May 3, 2023

My Journey to Discovering the Power of Learning Organizations

Jonida Qira from the Albanian General Directorate of Taxation shares her thoughts on why she found the recent workshop “Transforming Public Institutions into Learning Organizations” meaningful, motivational, and inspiring. The event was delivered as part of the EU-funded multi-beneficiary project “Structural Reforms Better Integrated Within Fiscal Frameworks” (FISR2).

“I became interested in the concept of learning organization after I came across two CEF publications: “How a Line Ministry Can Become a Learning Organization” and “How Public Institutions Can Become Learning Organizations”. After reading some articles by Vincent Ribiere and some book reviews about “The Fifth Discipline” (Peter Senge), I decided to be part of this learning event. 

During the event, we learned about the CEF’s methodology of becoming and being a learning organization, and how it can lead to organizational growth and improve the overall scope, quality, and impact of its activities. We were offered a holistic approach to understanding what a learning organization is, and why and how our institution can transform into one with our help as the human capital, the most valuable asset of a public institution. We were also presented with the building blocks of a learning organization, and recommendations on how to start practicing principles that foster a learning and knowledge sharing culture.

With a focus on the practical aspects of knowledge management by developing knowledge management strategies, we did some knowledge-sharing group work. We used “The problem tree” as a tool for systematically analyzing the cause-and-effect relationships of problems in relation to a core problem.

While discussing how to manage knowledge, we agreed that in a world where information is everywhere, the challenge is to identify critical knowledge. During the whole workshop, I kept in my mind questions about the criteria that could be used to identify critical knowledge: Is it relevant? Focused? Shareable? Easy to capture? Easy to validate? At the risk of being lost? I am using this trick also in my work as a knowledge-selective process.

At the end of the event, we made a presentation in pairs of knowledge assets. While engaging with each other, we shared some action plans that can help us better perform daily work tasks and also learned tips on how to share knowledge, improve public speaking, and deliver presentations and elevator pitches.

The event was not only useful but also special and a wonderful way to network and meet colleagues from other countries. The learning process was experiential, dynamic, multicultural, meaningful, interesting, motivational, inspiring, practical, and at the same time fun. I could name so many more takeaways but I will leave it here. I am very satisfied with both the content and the organization of the course. I am also thankful to the CEF team for their support and look forward to new gatherings.”