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The impact of a learning organization on performance: Focusing on knowledge performance and financial performance

Kyoungshin Kim (Department of Lifelong Education, Administration and Policy, The University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA)
Karen E. Watkins (Department of Lifelong Education, Administration and Policy, The University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA)
Zhenqiu (Laura) Lu (Department of Educational Psychology (Quantitative Methods), The University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA)

European Journal of Training and Development

ISSN: 2046-9012

Article publication date: 20 February 2017

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine the relationships among a learning organization, knowledge and financial performance using the Dimensions of the Learning Organization Questionnaire and its abbreviated version.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used a secondary data set and performed second-order factor analysis and structural equation modeling for testing the proposed relationships.

Findings

The study found that a learning organization has a positive effect on knowledge performance; knowledge performance has a positive effect on financial performance; and knowledge performance fully mediates the relationship between a learning organization and financial performance.

Research limitations/implications

This study contributes to validating the current dimensionality of the theoretical framework of a learning organization proposed by Watkins and Marsick (1993, 1996) and offers a valid conceptual framework of the relationship among the learning culture and organizational performance dimensions.

Practical implications

This study re-stresses the significance of the learning and knowledge generated by the human resources of an organization and developed by human resource development practitioners.

Originality/value

This study is valuable to human resource development scholars and practitioners interested in improving and measuring organizational performance.

Keywords

Citation

Kim, K., Watkins, K.E. and Lu, Z.(L). (2017), "The impact of a learning organization on performance: Focusing on knowledge performance and financial performance", European Journal of Training and Development, Vol. 41 No. 2, pp. 177-193. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJTD-01-2016-0003

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited