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Building Learning

 Unit-1 Emerging Business
 Unit-2 Why Organization Need to
 Unit 3- Organization Learning- A
capabilities Based View

Organizational Learning
Learning Organizations

Learning Organizations

Learning Organization

 LO is the generic term given to

strategies and initiatives for improving
organizational effectiveness through
emphasis on developing the
capabilities , capacities and qualities
of the employees at all the levels.
 Corporate commitment for doing
things in there preferred ways.

 LO adopts strategic approaches to
long term organizational security,
continuity, viability, effectiveness-and
therefore profitability- that integrates-
 What is done and why- business and
organizational policy, direction,
purpose and priorities with,
 How it is done- the specific attention
to the staff who have to implement it,
and whose efforts depends continuing
success or failure.

 A "Learning Organization" is one in which
people at all levels, individually and
collectively, are continually increasing their
capacity to produce results they really care
 An organization that learns and encourages
learning among its people. It promotes
exchange of information between
employees hence creating a more
knowledgeable workforce. This produces a
very flexible organization where people will
accept and adapt to new ideas and
changes through a shared vision.

 It was Peter Senge’s 1990
book The Fifth Discipline that
popularized the concept of
the ‘learning organization'.
Since its publication, more
than a million copies have
been sold and in 1997,
Harvard Business Review
identified it as one of the
seminal management books
of the past 75 years.
Learning Organisation
 Peter Senge has defined Learning
Organization in the following way,
 "Organisations where:

 people continually expand their capacity to create the

results they truly desire,
 new and expansive patterns of thinking are nurtured,
 collective aspiration is set free, and
 people are continually learning to learn together"

- Peter Senge

Need for Learning Organization

Is your company is suffering with following problems?

 Do your employees seem unmotivated or uninterested in
their work?
 Does your workforce lack the skill and knowledge to adjust
to new jobs?
 Do you seem to be the only one to come up with all the
 And does your workforce simply follow orders?
 Do your teams argue constantly and lack real
 Or lack communication between each other? And when
the "guru" is off do things get put on hold?
 Are you always the last to hear about problems?
 Or worst still the first to hear about customer complaints?
 And do the same problems occur over and over?

 In current situations of rapid change only those
organizations that are flexible, adaptive and productive
will excel. For this to happen, organizations need to
‘discover how to tap people’s commitment and capacity
to learn at all levels’
 While all people have the capacity to learn, the structures
in which they have to function are often not conducive to
reflection and engagement. Furthermore, people may
lack the tools and guiding ideas to make sense of the
situations they face. Organizations that are continually
expanding their capacity to create their future require a
fundamental shift of mind among their members.
 According to Peter Senge, real learning gets to the heart
of what it is to be human. We become able to re-create
ourselves. This applies to both individuals and
organizations. For a ‘learning organization it is not
enough to survive. ‘”Survival learning” or what is more
often termed “adaptive learning” is important – indeed it
is necessary. But for a learning organization, “adaptive
learning” must be joined by “generative learning”,
learning that enhances our capacity to create’
How to create a LO
The Building Blocks- To build a solid
foundation for creating a LO following
parameters are needed :
 Awareness- learning must take place at all
the levels
 Environment-organic structure, linear
organization with open communication
 Leadership-Leader should foster system
 Empowerment-Decision making power +
 Learning- Learning Labs, Simulation games

 According to Peter Senge the
dimension that distinguishes learning
from more traditional organizations is
the mastery of certain basic
disciplines or ‘component


 Systems thinking-People in an organization are part of a system.
Systems thinking is a discipline which integrates the other disciplines
in a business. It allows the 'whole' (organization) to be greater than the
'parts (people, departments, teams, equipment and so on).
 Personal mastery.-This discipline allows people to clarify and focus
their personal visions, focus energy, develop patience and see the world
as it really is. Employees who possess a high level of personal mastery
can consistently generate results which are important to them through
their commitment to lifelong learning.
 Mental models- These are internalized frameworks which support our
views of the world, beliefs in why and how events happen, and our
understanding of how things, people and events are related. Senge
advocates bringing these to the surface, discussing them with others in
a 'learningful' way and unlearning ways of thinking which are not
 Building shared vision-Developing 'shared pictures of the future'
together so that people are genuinely committed and engaged rather
than compliant.
 Team learning- Senge sees teams as a vital element of a learning
14 As there is a great significance in the ability of teams to
The Focus of Learning Organization Five

Personal Mental
Mastery The Models

Shared Team
Vision Learning

Peter Senge
A Learning Organization:
Key Disciplines
 SYSTEMS THINKING: Integrating all the functions in an
organization into a cohesive structure.

