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David Garvin
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Human Dimensions of Fire Management
Organizational Learning & Innovation

NRFSN number: 15819
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Creating a learning organization is a much needed, yet difficult to implement asset for any organization. While most managers agree on the importance of building this skill, few understand how to get started, what tools and techniques are needed, or even how to tell when they have truly created a learning organization. This book begins by describing the basic characteristics and processes of a learning organization. Tests to gauge organizational progress are provided as well as practical tips on how to raise the priority placed on learning. Suggestions are also provided on how to overcome common impediments to learning. This book then covers various learning modes and processes. While each involves the same fundamental process of acquiring, interpreting, and applying information, each mode applies them differently. For each mode of learning, Garvin discusses basic properties and necessary supporting conditions and steps for success. Garvin concludes by concentrating on the role of the manager in building a learning organization. Common challenges managers face are discussed as well as ways managers and executives can become better leaders themselves. By focusing on the importance of practice and attention to detail, this book is a useful guide for those who wish to build a learning organization but are unsure how to get started.


Garvin, David A. 2000. Learning in action: a guide to putting the learning organization to work. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 272 p.
ISBN: 1578512514, 9781578512515.

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