Effect of Learning Organization Perception to the Organizational Commitment: A Comparison between Private and Public University

Article excerpt

Abstract

This research aims to examine the impact of faculty members' learning organization perceptions to the organizational commitment through quantitative method. The study group consists of 172 faculty members working in two universities, which are private (Zirve University) and public (Harran University) ones. The research results show that faculty members working in private university have a higher level of learning organization perceptions than faculty members in public university and feel a higher level of commitment to universities which they work. Results also indicate that private university's faculty members' perceptions of learning organization dimensions with perceptions of levels of organizational commitment (except for commitment based on compliance), in all dimensions, were more positive than those working in public university. Also, the dimension of reinforced employees from learning organization dimensions negatively predicts organizational commitment based on compliance and the dimensions of team learning and shared systems positively predict the organizational commitment based on identification. Especially, the dimension of shared systems constitutes a more powerful effect on the commitment on the level of identification. Finally it was found that none of the learning organization dimensions made a significant impact on organizational commitment based on internalization.

Key Words

Learning Organization, Organizational Commitment, Private University, Public University, Faculty Members.

Learning Organizations

Organizations, not just people, must also adapt to rapidly changing circumstances. One of the management concepts developed to increase competitiveness and survival of organizations is the concept of learning organization. This concept is based on organizations to acquire new knowledge, to share the information produced and to use in solving the problems transforming the organization's information. In this sense, learning is an existential act which presents continuity for organizations. According to Richardson (1995), achieving effective learning by creating new markets, products, services, and processes to respond to changing environments has become the most strategic issue of recent years. So, how organizational learning will develop productivity and performance in rapidly changing and highly interactive business environment seems to preserve the distinction of being a strategic issue not only today but also in the future.

The tendency to see learning as a lifestyle for organizations, especially, started after Senge's works in the 1990s. Establishing learning organizations include training people looking with system thinking to events, developing your own personal expertise, thinking with mental models, having a shared vision and also learning through team and collaboration (Senge, 1993). On the other hand, researchers mention the existence of seven compulsory action turning organizations into learning organizations. These are creating opportunities for continuous learning, developing research and dialogue, encouraging collaboration and team work, establishing systems which provide information and share learning, integrating people around a common vision, making the organization associated with its environment, and finally establishing supportive leadership in both individual and team and organizational level (Cullen, 1999).

Scan of the learning organization idea emphasizes the definitions of different learning organizations. According to Hitt (1995), Giriego, Geroy, and Wright (2000) learning organization is an organization looking for transformation and excellence through interrupted and continuous organizational renewal and gradually mastering in this subject. To Gold (1997), Dunphy, Turner, and Crawford (1997), learning organization is to re-shape skills and the use and share in both individual and organizational level. Learning begins with being a member of the organization. …