How Important Is Learning on the Firm's Performance?

By Orlando Petiz Pereira, Ana Martins and Isabel Martins.

Published by The International Journal of Sustainability in Economic, Social and Cultural Context

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Social, economic, organisational, and cultural changes have had an enormous impact on the 21st century. Within this context of change, it is imperative for economic agents to take on the responsibility of dealing with these changes in order to harness organisational sustainability. Therefore, this paper aims to focus on the need for a new and different organisational philosophy which is founded on different values. For this reason, organisations should adopt a different way of managing characterized by a spirit of entrepreneurial creativity, being humanistic in nature. In order for this creativity to emerge, it is vital that employees are able to work in an environment where freedom and accountability prevail. In this regard, organisations redefine their values in order to reap their employees’ creative contributions. These become strategic inputs. This paper focuses on the perceptions that employees have concerning the inherent values prevalent in the structural characteristics of a learning organisation. This research is supported with primary data findings gathered from the health sector in Portugal. The responses obtained in this study seem to show the existence of an organisational culture which does not support the shift in paradigm because they view it as being contradictory to those values which form part of learning organisations and high performance working organisations. It seems evident that there is an urgent need for a change in organisational culture, specifically in the health sector in Portugal, in order to improve the effective and efficient use of knowledge, with the focus being on performance gains, competitive advantage and overall sustainability – harnessing the high performance paradigm.

Keywords: Organisational Learning, Performance, Sustainability, Values

The International Journal of Social Sustainability in Economic, Social and Cultural Context, Volume 9, Issue 2, pp.31-43. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 670.354KB).

Dr. Orlando Petiz Pereira

Associate Professor, School of Economics and Management, University of Minho, Portugal

Ana Martins

Lecturer, Business, Economics and Management Department, Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, Suzhou, Jiangsu, China

Dr. Isabel Martins