Co-learning through consensus

co-learning organizationA learning organization is innovative by definition

Learning at individual level has become an available commodity, easier to manage than ever before. Nevertheless the current challenge is learning together. co-learning. The major part of what is made: products, services or tasks, is made collectively. Our environment and values are built collectively as well as workplaces and working rules. Moreover innovation at organizational level is not possible if a kind of co-learning is not happening.

“Senators are wise but senate is idiot” is a quote attributed to Cicero that illustrates the idea that collective learning has been always difficult. “The Fifth Discipline” (Peter Senge, 1990) proposed a model to convert a company into learning organizations (1). According to Senge the 5 disciplines are:

  • 1st Personal mastery. First of all people must be motivated to develop self-management, vision and understanding of reality.
  • 2nd Mental models. Ideas, facts and figures must be clearly represented to facilitate comprehension and influence thinking.
  • 3rd Practice of building a shared vision of future.
  • 4th Team learning understood as the capacity of a group of people to think together
  • System thinking is the 5th discipline that integrates the previous ones.

Online Delphi to facilitate co-learning consensus

Online consensus tools that emulate Delphi method can help to operate the model drawn by Senge.

  • Why? Because online consensus facilitates that people in any organization understands together a mental model, share its vision and think together about any possible actions that may be undertaken.
  • How? All people in the organization are able to see in real time what the organization feels or thinks, and this feedback is a key learning content to improve alignment among organization members.

Once the organization becomes transparent in terms of what is collectively thought, the most difficult think for all of us is to accommodate our position in relation to the collective one.

(1) The Fifth Discipline. The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization

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Professor and researcher at UPC.

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Onsanity’s expertise combines technology, design & science to promote collective intelligence in organisations, merging views from experts in economy, health, sociology or mathematics among others.

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Co-learning through consensus was last modified: May 31st, 2016 by Josep Mª Monguet