A team that encourages continuous learning is one where learning is the common goal. In a learning organization personal commitment and dedication to personal learning is important as it fits with the organizational-wide learning objectives.
Learning is part of growing both professionally and personally. We learn new skills, new ways of communicating, and new ways to accomplish our work every day. We do so because we often care deeply about our work and want to exceed expectations and produce high quality work products.
At Leap Solutions Group, we take learning very seriously. We believe it is part of our culture and the thread that holds us together as a team. We define ourselves as a learning organization.
What is a Learning Organization?
Learning organizations, according to the systems scientist Peter Senge, are described as organizations “where people continually expand their capacity to create the results they truly desire, where new and expansive patterns of thinking are nurtured, where collective aspiration is set free, and where people are continually learning how to learn together.” Senge popularized the concept of the learning organization in 1990 in his book The Fifth Discipline.
There are five components he describes:
1. Collaborative Culture: Where every individual is treated with respect and as a critical component of the overall vision of the organization. Every voice matters and is heard in a learning organization.
2. Learning Mindset: Every individual agrees that there is always room for growth and grasps a lifelong learning perspective. In a learning organization personal commitment and dedication to personal learning is important as it fits with the organizational-wide learning objectives.
3. Innovation: There is room for innovation and continued improvement. In a learning organization, employees are encouraged to try out new things and are in fact challenged to do so.
4. Leadership: In a learning organization, leadership is committed to providing opportunities for collaboration, learning, and innovation.
5. Shared knowledge: In a learning organization everyone learns from each other.
What Does it Mean to be a Learning Team?
A team that encourages continuous learning is one where learning is the common goal and people bring data, evidence, logic, and solid arguments to the team discussions. A strong team acknowledges the fact that there is always room to grow and learn.
You can ask your team the following questions to inspire reflection and action:
Think about your team right now. What ideal characteristics of a team from your perspective are showing up within your team?
What is the overall purpose of your team?
What core activities show up within the culture that best show the team as a learning and growing team?
What should show up but is not currently in the team culture to support a learning team?
How Do You Learn as a Team?
Okay, so we have shared why a learning organization is imperative and how to take a step forward and be a learning team. But what does that look like? Here is an example from our Leap team.
Coaches that Lunch:
Once a month, the coaching team at Leap Solutions meets for lunch. It serves multiple purposes; we connect, debrief, and most importantly learn from each other. Our topics of discussions vary. Sometimes it is to share a coaching challenge or victory, sometimes we do the exercises we ask our coachees to do, and sometimes we discuss a new coaching technique. We are committed to the growth of the team and the growth of each individual coach. We know we each play a part in the overall mission of Leap Solutions coaching.
What are the Benefits of Learning as a Team?
The benefits are many:
• Solve problems more effectively and be more productive
• Increase your capacity for innovation, creativity, and to learn from your failures
• Become happier and stronger as a team, producing high-quality work and preventing burn out
Are You Ready to Leap?
Leap Solutions is a diverse group of highly skilled management professionals serving our clients with their organizational development, human resources, and executive search and recruitment needs. We have spent decades doing what we feel passionate about helping you feel passionate about what you do. With the ever-changing COVID-19 response, our HR specialists can help you get a handle on the guidelines, programs, and legislation that may impact you and your employees. Through all of our services, we are available to work with you to develop practical solutions and smart planning decisions for your organization’s immediate, near, and long-term needs.
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