While companies try to improve themselves, their processes and people, they also try to keep up with knowledge. And knowledge is constantly renewing, shifting, diversifying and deepening. The efforts of companies and the variability of information sometimes cause chaos. This is where the importance of being a learning organisation emerges. If you are one of the learning organisations, you benefit as acquiring knowledge and renewal are part of your DNA. If you take long breaks and then, in the times of crisis you start chasing knowledge, what happens to you will be the same to what has happened to hundreds of companies around the world: We did it, but we couldn’t get results!
And what is often done without good results are training programmes without a strategy.
Yet, recovery and improvement require continuity. Commitment to learning also brings along the benefits.
What is a learning organization?
According to global definitions, a learning organization is an organization that learning and development are not only in its business processes but also embedded in its culture: they actively acquire knowledge and are quick to implement it. It is the norm to carry out experimental studies in such organizations, to benefit from the results of these studies – positive or negative – and to create processes based on knowledge. All doors are open to new knowledge, and the name of acquiring knowledge is not getting “training”, but creating a “learning and development” environment.
The cycle of knowledge, experimentation and experience
The high learning and development norm of an organisation drives both leaders and employees to acquire knowledge, experiment and create new knowledge from these experiments. This beneficial cycle both improves and adds dynamism to the processes.
A dynamic learning and development environment, leadership that is not afraid to take risks and employees who are encouraged to innovate, along with a healthy flow of knowledge within the company turn into the most valuable result of today’s business world: Innovation.
In other words, making a difference…
Putting forward what is not there.
As a natural result, creating a new lane, instead of competing…
This is the most important reward of learning organisations.
Resources for learning organizations
What do you encounter when you research how to reach knowledge? Expensive training programs, consultancies, brand new methodologies, researches done in your field of work… All are possible, individually or together.
In addition to these, learning organisations also benefit from the following sources:
They learn from their experience: they accurately understand the cycle of knowledge, experiments and experiences and, make use of it.
They learn from those who have tried out: They follow local and global experiences. They analyse mistakes as well as successes. They constantly follow the companies in their ecosystem. They realise that being the best is about actions, not slogans.
They learn from their employees: Their channels of listening to their employees are always open. They follow ideas, feedback and suggestions without missing out.
Instead of storing the data they collect in form of cool data files and fancy reports, they analyse and incorporate them into planning and, take action.
What is the benefit of being a learning organisation?
We said that the biggest reward of learning organisations is innovation. There is a chain of advantages on the road to innovation:
– Highly engaged employees due to investment made on them
– Continuous improvement
– Increased co-operation and the numerous advantages of this atmosphere
Sustainability, which we position as the last item, is actually the most important need of our planet in every field. Organizations that prioritize learning increase their chances of accessing the future. When innovation is embedded in the organisational culture, employees can develop their skills while instilling in new hires the shared value of learning. External stakeholders, such as customers or investors, also feel it. The shared development environment turns into social benefits, solutions for the future, social responsibility projects at all scales and concrete steps.
Think again from this perspective: Are you one of the learning organizations?