 PERSONAL MASTERY: Personal and professional

development that is in sync with the organization’s goals.

 MENTAL MODELS: Internalized frameworks and

generalizations of how an organization works and
responds to its environment.

 SHARED VISION: Developing commitment using “shared

pictures of the future”; Everyone working for a common,
agreed upon future.

 TEAM LEARNING: People working as teams and therefore

learning as teams.
The Learning Organization Goal

Make Learning Part of the

Every Day Office Environment

The Learning Organization

 Encourages Continuous Learning

 Promotes Access to Learning
 Maximizes Information Sharing
 Increases Flexible Access to Training
 Works Efficiently Using Interactive
 Sees the Big Picture
 Shares a Common Vision

Why is it Important?
 “The organizations that will truly excel in the future will be the
organizations that discover how to tap people’s commitment and
capacity to learn at all levels in an organization.”
– Peter Senge
 “The rate at which organizations learn may become the only
sustainable source of competitive advantage.”
– Peter Drucker
 “The need for learning organizations is due to the world
becoming more complex, dynamic and globally competitive.”
– Gary Ahlquist

What is a Learning
Organization? - Debate
 Many pundits – among the most
respected business thinkers:
 Peter Drucker – “The Information Age”
 Peter Senge – “The Fifth Discipline”

 No clear consensus on the definition

 Learning Organization is an ideal that
could exist in may forms

Peter Drucker – “The
Information Age”
 Competitive advantage is created through “information-
based organizations”
 Four Critical Areas:
 Develop rewards, recognition and career
opportunities that stimulate information sharing
 Create a unified vision of how the organization will
share information
 Create the management structure that enables cross-
boundary information sharing
 Ensure the continuous supply and training of staff and
volunteers that can use the information

Peter Senge – “The Fifth
 “Learning organizations are where people continually
expand their capacity to learn”
 “Five disciplines are key to achieving an effective
learning organization”
 Personal Mastery – enhancing ability to be objective
 Mental Models – continually scrutinizing our
assumptions and picture of the world
 Shared Vision – creating a new picture for the future
 Team Learning – creating the capacity to “think
 Systems Thinking – knowledge and tools that allow
people to see inter-relationships

Shared Characteristics
(across many differing
 Provide continuous learning opportunities for all
employees and volunteers
 Use learning as a way to reach the organization’s goals
 Link individual performance with organizational
 Make it safe for people to share information and take
 Embrace differences as tension that generates creativity
 Continuously understand and interact with targeted

System Thinking
 This is the ability to see the bigger picture, to look at the
interrelationships of a system as opposed to simple cause-
effect chains; allowing continuous processes to be studied
rather than single snapshots.
 The essential properties of a system are not determined by
the sum of its parts but by the process of interactions
between those parts.
 Systems thinking is fundamental to any learning organization;
it is the discipline used to implement the disciplines.
 Without systems thinking each of the disciplines would be
isolated and therefore not achieve their objective. The fifth
discipline integrates them to form the whole system, a
system whose properties exceed the sum of its parts.
 Systems thinking cannot be achieved without the other core
disciplines: personal mastery, team learning, mental models
and shared vision.

Popular concept of system

input process output

System is a



Personal Mental
Mastery Models

Systems Shared
Thinking Vision


System is Relationships



Construct and analyze

construct analyze


A system is a larger world
College (or College System)




Community (home for this group of students)

Still larger view : we need to analysis

Systems Thinking
 Integrating all the functions in an Organisation into a
cohesive structure.

