A Focus/Will/Capability (F/W/C) System Based Organizational Learning Performance Evaluation Instrument

By K. B. Chuah, Chris R. Cao, Y. C. Chau, K. F. Kwong and M. Y. Law.

Published by The Organization Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In the last few years, Project Action Learning (PAL) of Law and Chuah (2004) has been adopted as an organizational learning (OL) vehicle in a real industrial setting. The PAL implementation needs a more structured evaluation instrument that can be used to monitor the learning dynamics and diagnose the health of learning climate in each OL unit, i.e. the PAL teams. Among the mainstream literatures in relation to the assessment of learning organization, we consider Smith and Tosey’s (1999) work to be the most suitable. Their Focus/Will/Capability (F/W/C) field model has provided us with an insightful idea of assessing OL performance via heuristic measurement. Smith and Tosey (1999) presented their F/W/C-performance system in relatively broad and abstract terms, allowing for the further development to meet the specific needs of certain OL environment with practical organizational settings. In this paper, we have built on to the theoretical framework of this F/W/C-performance model, a set of measurement factors associated with the dynamics and climate of the PAL driven OL. This paper describes the development and pilot testing of this F/W/C system based OL evaluation instrument. The psychometric properties of this instrument are examined through a pilot survey in the case company with an on-going PAL based OL implementation.

Keywords: Organizational Learning (OL), Learning Organization (LO), Focus/Will/Capability-Performance System, Project Action Learning (PAL)

International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, Volume 10, Issue 6, pp.31-50. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 819.541KB).

Dr. K. B. Chuah

Assistant Head and Associate Professor, Department of Manufacturing Engineering and Engineering Management, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Dr. Chuah graduated in Mechanical Engineering from Loughborough University, UK. His PhD was awarded for his work on a US Navy funded project on roughness and hydrodynamic drag. He was a Senior Research Coordinator managing a multidisciplinary Computer Integrated Manufacturing research team at the University of Teesside, UK before starting his lecturing career. He is currently an Associate Professor and Assistant head of the Department of Manufacturing Engineering & Engineering Management, City University of Hong Kong. Apart from being a core faculty of various UG and PG programmes, he also supervises MPhil, PhD and EngD candidates in engineering management, project management and organizational learning.

Chris R. Cao

PhD Candidate, Department of Manufacturing Engineering and Engineering Management, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Mr. Cao is currently a PhD candidate in engineering management from City University of Hong Kong. His research interests include organizational learning (OL), OL facilitation and evaluation, leadership in OL implementation etc. These researches are conducted via a long term on-going company based learning organization project between City University of Hong Kong and SAE Magnetics (SAE). SAE is a successful high-tech electronic component manufacturer. The case company has persisted with its adoption of the organizational learning vehicle, Project Action Learning (PAL) designed by researchers from City University of Hong Kong in the past few years. His current work focuses on reexamining the roles of learning organization facilitators in such an OL context and to develop appropriate processes and interventions to reinforce the effectiveness of the PAL driven OL implementation.

Y. C. Chau

Vice President, Operation Division, SAE Magnetics (H.K.) Ltd, Hong Kong

Mr. Chau received his MBA from the University of South Australia in 2001. He is in the senior management of SAE Magnetics (HK) Ltd, a China-based hi tech electronic components manufacturing company. He is currently a PhD candidate in the Manufacturing Engineering and Engineering Management Department, City University of Hong Kong under the guidance of Dr. KB Chuah. His main research interest focuses on the development of an organization learning strategy and model and its effective implementation in SAE.

K. F. Kwong

Senior Engineer and OL Coordinator, Operation Division, SAE Magnetics (H.K.) Ltd, Hong Kong

Mr. Kwong graduated in BEng Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management from City University of Hong Kong. He is currently a PhD candidate in the Manufacturing Engineering and Engineering Management Department of City University of Hong Kong, under the guidance of Dr. KB Chuah. His research focuses on the development of technology support for the facilitation of organizational learning. At the same time, he works as a quality engineer at SAE Magnetics (HK) Ltd, a China-based hi tech electronic components manufacturing company.

Dr. M. Y. Law

Instructor, Industrial & Systems Engineering Department, Polytechnic University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Dr. Law is currently on the staff at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and also a visiting research fellow at the Graduate Institute of Industrial Engineering of National Taiwan University. She has involved herself in various research projects in the field of high-tech management and technology management in the region. She has conducted several research projects in the Pearl River Delta, Taiwan and Thailand, relating to high-tech entrepreneurship and management.

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