented, and representatives of different
disciplines now vie over who has the correct model
of organizational learning.
The second development is that many consultants
and companies have caught onto the commercial
significance of organizational learning, in which
much of the effort of these theorists has been
devoted to identifying templates, or ideal forms,
which real organizations could attempt to emulate.
Thus organizational learning is dividing into two
basic areas as technical or a social process.
Argyris & Schön (1978) distinguished between
single-loop and double-loop learning, related to
Gregory Bateson's concepts of first and second order
In single-loop learning, individuals, groups, or
organizations modify their actions according to the
difference between expected and obtained
In double-loop learning, the entities (individuals,
groups or organization) question the values,
assumptions and policies that led to the actions in
the first place; if they are able to view and modify
those, then second-order or double-loop learning has
taken place. Double loop learning is the learning
about single-loop learning.
Bontis, Crossan & Hulland (2002) empirically
tested a model of organizational learning
that encompassed both stocks and flows of
knowledge across three levels of analysis:
individual, team and organization. Results
showed a negative and statistically
significant relationship between the
misalignment of stocks and flows and
Bontis & Serenko (2009a), and Bontis &
Serenko (2009b) proposed and validated a
causal model explicating organizational
learning processes to identify antecedents
and consequences of effective human capital
management practices in both for-profit and
The results demonstrate that managerial
leadership is a key antecedent
Disciplines are areas of personal
improvement these five disciplines were
originally outlined in 1990 in The Fifth
Discipline and are core to many
organizational learning efforts.
Garvin (1993) cites three critical factors that
are essential for organizational learning in
practice: meaning, management, and
measurement, each further defined as
Organizational learning focuses on recording
knowledge gained through experience (in
the short term), and subsequently making
that knowledge available to others when it
is relevant to their work (in the long term)
Create corporate/artifact memories where
knowledge and improvisations can be
captured and made part of the organizations
collective knowledge base.
Regard breakdowns as opportunities (IBM:
communicate openly, reward people for
Change is the only constant.
- Heraclitus, Greek philosopher
What was true more than two thousand years
ago is just as true today. We live in a world
where "business as usual" IS change. New
initiatives, project-based working, technology
improvements, staying ahead of the competition
- these things come together to drive ongoing
changes to the way that we work.
Whether you're considering a small change to
one or two processes, or a system wide change
to an organization, it's common to feel uneasy
and intimidated by the scale of the challenge.
Change management is a systematic
approach to dealing with change, both from
the perspective of an organization and on
the individual level .
For an organization, change management
means defining and implementing procedures
and/or technologies to deal with the changes
in the business environment from a current
state to a desired future state.
At all times involve and agree support from
people within system, processes, culture,
Understand where you/ the organization are at
Understand where you want to be, when, why
and what the measures will be for having got
Plan development towards an appropriate
achievable measurable stage.
Communicate, involve, enable and facilitate
involvement from people, as early and openly
and fully as is possible.
Change is the result of dissatisfaction with
the present strategies
It is essential to develop a vision for a better
It is necessary to develop strategies to
There will be resistance to the proposals at
The organization needs to understand and clarify
mutual expectations about the level of detail and
cost the change process requires.
The organizational context, and other strategic
drivers, personalities and politics are often more
significant influences than can be tackled by
Individuals in the organization needs training in
order to develop their capability thus their mental
status in the subjective emotional needs to be
developed into objectivity before beginning to
help them handle change.
The responsibility of managing change is always
bestowed on the management and executives of
organizations thus they must manage the change
in a way that employees can cope with it thus
would need training about the change being
In change management an organization can
conduct workshops which are useful to develop
collective understanding, approaches, policies,
methods, systems, and ideas.
Management training, empathy and facilitative
capability are priority areas in change
Rapid Change: Change in the workplace is occurring rapidly. Companies
are being forced to quickly adapt work processes. In a Learning
Organization, change is seen as an opportunity to learn through problem
Eroding Knowledge Bases: With attrition of employees, reductions-inforce, and expected retirements are eroding the organizational
knowledge bases. A Learning Organization fosters information exchange
and captures expertise from all levels of personnel. and, technology is
leverage to support information exchange.
Evolving Roles of Supervisors: Supervisors are assuming increasing
responsibility for traditional human resource functions. In a Learning
Organization, managers serve as teachers and each individual is
empowered to be responsible for his or her own learning.
Limited Training Resources: Many company training budgets are
shrinking while staff members have less time to attend formal training
sessions. A Learning Organization can make use of alternative strategies
that integrate learning into the workplace. These alternative methods
cost less and are effective.
"If you’re walking down the right path and
you’re willing to keep walking, eventually
you’ll make progress.“Barrack Obama
"Change will not come if we wait for some
other person or some other time. We are the
ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the
change that we seek."
In the same way an Organization has to keep
walking down the path of Organization learning to
achieve the change they desire efficiently and
effectively to gain a competitive edge and maintain