Organizational Learning, Performance, and Change: An Introduction to Strategic Human Resource Development

By Jerry W. Gilley; Ann Maycunich | Go to book overview
Learning is increased when we are asked questions (or ask ourselves questions).
Learning intensifies when we reflect on what we did in the experience.
Greater learning occurs when we are given time and space to deal with problems and reflect on our decisions, when a sense of urgency exists, when we can see results, when we are allowed to take risks, and when we are encouraged and supported in our deliberations.
We can learn critically when we are able to question the assumptions on which our actions are based.
We learn when we receive accurate feedback from others and from the results of our problem-solving actions.
When we do not rely solely on experts, we become empowered to seek our own solutions.
Nonhierarchical groups from across organizational departments and functions are often better able to gain new perspectives and therefore augment learning.
Action learning is most effective when learners are examining the organizational system as a whole.
Group responsibility for the task empowers the members and enhances learning.
We are most challenged when we work on unfamiliar problems in unfamiliar settings, where we can unfreeze some of our previous ways of doing things and develop new ways of thinking.
By working cooperatively with others on real issues, the group can move to a higher level of learning relative to application, synthesis, and evaluation.
People learn when they do something, and they learn more as they feel more responsible for their task.

Action learning is built upon the entire learning cycle: learning and creating knowledge through concrete experience, observing and identifying the problem, reflecting on this experience, experimenting, analyzing and forming generalizations from experiments, planning solutions, testing the implications of the generalizations in new experiences, and beginning the process again ( Marquardt 1999, 35-36).


Conclusion

Organizational learning has become a critical professional practice domain within HRD. However, it is often confused with the learning organization. The following explanation provided by Marquardt ( 1996, 19) furnishes some critical insight:

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