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Becoming a Learning Organization in the Financial Industry: A Case Study Open Access

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This study investigated the construct of the learning organization, providing a qualitative analysis of how learning occurs in financial organizations through the lens of Marquardt’s (2011) Systems Learning Organization Model. Data were gathered through five methods: the Learning Organization Profile survey, with 63 participants; document review; observation; focus groups with 10 participants; and one-on-one interviews with 10 participants.Five conclusions were drawn based on the evidence gathered. (1) In a highly regulated financial institution, employees engaged in learning activities beyond the compliance and job-required training. (2) Organizational learning capability was increased through implementation of cross-functional programs and encouragement of informal dialogue across departments and multiple levels of management. (3) The leadership encouraged employees to create partnerships within and outside of the organization. (4) The financial organization was driven to innovate by reviewing customer/employee feedback, by monitoring trends outside the organization, and by examining changes mandated by new laws. (5) The organization used adaptive computer algorithms to enhance learning and on-the-job performance. Future research is needed to continue explore learning organizations and ways to modify existing learning organization models to capture the complexities of today’s business environment.

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