Learning Organisation & Its Core Tenets

Topics: Knowledge management, Human resource management, Learning Pages: 6 (1842 words) Published: March 11, 2013

This essay intends to understand the attributes of the learning organisation and its core tenets .For this purpose the case example of Tesco is used. The advantages and disadvantages of applying these practices of Tesco in other established organsiation have been critically analyzed with the help of specific examples.

What is a learning organisation?
According to Peter Sange, the pioneer of the fifth discipline, learning organizations are organisation in which people continually expand their capacity to learn in order to produce result which they truly desire; where innovation and new ways of thinking is encouraged; where collaborative aspiration is set free and people learn to see the big picture. (Senge, 1990)

According to this definition a learning organisation is one in which employees in all departments are given the scope to learn and benefit from the knowledge thus encouraged by the organization as a whole.

Some modern theorists explain the theory as an organization that remembers and learns. In that case, the notion of learning initiates the formulation of policies, processes and procedure. The concept of the learning organisation is more prominent in the modern context as change seems inevitable in a continuously unstable economic context. A continual process of learning, not only in one part of an organisation but the entire unit is warranted for the future survival and sustenance of the business unit. Tesco: the learning organisation

The five dimension of the learning organsiation are to be applied to TESCO’s context in order to better understand their core tenet as a learning organization

Systems thinking:
In Tesco, the system is involved in such a way as to accommodate the learning and development and ways in which the organsiation can work towards improving systems, which give an immediate solution to the problem when faced. The company in its long period of existence has proven to be one of the best training development and skills management certification in the industry. This way of training through fostering learning helps Tesco to continuously innovate and grown in this sector.

Personal mastery:
Employees at Tesco are always given the chance to grow and develop, which they believe contributes to the development of the business. They believe this process of self-learning and development contributes to the over all learning of the organisation. The establishment of the Tesco academy is a proof of the major impact of a learning culture within Tesco. Further each trainee is responsible for his/her development in the organisation. This gives the freedom and aspiration for personal growth among employees.

Building a shared Vision:
The biggest challenge of Tesco is to make sure all the employee share the values of the company and how each of their individual actions will affect the big picture of the organisation. Thus heavy investments were made to understand the ways in which each of the departments affect and helps fulfill the overall purpose and values of the company. Thus a system called the change map, which jots the history, mission, vision, and values of the company, was created to informal and educate employee about what they were working towards. This was supported through discussion and casual meeting through which employees understood the concept of the big picture, easily without any pressure. (BIG Picture, 2012)

Mental Models
These are the basic assumptions and generalization of perceptions of the things around us. Tesco’s options program was a tool developed by them to help employees frame their personal development. Through this Tesco believe that an employees will be able to perceive their environment and thus take initiatives to develop within that environment. This will provide the mental stimulus, for the employees to grow in their perceived environment giving them freedom and momentum to develop. (Times 100, 2012)

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