Frequently Asked Questions – Services FAQ
What are some benefits derived from Action Learning?
Action Learning benefits the organisation as a whole and its members individually and in teams.
Action Learning can:
- Assist succession planning by developing a cadre of highly qualified candidates for promotion to executive leadership positions.
- Deepen participants’ confidence in their leadership and team participation skills.
- Enable participants to establish effective, mutually respectful working relationships with co-workers at all organisational levels.
- Develop competence among individuals and teams in problem-solving and decision-making processes.
- Relate action research/action learning theory and methods to organisational challenges.
- Enhance participants’ capacity to reflect on and learn from their individual and collective experiences.
- Develop in participants an awareness of how their implicit assumptions, beliefs, attitudes, preferences, and organisational interests influence their thinking, decisions and actions.
- Increase competence in preparing and presenting recommendations concerning urgent organisational issues to executive management.
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What are the components of Action Learning?
Action Learning is a powerful problem solving tool that has the amazing capacity to simultaneously build successful leaders, teams and organisations. It involves a small group working on real problems, taking action, and learning both as individuals and as teams. Action has six components,Action Learning is most effective when all six of these components are in operation.
A Problem (project, challenge, opportunity, issue or task).
The problem should be urgent and significant and should be the responsibility of the team to resolve.
An Action Learning group or team.
Ideally composed of 4-8 people who examine an organisational problem that has no easily identifiable solution. The group should be diverse in background and experience.
A process of insightful questioning and reflective listening.
Action Learning tackles problems through a process of first asking questions to clarify the exact nature of the problem, reflecting and identifying possible solutions, and only then taking action. Questions build group dialogue and cohesiveness, generate innovative and systems thinking, and enhance learning results. An action taken on the problem.
There is no real meaningful or practical learning until action is taken and reflected on. Action Learning requires that the group be able to take action on the problem it is addressing. If the group makes recommendations only, it loses its energy, creativity and commitment. A commitment to learning.
Solving an organisational problem provides immediate, short-term benefits to the company. The greater, longer-term multiplier benefits, however, are the learnings gained by each group member and the group as a whole, as well as how those learnings are applied on a systems-wide basis throughout the organisation.
An Action Learning Coach.
The Action Learning coach helps the team members reflect on both what they are learning and how they are solving problems. The coach enables group members to reflect on how they listen, how they may have reframed the problem, how they give each other feedback, how they are planning and working, and what assumptions may be shaping their beliefs and actions. The Action Learning coach also helps the team focus on what they are achieving, what they are finding difficult, what processes they are employing, and the implications of these processes.
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How long does it take to become an Action Learning Accredited Coach?
If you are ready for a deeper understanding of Action Learning, or are considering becoming a certified coach, the two day ACTION LEARNING FOUNDATION session will take you to the next level. This session covers the six components of Action Learning and the two ground rules in detail. Participants will learn the theory behind why Action Learning works, as well as have an opportunity to experience Action Learning both as a participant and/or as a coach. This phase teaches you the fundamental aspects of becoming a coach, and introduces you to the applications of Action Learning. If after this point you see yourself taking the next steps, and have completed the Foundations Workshop, you sign yourself up for the certification program. These two 2-day sessions will cover many “what-if” scenarios. Participants will be required to start an Action Learning program within an organisation. Projects and discussion will centre around successes and challenges faced by the coach. These additional four days provide participants with the skills and experience they need to function as Action Learning coaches in a variety of challenging situations.
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