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Organizational learning as the best business practice for adaptation in times of great changes: a viewpoint

Magdolna Csath (Pázmány Péter Catholic University, Budapest Hungary)

Development and Learning in Organizations

ISSN: 1477-7282

Article publication date: 8 July 2022

Issue publication date: 15 February 2023




This article summarizes survey findings from a recent study that examined how Hungarian companies of different sizes from different business fields responded to the unexpected, disruptive changes caused by the pandemic, and whether they used organizational learning to design a more adaptive and resilience enhancing business model.


The survey was conducted via questionnaires and sent out to a selected group of business leaders of larger enterprises in receipt of state financial support. The survey focused on finding out whether using the fund was accompanied by internal learning. Interviews were also held with small businesses from a randomly selected sample to evaluate the difference in business behavior in companies of different sizes.


The first observation was that it is the value system, personal goals and level of future orientation of the top leaders, rather than the size or field of activity of the business, that determines whether organizational learning is a general practice. Second, smaller businesses may be unable to define “organization learning,” but they are more agile and forward looking. Third, in the sample of larger businesses it was more typical to find top-down decision-making and less interest in creating a learning culture.


This survey covered different sized businesses, using both questionnaire and interview-based information gathering, about the impacts of the pandemic on organizational learning practices. It offers original observations that may be interesting for researchers of the field, and also for practitioners in any country.



Csath, M. (2023), "Organizational learning as the best business practice for adaptation in times of great changes: a viewpoint", Development and Learning in Organizations, Vol. 37 No. 2, pp. 1-3.



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