 It is the discipline that integrates the others, fusing them into

a coherent body of theory & practice.
Making It Work: The Tricky Part:

Management must • People find it hard to see the

whole pattern of change.
 Understand the concepts to put into place • Takes time to see newly
 Take feedback to reinforce system initiated ideas work.
 Look at the whole picture, not “snap • Easier to learn at an early
shots in time”. stage rather than at later stage.
 Have system maps
 Provide the right workplace conditions
Personal Mastery: How it
can be Achieved?

Personal Mastery
 Personal mastery is the process of
continually clarifying and deepening an
individual's personal vision.
 This is a matter of personal choice for the
individual and involves continually
assessing the gap between their current
and desired proficiencies in an objective
manner, and practicing and refining skills
until they are internalized.
 This develops self esteem and creates the
confidence to tackle new challenges.
Organizational Behavior:
Conflicts in Organizations
• Levels of Conflict
1. Intrapersonal Conflict
2. Interpersonal Conflict
3. Intragroup Conflict
4. Intergroup Conflict
5. Intraorganizational Conflict
6. Interorganizational Conflict

Organizational Behavior
Conflict in Organizations
• Interpersonal Conflict Management
1. Force
2. Withdrawal
3. Smoothing
4. Compromise
5. Mediation and Arbitration
6. Superordinate Goals
7. Problem Solving
8. Dialogue

Importance of



It teaches fighting


Multi-way communication
Take decision by voting

Dialogue is constructing
Dialogue is art of listening. Here
people learn to listen to learn not only words
but all facets of the presence of others in
their context
 Dialogue is exploring for
construction not an agreement

Dialogue is checking

Your own assumptions

And others

 Dictating: “Here’s what I say, and
never mind Why” ( dysfunctional )
 Asserting: “Here’s want I say, and
here’s want I say it.”
 Explaining: “Here’s how the world
works and why I can see it that why.”

 Skillful discussion: (Balancing advocacy-
encouragement and inquiry) genuinely curious
makes reasoning explicit asks others about
assumptions without being critical or accusing)
 Dialogue: suspending all assumptions creating
a “container” in which collective thinking can
 Politicking: giving the impression of balancing
advocacy and inquiry, while being close-
minded (dysfunctional)

 Bystanding: Making comments which
pertain to the group process, but not
to content.
 Sensing: Watching the conversation
flow without saying much, but keenly
aware of all that transpires.
 Withdrawing: Mentally checking out of
the room, and not paying attention.
 Interrogating: “Why can’t you see that
your point of view is wrong?”
 Clarifying: “What is the question we
are trying to answer?”
 Interviewing: Exploring others’ points
of view, and the reasons behind them.

Special rules of dialogue

 Circular arrangements; not rows and

column type
 Agenda

 Chairperson

 Language

 Decisions

Personal Mastery
creative tension in rubber band



Personal mastery
beliefs, reality, vision

Personal Mastery

 Personal & professional development that is in sync with the

organisation’s goals.
 It is discipline of ‘continually clarifying & deepening our personal vision,
of focusing our energies, of developing patience, & of seeing reality

Making It Work
The Tricky Part
Management must
• Resistance to PM due to difficulty
 Redefine employees job in quantifying results.
 Provide the right conditions for employees • Ideas behind PM have been
to be proactive
 Generate a sense of purpose heard before.
 Develop competencies of employees • People forced to develop PM -
 Create situations for employees to have may do more harm than good.
personal vision, holding creative tension &
recognizing own strengths.
Mental Models
 Each individual has an internal image of the world, with
deeply ingrained assumptions. Individuals will act according
to the true mental model that they subconsciously hold, not
according to the theories which they claim to believe.
 If team members can constructively challenge each others'
ideas and assumptions, they can begin to perceive their
mental models, and to change these to create a shared
mental model for the team. This is important as the
individual's mental model will control what they think can or
cannot be done.
 It is a framework for the cognitive processes of our mind. In
other words, it determines how we think and act. Winning in
arm wrestling means the act of lowering their partner's arm to
the table. Most people struggle against their partner to win.
Their mental model is that there can be only one winner in
arm wrestling and that this is done by lowering their partner's
arm more times than their partner can do the same thing to

Mental Models
 Internalised frameworks & generalisations of how an organisation works
& responds to its environment.

