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The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization Paperback – Deckle Edge, March 21, 2006
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But learning may be about to become less rare in our organizations. The 21st century brings a networked world of business -- and in this era only living, learning organizations will be able to adapt and survive. All companies will be linked in a global ecosystem. No company will know when and where the next competitor will emerge. To sustain themselves, all organizations will need to constantly innovate and learn.
Senge's book is worth having and keeping on your bookshelf because it gets to the essence of what's needed to create a learning organization. Senge describes five disciplines that must be mastered at all levels of the organization:
1. Personal mastery -- clarifying personal vision, focusing energy, and seeing reality
2. Shared vision -- transforming individual vision into shared vision
3. Mental models -- unearthing internal pictures and understanding how they shape actions
4. Team learning -- suspending judgments and creating dialogue
5.Read more ›
Here's my take on a couple of the disciplines:
Systems Thinking: Believing in myths about business leads us to make the same mistakes again and again. We cannot escape these bad cycles unless we see the whole system of how problems occur and then change the structure that create the problems.
Shared Vision: Forget work-life balance. Think work-life integration. Know why the work you are doing is important to you. Transform your work and workplace to create a learning organization where everyone strives to accomplish a shared vision. That vision sounds idealistic, but it is more realistic than trying to lead two separate lives-work and home.
Unfortunately, the author is very long-winded and over-explains concepts repeatedly - taking what should have been less than 50 pages of information and turning it into a 400 page behemoth that is difficult to slog through.
Several people to whom I have recommended this book have suggested that one order the fieldbook instead, as it contains all of the original work's raw information and models in a 17 page executive summary at the beginning. Most people seem to find that more usable than this book.
According to Peter Senge, "real learning gets to the heart of what it means to be human. Through learning we re-create ourselves. Through learning we become able to do something we never were able to do. Through learning we reperceive the world and our relationship to it. Through learning we extend our capacity to create, to be part of the generative process of life. There is within each of us a deep hunger for this type of learning"--powerful advice indeed from a real learning guru.
This revised and updated edition includes the thoughts and ideas of some successful practitioners, taking into account developments since the first edition was published about 15 years earlier. Do not be intimidated by the length of the book, over 450 pages, as it is very informative, insightful and interesting to read.
I recommend this book for individuals interested in understanding the nature of how organizations develop, how behaviours are formed, and how organizations achieve growth and augment their capabilities. You will learn how to improve the way your organization or department functions, how to review and improve systems and how to develop shared visions, create long term goals among other critical insights.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A must read for anyone who wants to learn about "the learning organization."Published 5 days ago by Maria Mark
The edges of the book were rough, seems they weren't cut right when manufactured. (At least the first page of every chapter extends out past the other pages). Read morePublished 10 days ago by cbj3
A staple of leadership but I found this somewhat dry and poorly presented.Published 28 days ago by Arterra
His perspectives on systems thinking, loops of causality, and indivisible wholes are well conceived. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Jared B. Mason
I highly recommend this book to all HR professionals and chose this rating for it changed my beliefs about how organizations learn.Published 3 months ago by fatih