The Learning School

4 02 2010

>Seeks to describe strategy rather than prescribe it.

>Questions how strategies actually form, not how they are formed.

>Strategic management isn’t necessarily “management of change but management by change.”

(This might mean that managers don’t cause change themselves but as the environment changes, managers react to it, pay attention to the changes, and learn how to best react to them.  Managers will come up with ‘emergent’ strategies.)

Basic model of the school:

~Companies need to “learn over time;” they must “learn about a situation as well as their organization’s capability of dealing with it.  Eventually they converge on patterns of behavior that work.”


~A process of learning must be the basis for formulating and implementing strategy because trying to control an unpredictable and changing environment is a near-impossible task.

~It is the collective system of an organization/ several potential strategists (not just upper management) that must learn as the environment changes.

~A leader’s job is not to establish preconceived, deliberate notions of strategy but to manage the process of strategic learning where a balance is sought between thought and action, control and learning, and stability and change.

“Learning is overrated”…

Three problems can result from learning:

-No Strategy

-A Lost Strategy

-Choosing the Wrong Strategy

…Learning can be a very expensive and time-consuming exercise as well.

“Learning is fundamental”

The Learning School of thought “offers a counterbalancing force to the ‘rational’ deliberateness that has for so long dominated the literature and practice of strategic management.

…The reality is that our global and work environment is unpredictable and the learning school is a fresh and practical tool to combat those changes.




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