 It starts with turning the mirror inwards; learning to unearth our internal
picture of the world, to bring them to the surface & hold them rigoursly
to scrutiny.
Making It Work
The Tricky Part
 Skills learnt must be
 put into regular practice
• Managers not always very skilled
in implementing new ideas
 continually challenged
• People find it difficult to
 Strong role of manager to integrate mental
challenge assumptions they
modelling and systems-thinking skills.
believe to be “the case”
 Allowing ‘learningful’ conversations that balance
• Some people act in reutilised
inquiry & scrutiny.

ways when they are at work

Shared Vision
 To create a shared vision, large
numbers of eligible people within the
organization must be empowered to
draft it, and create a single image of
the future.
 All members of the organization must
understand, share and contribute to
the vision for it to become reality.
 With a shared vision, people will do
things because they want to, not
because they have to.
Shared Vision

 Developing commitment using “shared picture of the

future"; Everyone working for a common, agreed upon

Making It Work
The Tricky Part
Management must
• Compliance not commitment
 Foster genuine commitment & enrolment rather • Extrinsic visions are usually
than compliance.
 focus & generate energy for learning; personally held and are
put together by many not a few

 better when considered intrinsically at the
organisational level. • Vision is usually top-down –
 Have discussion on vision for better clarity do not have as good an affect
as they should
Team Learning
 Team learning focuses on the learning ability of the
group. Adults learn best from each other, by reflecting
on how they are addressing problems, questioning
assumptions, and receiving feedback from their team
and from their results.
 With team learning, the learning ability of the group
becomes greater than the learning ability of any
individual in the group.
 Learning stages are:
 Forming
 Storming
 Norming
 Performing

Team Learning
 People working as teams & therefore learning
as teams.

 It starts with a dialogue, the capacity of

members of a team to suspend assumptions
& enter into genuine ‘thinking together’.
Making It Work The Tricky Part
Management must
• practice, and consistency, no
 Everyone must pull in the same direction
quick fixes
 Teams must master the art of dialogue and • boredom sets in
discussion • open minded with one’s own
 Conflict can still appear in good team learning views and the views of others
 BUT essentially a unitary frame of reference

Mental Models: you and
around you

attitudes + perception
attitudes + perception

you 57
those around you
Shared visions
Shared Vision

Personal 1

Personal 2
Personal 3

Personal visions: variation

Division A

Division B Marketing Finance

Division C R&D

Shared Vision: fully aligned

Team coherence and alignment

Knowledge of systems’ thinking is





Management of systems is
achieved by

• Bringing changes outside

• Changes inside yourself

Learning Organization

'Organizations learn only through

individuals that learn. Individuals'
learning does not guarantee
organizational learning. But without it
no organizational learning occurs.‘
Senge, Peter, 1994

Learning Organization
Senge (1990) defines the Learning Organization as
the organization "in which you learn because learning
is so insinuated into the fabric of life." Also, he defines
Learning Organization as "a group of people
continually enhancing their capacity to create what
they want to create."
Learning Organization is an "Organization with an
ingrained philosophy for anticipating, reacting and
responding to change, complexity and uncertainty."
The concept of Learning Organization is increasingly
relevant given the increasing complexity and
uncertainty of the organizational environment. As
Senge (1990) remarks: "The rate at which
66 learn may become the only sustainable
source of competitive advantage."
Learning Organization
McGill et al. (1992) define the
Learning Organization as "a company
that can respond to new information
by altering the very "programming"
by which information is processed
and evaluated."

Why there is a need for
Learning Organisation

 Business becoming more complex & globally


 Excelling in a dynamic business environment

requires more understanding, knowledge,
preparation & agreement than one person’s
expertise experience provides.

 Continuous improvement is the order of the day – it

requires a commitment to learning.
Learning Organization
Jeanne Meister (2004) reports that “learning organizations
whose performance correlated with excellent business
results show mastery in seven key areas":

3. Executives are known as much for following as they are

for their leadership.

5. They enthusiastically invite and willingly take the good

advice they seek from others.

7. They are defined by openness to employee climate

surveys, suggestion systems and work clusters that
empower subordinates to contribute meaningful solutions.
Learning Organization
1. They understand that innovation thrives wherever
new ideas, diverse views, and vigorous debate are

3. They gather information from outside the four walls

of their business.

