The Five Best Ways to Achieve a True Learning Organisation

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One of the biggest concerns for HR specialists in today’s highly competitive climate is how to establish and maintain an effective talent management system. Successful 'people management' depends more than ever upon identifying core competencies and maximising employee engagement. The Federation of European Employers (FedEE) reports.....

All too often it is training budgets and subscriptions to key information sources that are victims of accountanomics.”

Giving the opening address at a conference on ‘Realising the Learning Organisation’ today the Secretary-General of the Federation of European Employers, Robin Chater, outlined five key steps in creating a knowledge-rich and idea-acquisitive culture in a commercial organisation.

1. A clear and simple vision statement: When developing a statement it is necessary to learn from modern marketing approaches by being primarily concerned with the organisation’s positioning strategy. The statement should create a dominant impression in the minds of all actors – from employees to suppliers and customers – and have as its key component the securing of global talent.

2. Focussing on the concept of human capital: A learning organisation respects and develops its human assets. It is concerned with every step in the process of capital formation from on-boarding, acculturation to productive outputs, retention and knowledge capture prior to retirement.

3. Optimising organisation and job design: A badly structured organisation cannot facilitate successful learning. This means that constant attention must be given to design, redesign, job enrichment and the encouragement of employees to release their store of discretionary energy – the potential creativity and enthusiasm that employees can choose to place at the disposal of their employer.

4. Exploiting the power of infographics: All organisations suffer from an information overload – which can lead to key data being overlooked or individuals being so bogged down in detail that they can never make a clear decision. Infographics is a method that allows information to be presented and understood quickly and easily.

5. Ensuring continuous feedback after each significant decision and action: A learning organisation can only sustain itself if it capitalises equally on its successes and failures. If individuals are not allowed to make mistakes or are too heavily penalised when things go wrong then the organisation will stultify and never progress. That is why methods such as contingency planning, open-door policies and 360 degree feedback should be valued and not simply given lip service.

The greatest current danger to the realistion of the learning organisation according to Robin Chater is “the growing power of the finance function in the company boardroom. The recent double dip recession has given accountants the opportunity to take centre stage and their often narrow, unimaginative and short-term perspectives provide no space for the longer term asset of human capital development over the immediacy of bottom line financial concerns. All too often it is training budgets and subscriptions to key information sources that are victims of accountanomics.”

What is FedEE?

The Federation of European Employers (FedEE) is the leading HR think tank for multinational companies operating in Europe. It was founded in 1989 with assistance from the European Commission. It is a corporate member organization current Chaired by the HR Director of Ford Europe.

For further information and comment contact Alison Merrett on 0207 520 9264 or Alison.merrett(at)fedee(dot)com or Robin Chater directly on robin.chater(at)fedee(dot)com

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