Learning Knowledge for Effective Performance

Topics: Learning, Psychology, Organizational learning Pages: 8 (2385 words) Published: April 27, 2012
In today's fast-paced world and highly competitive market, organizations need to adapt the frame of learning in order to survive. According to Businessdictionary.com, 2010, learning is a measurable and relatively permanent change in behavior through experience, instruction or study. Many organizations today are pressured to change. Learning is necessary in engaging in continuous change as it may be fundamental for organizational competitiveness or survival. Peter Senge (1990) proposes that the only organization that will excel in the future-that will be able to analyze , redesign, and measure quickly enough to stay ahead of the competition- are those that tap employee commitment and capacity to learn at all levels of organization.

Organizational learning is the acquisition, application, and mastery, of new tools and methods that allow more rapid improvement of those processes whose improvement is critical to the success of the organization (Schneiderman.A, 2006). Organizational learning discovers the improvements needed within the organization, and ways to re-design them to operate the functions effectively, motivate employees to (perform with their maximum capabilities, promising better future and success to the organisation.) give out their best and help make the world a better place. The five core disciplines identified by Peter Senge are considered by many as organizational leaning efforts. •Systems thinking

Personal mastery
Mental models
Shared vision
Team learning
Some big organizations like Coca-Cola, Motorola, Apple, General Motors and GE and many more have taken organizational learning efforts and have gained effective performance and competitive advantage and succeeded in becoming a learning organization.

A learning organization is an organization skilled at creating, acquiring, interpreting, transferring, and retaining knowledge, and at purposely modifying its behavior to reflect new knowledge and insights (Garvin.D.A, 2000). Learning organization create an atmosphere where people can learn together and create the results they truly desire. It instills organizations with new ideas and information which is a essential component of learning organization. Peter Senge’s 5 disciplines are essential for a learning organization. Systems Thinking is the crucial discipline which brings all the other factors together into a balanced theory and practice.

Figure 1: The 5 Basic disciplines of a learning Figure 2: “The Fifth Discipline” by Peter organization Senge

It allows organizations to see the big picture and differentiate learning patterns within the organization. Using this principles, organizations can work with a system to create solutions to challenging problems in every field as Senge believes that current problems are results of solutions that were applied in the past. Systems thinking involve learning to distinguish general behaviours and create new ones to familiarize with special terms and tools that aid decision making and also allow employees to participate in decision making. It also helps managers to detect repetitive patterns such as common ways of solving problems, present goals and policies that restricts the growth of the organization. It is similar to single-loop learning. Although it takes time to be implemented, it promises a wide range of benefits to companies and improve overall achievement (Delio, 1998).

For example, TPS (Toyota Production System) is an approach created by the founder of Toyota, his son and his engineer that manages logistics, manufacturing and interactions between customer and supplier. TPS was created to bring consistency to the system and enable an effective production...
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