Learning organization practices at Kenya Shell limited
Omadede, Francis Odionyi
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Learning organization is not only one of the most recent concepts but also is strongly and closely linked to the concept of change management which is currently at the heart of every organization that not only desires to succeed but also to survive in this uncertain and dynamic global environment. Kenya Shell Ltd is one of the main Multinational players in the Kenyan Petroleum Industry that continues to undergo market transformation within the uncertain, dynamic and unpredictable environment. It is also the latest multinational in the Kenyan petroleum industry to engage in ownership restructuring move in Kenya. Bearing in mind it’s a subsidiary of the Royal Dutch Shell that has played a significant role globally in contributing to the pool of knowledge in the field of the learning organization, no wonder the researcher established that the organization is committed to practicing learning organization disciplines. This research work had two objectives, to determine the extent to which learning organization disciplines are practiced at Kenya Shell Ltd and to establish the factors influencing the learning organization practices. In order to achieve this objectives personal interview were carried out with senior managers (Their assistants in some cases) by help of an interview guide. The main dimensions determined are; Continuous Learning, Inquiry and dialogue, collaboration and team learning, Embedded systems, Empowerment, System connections and Leadership. It was determined that Kenya shell ltd practiced learning organization disciplines to a large extent. The researcher found out that the organization is not only aware of the learning organization discipline but has integrated the disciplines into its processes, tools and programs to a large extent. The researcher further established the factors that influence the learning organization practices in the organization. The main factor established is the role of the parent organization (Royal Dutch Shell) via strategies, targets and goals to the local organization and the knowledge of learning organization. This is consistent with the arguments that De Geus, 1997;Senge, 1994) Royal Dutch Shell has played a significant role globally in contributing to the pool of knowledge in the field of the learning organization such as the development of the concepts of scenario planning and the living company. The study concluded that the organization to a large extent is practicing the learning organization disciplines which provide a conducive environment for anticipating, embracing and creating change. Therefore this ability to be more proactive and effective in managing change in this continuously dynamic environment should be used to give a more competitive advantage to the organization during the current strategic change involving ownership restructuring in Kenya.