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Can reflection boost competences development in organizations?

Florence Nansubuga (Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.)
John C Munene (Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.)
Joseph M Ntayi (Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.)

European Journal of Training and Development

ISSN: 2046-9012

Article publication date: 6 July 2015

Issue publication date: 6 July 2015




The purpose of this paper is to examine the gaps in some existing competence frameworks and investigate the power of reflection on one’s behavior to improve the process of the competences development.


The authors used a correlational design and a quasi-experimental non-equivalent group design involving a baseline assessment (pre-test) of participants’ ability to reflect on their actions instead of applying the standardized competences. Participants were placed in a treatment group and control groups. The treatment group was exposed to a coaching intervention in reflection and operant competence development. Six months later, the authors conducted post-test assessment to assess effect size caused by the coaching intervention regarding the treatment group’s ability to reflect and transform standardized competences into operant competences.


The results showed that reflection and operant competences correlates significantly. Second, there was a larger effect size between the pre-test and post-test assessment results for the treatment group implying change in reflective practice and acquisition of operant competences.

Practical implications

The results demonstrated the need to utilize reflection as a component that will add value to the existing competence frameworks.


The research adds value to the existing competence development frameworks by introducing reflective practice among managers to create competences that are compatible with the operational context.



Nansubuga, F., Munene, J.C. and Ntayi, J.M. (2015), "Can reflection boost competences development in organizations?", European Journal of Training and Development, Vol. 39 No. 6, pp. 504-521.



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Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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