Nigel Paine

Organizational Learning - Reimagined and Redefined for Our Time

Nigel PaineLondon (UK), December 2023 - Leadership and organizational learning expert Dr Nigel Paine says organizational learning needs a reboot. This series of webinars explores a new operating system for learning, one based on organizational learning. No one individual, however smart, can work out what an organization needs to succeed. But in recent times, a personalised, individualised approach to learning has underpinned learning at work. As organizations face increasing complexity, they need an approach to learning that draws on ideas and insights of the entire organization. This approach is organizational learning.

As a part of Dr Nigel Paine's ongoing research and forthcoming book into organizational learning, he will be sharing insights into how this approach can help individuals and organizations learn and grow, react more quickly to change, and become more resilient.

The aim of this work is to reset learning and development and realign it to focus more on building great organizational learning, in addition to great individual learning, and to build organizations that learn, grow, react, and are resilient.

The first webinar, in association with Learning Technologies, will look at how L&D can be reimagined for the future, highlighting what needs to be fixed in the current learning environment and providing practical steps to take organizations forward.

The following three webinars will look at developing the organizational brain, embracing external insights to drive change, and adopting healthy habits to drive innovation and build resilience.

Guest speakers will share how they are bringing these concepts to life in their organisations. They include, Garry Ridge, Chairman Emeritus WD-40 Company, Culture coach and Founder of The Learning Moment Inc, Dr Ann Schulte, Chief Learning Officer at Proctor and Gamble; and Serena Gonsalves-Fersch, Head of Talent at Software One.

"The explosion of interest in organizational learning from the mid-1990s to the turn of the century was due to a genuine anxiety that organizations were becoming too complex for individuals and individual genius to manage, and that we needed somehow to tap into the zeitgeist of the organization to survive," says Paine.

He continued, "That got displaced largely by personal technology, when we realized that we could personalize and focus down on individual learners and individual learning needs, and as a result we've forgotten about the organization."

Paine says that to achieve organizational learning, we must do away with established hierarchies. This is because organizational learning encompasses everyone within an organization, from the most senior to the most junior. It's a way of being and working - as well as learning. It's the way that individuals interact with each other to ensure that expertise, knowledge, challenges, problems, and learning are widely and freely shared around the organization, without stigma.

Paine concluded, "In a climate where organizational learning is important, people feel able to communicate freely with each other. They can open up and ask questions, admit mistakes, and say that they don't know something, without fearing that those around them will see it as a sign of weakness, a sign of incompetence. They work and learn together, sharing challenges, ideas, and thinking. This is a healthy workplace, one where people are empowered because they are trusted to do their best work, collectively."