5. They go to great lengths to solicit help and wisdom

from vendors and suppliers, learning from their
understanding of market trends, technological
directions and current competitive landscape.

7. They understand that moving from commodity to

experience begins and ends with the awareness of the
customer view.

Learning Organization

 Learning Organization has

the ability to learn faster
than their competitors.

Organization Learning

Organization Learning

“Individual learning does not guarantee

organizational learning," organizational
learning can and does occur with
no specifically related individual
learning. That is, the environmental
consequences of organizational
behavior can be fed back to the
organization and shape future
organizational behavior without
requiring individual learning at all.
Organization Learning (OL)

Organizational Learning (OL) has

become very prominent in the current
scenario. Managers see OL as a
powerful tool to improve the performance
of an organization. It is not only the
scholars of organization studies who are
interested in the phenomenon of OL but
also the practitioners who have to deal
with the subject of OL.
Organization Learning
Two different processes of organizational
change that are associated with OL:
 Adaptive learning, i.e. changes that have
been made in reaction to changed
environmental conditions .

 Proactive learning, i.e organizational

changes that have been made on a more
willful basis. This is learning which goes
beyond the simple reacting to environmental
Organization Learning

Adaptive learning is a process of incremental

changes. Adaptive learning is more automatic and
less cognitively induced than proactive learning.
The adaptive learning compared to proactive
learning is also expressed by the different labels
which have been used to describe these two types of
OL: “Single-Loop versus Double-Loop Learning” (
Argyris and Schön, 1978), “Lower Level versus
Higher Level Learning” (Fiol and Lyles, 1985),
“Tactical versus Strategic Learning” (Dodgson
, 1991) “Adaptive versus Generative Learning” (
Organization Learning
Argyris (1977) defines organizational
learning as the process of "detection and
correction of errors." In his view organizations
learn through individuals acting as agents for
them: "The individuals' learning activities, in
turn, are facilitated or inhibited by an
ecological system of factors that may be
called an organizational learning system"

Organization Learning
Huber (1991) considers four constructs as integrally
linked to organizational learning: knowledge
acquisition, information distribution, information
interpretation, and organizational memory. He
clarifies that learning need not be conscious or
intentional. Learning does not always increase the
learner's effectiveness, or even potential effectiveness.
Moreover, learning need not result in observable
changes in behavior. Taking a behavioral
perspective, Huber (1991) notes: An entity learns if,
through its processing of information, the range of its
potential behaviors is changed.
Organization Learning
“Organizational Learning is the process within
the organization by which knowledge about
action-outcome relationships and the effect of
the environment on these relationships is
developed" (Duncan & Weiss 1979).
In his view, "a more radical approach would
take the position that individual learning occurs
when people give a different response to the
same stimulus, but Organizational Learning
occurs when groups of people give the same
response to different stimuli."
Organizational Learning
vs. Learning Organization
 Ang & Joseph (1996) contrast
Organizational Learning and Learning
Organization in terms of process versus
 McGill et al. (1992) do not distinguish
between Learning Organization and
Organizational Learning. They define
Organizational Learning as the ability of an
organization to gain insight and
understanding from experience through
experimentation, observation, analysis, and
a willingness to examine both successes
and failures.
Adaptive Learning vs. Generative

Adaptive Learning or single-loop learning focuses on

solving problems in the present without examining
the appropriateness of current learning behaviors.
Adaptive organizations focus on incremental
improvements, often based upon the past track record
of success. Essentially, they don't question the
fundamental assumptions underlying the existing
ways of doing work. The essential difference is
between being adaptive and having adaptability.
Adaptive learning is about coping.

