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Being a Learning Organisation

A learning organisation is one where people continually expand their capacity to improve; and this section includes good practice guides and information about Putting Things Right, the 1,000 Lives Campaign and other learning tools.

Most organisations will assure you that they are “learning organisations” - or at least are trying to be - but fewer will be able to give you examples of what they have learned in the last twelve months.  Again, it sometimes comes back to culture – what happens if there is criticism of the organisation or its activities? 

Some organisations, or individuals within organisations, will respond by being defensive, others will welcome the occasion as an opportunity to improve what they do.  For processes, the principle of getting it right the first time is the objective; but for policies, really good organisations will know that they are unlikely to get it completely right the first time, and that they need feedback and evaluation so that they can grow and learn. So being a learning organisation means having systems in place to get feedback about the services it provides, and have a loop which uses this feedback to improve what it does and treating complaints seriously and using them as an opportunity to improve. It also involves investing in the training and development of its staff.