Organizational and Personal Learning

Organizational and Personal Learning - Baldrige Health Care Core Value

(Click on any blue word below to link to its definition)

Organizational and Personal Learning

Achieving the highest levels of organizational performance requires a well-executed approach to organizational and personal learning that includes sharing knowledge via systematic processes. Organizational learning includes both continuous improvement of existing approaches and significant change or innovation, leading to new goals and approaches. Learning needs to be embedded in the way your organization operates. This means that learning (1) is a regular part of daily work; (2) is practiced at personal, department/work unit, and organizational levels; (3) results in solving problems at their source (“root cause”); (4) is focused on building and sharing knowledge throughout your organization; and (5) is driven by opportunities to effect significant, meaningful change and to innovate. Sources for learning include staff members’ and volunteers’ ideas, health care research findings, patients' and stakeholders’ input, best-practice sharing, and benchmarking.

Organizational learning can result in (1) enhancing value to patients through new and improved health care services; (2) developing new health care business opportunities; (3) developing evidence-based approaches to medicine and new health care delivery models; (4) improving responsiveness and cycle time performance; (5) increasing productivity and effectiveness in the use of all your resources; and (6) enhancing your organization’s performance in building community health and fulfilling its societal responsibilities.

The success of members of your workforce depends increasingly on having opportunities for personal learning and for practicing new skills. Leaders’ success depends on access to these kinds of opportunities, as well. In organizations that rely on volunteers, the volunteers’ personal learning also is important, and their learning and skill development should be considered with the staff’s. Organizations invest in personal learning through education, training, and other opportunities for continuing growth and development. Such opportunities might include job rotation and increased pay for demonstrated knowledge and skills. On-the-job training offers a cost-effective way to cross-train and to better link training to your organizational needs and priorities. For health care providers, personal learning includes building discipline knowledge and retraining to adjust to a changing health care environment, as well as enhancing knowledge of measurement systems that influence outcome assessments and clinical guidelines, decision trees, care bundles, or critical pathways. Education and training programs may have multiple modes, including computer- and Web-based learning and distance learning.

Personal learning can result in (1) a more engaged, satisfied, and versatile workforce that stays with your organization; (2) organizational cross-functional learning; (3) the building of your organization’s knowledge assets; and (4) an improved environment for innovation.

Thus, learning is directed not only toward better health care services but also toward being more responsive, adaptive, innovative, and efficient—giving your organization health care marketplace sustainability and performance advantages and giving your workforce satisfaction and the motivation to excel. +

Note: Blue words above are links to other Core Values or Baldrige Glossary terms.




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