Adaptive Learning vs. Generative Learning
Thus Adaptive learning is about coping.
Senge (1990) elaborated that increasing adaptive ness is
only the first stage; companies need to focus on
Generative Learning or "double-loop learning"
Generative Learning is about creating - it requires
"systemic thinking," "shared vision," "personal mastery,"
"team learning," and "creative tension" [between the
vision and the current reality]
Argyris 1977- Generative learning emphasizes
continuous experimentation and feedback in an ongoing
examination of the very way organizations go about
defining and solving problems.
Managers' Role in the Learning Organization
Senge (1990) argues that the leader's role in
the Learning Organization is that of a
designer, teacher, and steward who can build
shared vision and challenge prevailing
mental models.
A Leader/Manager is responsible for building
organizations where people are continually
expanding their capabilities to shape their
future -- that is, leaders are responsible for

Learning Organization
The key ingredient of the Learning Organization is in how
organizations process their managerial experiences. In
Learning Organizations/Managers learn from their
experiences rather than being bound by their past

In Generative Learning Organizations, the ability of an

organization/manager is not measured by what it knows
(that is the product of learning), bur rather by how it
learns -- the process of learning. Management practices
encourage, recognize, and reward: openness, systemic
thinking, creativity, a sense of efficacy, and empathy.

Optimizing Organizational
1 -View learning as work and work as
learning. Recognize learning in all it's forms
in order to find ways to nurture it and connect
it across the organization.

2 -Count on the informal.

3 - If there is a learning problem, look for

patterns of social participation and
Optimizing Organizational
4 - Keep learning as close to practice as possible. Be
suspicious of any process that attempts to extract knowledge from
the communities of practice where it is kept alive, to transform
this knowledge into a curriculum, and to deliver it outside of
5 - Treat Communities of practice as assets. Encouraging
learning communities by supporting reflection processes
and access to information as part of the practice itself.
Given the right conditions - enough understanding of
circumstances, access to resources and control over their
destiny - communities of practice can use their shared
history86as a social resource to learn very much, very fast.
Optimizing Organizational
6-View individuals as members of communities of practice,
not by stereotyping them, but by honoring the
meaningfulness of their participation. Recognize, for example,
that the cadre of volunteers who staff the hospital's gift or coffee shops
are not only members of the community of volunteers but also an
informal public relations community who give people directions and
information, and convey, with every contact, that the hospital is a
friendly (or unfriendly) place.

7 - Encourage the formation and deepening of communities of practice

by legitimizing the work of pulling them together and valuing the
informal learning facilitate. If staff nurses come up with an idea for
improving patient care over lunch, then take that idea to their
supervisor, and are met with a response like, "Well, write up a proposal
and the appropriate committee will review it,"
Optimizing Organizational
8 - Manage boundaries between communities of
practice as opportunities for learning. Recognize
the strengths and weaknesses of objects and people in
their ability to bridge across practices. A protocol, for
instance, becomes useful to the extent that someone can
negotiate its relevance to a specific patient.
9 - Expect transformations, misunderstandings,
and reinterpretations when people, artifacts and
information cross boundaries of practice. Pay
particular attention to artifacts and documents that are
supposed to create links across boundaries. When in
doubt, have objects accompanied by someone.
Optimizing Organizational
10 - Value the work of brokering learning
among communities; it often does not look
like work. The connection across departments provided
by a group of caregivers going to lunch together can be as
essential to the quality of care as any protocol.
11 - Be attuned to the emergence of new
practices at boundaries. The value of these new
practices may initially not be recognizable by the criteria of
existing practices.
12 - View the organization as a constellation of
interconnected practices. Give local communities
enough information and encouragement to negotiate
how they fit within the whole and contribute to the
89 of the organization.
Optimizing Organizational
13 - Put communities of practice in charge of their
learning, recognizing that they need access to
other practices in order to proceed. No practice
can fully organize the learning of another. But at the
same time, no practice can fully organize its own
learning, because no practice has the full picture.
14 - Make sure that the organizational apparatus is
in the service of practices, and not the other way
around. Avoid organizational demands that do not
somehow serve the practices on which they are made.
The purpose of having organizations is not to replace
communities of practice with an abstract sense of
affiliation, but to recognize their existence and to
provide the resources and information to help them
locate their practices in a broader context and align
with one
90 another in order to work together.
Future Organisations

Organisation Everybody is
Learning Everybody is
Organisation  Learning

Industrial  Learning  Teaching &

Organisation being taught
Everybody is  Teaching &
Top learns being taught  Coaching &
&  Learning
being coached

The End