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Leadership and learning: Facilitating self-directed learning in enterprises

Smith, PJ, Sadler-Smith, E, Robertson, I and Wakefield, L (2007) Leadership and learning: Facilitating self-directed learning in enterprises Journal of European Industrial Training, 31 (5). pp. 324-335.

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Purpose - The purpose of this research is to show that a key aspect of learning and development of individual employees is that of self-directedness. This paper will consider the role of the leader in facilitating workforce development in terms of employees' self-directedness for learning. The research was designed to investigate the views that "learning leaders" in organizations have towards the development of self-directedness in employees; and to identify strategies that are feasible in developing self-directedness in operating organizations. Design/methodology/approach - This paper draws on a national research project undertaken in 12 organizations in Australia, representing a range of sizes and a number of industry sectors. Data collection involved interviewing learning and development managers in each organization to gauge the relative feasibility of the implementation of a number of pre-identified strategies designed to develop self-directedness among employees within operating work environments. Findings - The research showed that: learning managers and leaders were generally well disposed towards the development of self-directedness, and some had already moved to do so; and identified a number of possible strategies for implementation of varying degrees of feasibility. The paper will consider these findings in relation to the concept of a "learning leader". Research limitations/implications - Although the research was conducted in a diverse set of 12 enterprises, applicability of the results across an even wider set of enterprises would need to be tested. Originality/value - The findings of this research provide guidance to learning and development personnel on feasible strategies to use within their own organization to assist with the development of self-directed learning among employees. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Surrey research (other units)
Authors :
Smith, PJ
Robertson, I
Wakefield, L
Date : 7 June 2007
DOI : 10.1108/03090590710756783
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 16 May 2017 14:46
Last Modified : 24 Jan 2020 13:18

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