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What is a Learning Group?

The Learning Group

  1. Learning groups are best created with about six people from varying parts of the organisation.

  2. Their role is firstly to agree a learning contract with each person and, secondly, to support them in achieving it.

  3. But the group has a wider value. It provides a safe environment where business problems can be raised and addressed.

  4. Within learning groups, something that goes beyond networking occurs. People develop insights into the realities of other parts of the business and they start to see the value of social capital. They increase their levels of trust and sharing with other people. As one Director put it: ´I passed on business to someone in a different department that previously I would have kept to myself. I'd come to realise that these people were OK and that they wouldn't screw up and lose me a client. And I knew that there was someone on the end of a phone or email that I could trust if there were any problems.`

  5. But making learning groups work isn't easy. Just putting people together and telling them to act as a learning group usually ends in failure. Learning groups ideally need to be set up as part of a wider strategy. And they need learning group advisers working with them in order to maximise the benefits of their time together.