Working conditions conducive to learning

Working conditions conducive to learning are arranged in a way that they promote and demand learning processes. Thus the corresponding operational tasks should contain planning, preparation, completion, control and organisation.

Important for the promotion of learning:

  • Independence at work
  • Participation opportunities for the individuals
  • Complexity and variability of the activity
  • Communication and cooperation
  • Frequency and intensity of the feedback
  • Available information at the workplace

Example: Project work
Facilitates the development of competencies if people can mobilize their different competencies in the projects, if the project contains something new beyond what has already been known and the acquired knowledge is systematically structured:

  • Choice of projects for competency development and determination of the time-frame
  • Definition of the requirements on the projects and the collaborators
  • Clarification of the competencies the collaborators shall acquire
  • Determination how the knowledge gained shall be documented and reflected

Example: Job rotation
Facilitates the development of competencies when the operational contents are indeed different, there is a systematic sequence and interrelated knowledge can be gained:

  • Choice of activities to support competencies (depending on the scope of activity)
  • Clarification of the time frame and objectives of the job rotation
  • Agreement on the activity/function perspective for the workplace
  • Clarification of cost absorptions or capacity compensations between the "rotating divisions"

Example: Systematic exchange of experience
Faciliates the development of competencies if an exchange of information and transfer of knowledge takes place, i.e. by visits from other enterprises, divisions or fields:

  • Choice of customers, suppliers, fields/divisions or fairs i.e. to learn new working and manufacturing procedures
  • Clarification on which exchange of experience is important for which collaborator or which activity
  • Determination of costs and expected results of the visits in a standardised form
  • Dissemination of the acquired knowledge to colleagues, e.g. in workshops

Example: Learning islands
Support of decentralised learning directly at the workplace obviates the separation of working from learning:

  • Principle of partially autonomous teamwork
  • Integration of technology, organisation and people
  • Development of active vocational proficiency
  • Continual improvement process as an essential element
  • Embedding in the development of the complete enterprise
  • Support of a culture of self-critical reflection

Example: Self learning

  • Provision of suitable documentation, materials and working requisites
  • Consideration of which knowledge in which time frame should be acquired and how the acquisition of knowledge shall be reflected
  • Allowing sufficient temporal freedom
  • Application of the learned in the working routine
  • Documentation, exchange and reflection of the learning content e.g. with colleagues