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The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization (1990)

by Peter Senge

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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2,775143,860 (4.06)1
An MIT Professor's pathbreaking book on building "learning organizations"--Corporations that overcome inherent obstacles to learning and develop dynamic ways to pinpoint the threats that face them and to recognize new opportunities. Not only is the learning organization a new source of competitive advantage, it also offers a marvelously empowering approach to work, one which promises that, as Archimedes put it, "with a lever long enough ... single-handed I can move the world."… (more)
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English (11)  Spanish (1)  French (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (14)
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
Want your team to learn and grow. Read this book. ( )
  Jolene.M | Jul 30, 2020 |
This book is the seminal statement of systems thinking – the philosophic idea that knowledge is increasingly aligned in groups of thought. And the goal of systems thinking is to produce an organization of human endeavors that – wait for it – learns. The learning organization trumps not only individual learners but also established organizations that have ceased to learn/grow/adapt effectively.

While this might seem obvious to those (like myself) in research, much of this runs counter to traditional American management thought. Senge, like many others in new management culture, says that not a hierarchy but the ability to learn across all levels is the distinctive feature of organizations that win. Like Deming and the Gemba Kaizen movement, he cites the productivity of the Toyota automobile corporation over prior decades as his proof. (He writes before Toyota had safety troubles that needed to be addressed.)

As a multi-disciplinary professional, I like Senge’s appreciation of the flatness of organizations. Knowledge, not positions, are what drive organizations forward. By applying a psychology of learning to business and management, he catalogs the practices in which knowledge forms and in which social organizations (not just individuals) learn.

The last full section (which is new to this edition) contains use cases of the application of systems thinking to real organizations in time and space. In it, Senge refines many of his concepts in response to feedback and so demonstrates the quality of learning that he so much espouses.

Engaging, accessible, and creative, this book speaks to those tired of mere control at work and to those who seek mastery at all spheres of life – not at just pleasing the boss. It promises to point the way to future learning and future productivity. It will expand the thoughts and refine the practices of any worker at any level who thumbs through this work.

( )
1 vote scottjpearson | Jan 25, 2020 |
Organizational effectiveness ; Work groups
  Biovitrum | Feb 11, 2019 |
In The Fifth Discipline, Senge describes how companies can rid themselves of the learning “disabilities” that threaten their productivity and success by adopting the strategies of learning organizations—ones in which new and expansive patterns of thinking are nurtured, collective aspiration is set free, and people are continually learning how to create results they truly desire.
Mastering the disciplines Senge outlines in the book will:

• Reignite the spark of genuine learning driven by people focused on what truly matters to them
• Bridge teamwork into macro-creativity
• Free you of confining assumptions and mindsets
• Teach you to see the forest and the trees
• End the struggle between work and personal time ( )
  GRUResourceLibrary | Oct 10, 2016 |
Peter Senge's much admired book on building learning organizations and communities of learning is essential reading for trainers and anyone else interested in how successful learning is fostered. He introduces his key themes--systems thinking, personal mastery, mental models, building a shared vision, and team learning--in the first several pages of the book, then takes us on an engaging exploration of those themes as he shows us how successful learning organizations develop through what he terms the "core learning capabilities for teams": aspiration, reflective conversation, and understanding complexity. Chapter 14--"Strategies"--is particularly helpful through sections on integrating learning and working, connecting with the core of the business, building learning communities, and developing learning infrastructures. ( )
  paulsignorelli | Nov 26, 2010 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)

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Peter Sengeprimary authorall editionscalculated
Galgano, AlbertoPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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An MIT Professor's pathbreaking book on building "learning organizations"--Corporations that overcome inherent obstacles to learning and develop dynamic ways to pinpoint the threats that face them and to recognize new opportunities. Not only is the learning organization a new source of competitive advantage, it also offers a marvelously empowering approach to work, one which promises that, as Archimedes put it, "with a lever long enough ... single-handed I can move the world."

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