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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 14 April 2022

Robert Holmgren and David Sjöberg

The purpose of this study is to explore Swedish police education teachers’ informal workplace learning and its perceived value for their professional development. Two…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore Swedish police education teachers’ informal workplace learning and its perceived value for their professional development. Two categories of teachers, police teachers and university teachers, with different professional knowledge and experience, work together at the police education unit.

Design/methodology/approach

The method used was in-depth interviews with teachers working at a Swedish police education unit.

Findings

Informal workplace learning was perceived by both teacher groups to be of great value for gaining knowledge about the local practice and for their professional development. Their learning emerged in discussions, observations and practically oriented activities in their daily work. Four conclusions: firstly, the teachers’ informal workplace learning was socially and practice-oriented and learning emerged in a collaborative, reciprocal and active process. Secondly, the embodied nature of the learning is evident in the teachers’ joint activities in the teaching practice. Thirdly, it takes time and active involvement in the local practice to become a professional teacher in this kind of education. Fourthly, an educational structure where academic knowledge and experience can be integrated with police knowledge and experience constitutes an important basis for teachers’ professional development in police education and training.

Originality/value

The study’s focus on police education and the professional development of teachers in this specific practice contributes to increased knowledge of the social, practice-oriented and embodied nature of informal workplace learning.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 34 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 January 2022

Seung Hyun Han, Eunjung Oh, Sung Pil Kang, Sumi Lee and Shin Hee Park

The purpose of this study is to investigate the link between informal learning and employees’ in-role performance and whether the mechanism through informal learning

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate the link between informal learning and employees’ in-role performance and whether the mechanism through informal learning mediates the relationships between self-efficacy, job characteristics, trust and in-role performance.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on data (n = 294) obtained from the firms with the Work–Learning Dual System in South Korea, a structural equation modeling (SEM) analysis was conducted.

Findings

The findings indicated that trust and job characteristics affected informal learning and informal learning mediates the relationships of trust and job characteristics with job performance.

Originality/value

The significant contributions of this study to the extant literature on informal learning are as follows: first, the present study investigates a mechanism and a mediating role of informal learning using SEM, while most previous studies in literature have employed qualitative research in informal learning. Second, this study explores the mediating role of informal learning between personal/job-related determinants of informal learning and in-role performance, which has not yet been examined in existing literature. Finally, this study provides practical implications regarding how organizations can facilitate more informal learning among employees to enhance their performance.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 34 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 January 2022

Amber Yun-Ping Lee, Po-Chien Chang and Heng-Yu Chang

The purpose is to examine the cross-level relationship between workplace fun and informal learning with workplace friendship as a mediator and team climate as a moderator.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose is to examine the cross-level relationship between workplace fun and informal learning with workplace friendship as a mediator and team climate as a moderator.

Design/methodology/approach

Adopting a two-wave survey procedure, data were collected from 251 employees working across 45 teams of a leading heat transfer manufacturer in Asia. Hierarchical linear modeling was used to test our hypothesized cross-level moderated mediation model.

Findings

Out of the three forms of workplace fun, only two – manager support for fun and coworker socializing – supported our hypotheses. Therefore, not all types of workplace fun are equal and one of the key factors through which fun influences informal learning is by maintaining harmonious interpersonal interactions and high relationship quality in teams.

Originality/value

Based on social interdependence theory, this study uncovers the cross-level mechanism of how workplace fun affects informal learning. The findings extend existing research on workplace fun by focusing on not only individual factors but also interpersonal and contextual elements. The findings also provide practical implications for managers to understand the possible impact of workplace fun on employees' informal learning.

Details

Employee Relations: The International Journal, vol. 44 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 April 2021

Mansi Rastogi and Osman M. Karatepe

Drawing from work-family enrichment (WFE) model and path-goal theory of motivation, this paper proposes and tests work engagement (WE) as a mediator between informal

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing from work-family enrichment (WFE) model and path-goal theory of motivation, this paper proposes and tests work engagement (WE) as a mediator between informal learning and WFE.

Design/methodology/approach

Questionnaires measuring informal learning, WE and WFE were filled out by 290 hotel employees in India. The abovementioned linkages were tested via structural equation modeling.

Findings

The findings suggest that hotel employees' informal learning fosters their WE and WFE. The findings also reveal that WE partly mediates the impact of informal learning on WFE.

Originality/value

Most of employees' learning efforts in the workplace emerge from informal learning. However, there is still limited information whether employees' informal learning activates their WE, which is a timely and significant topic. Importantly, there is a paucity of evidence appertaining to the effect of informal learning on WFE, which is underrepresented in the current literature. Evidence about the mechanism linking informal learning to WFE is also sparse.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 71 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 19 November 2021

Muhammad Qamar Zia, Tobias M. Huning, Aamir Feroz Shamsi, Muhammad Naveed and Riaz Ahmed Mangi

The goal of this study was to examine the mediating mechanism of informal learning between dimensions of learning climate and organizational citizenship behavior (OCB). In…

Abstract

Purpose

The goal of this study was to examine the mediating mechanism of informal learning between dimensions of learning climate and organizational citizenship behavior (OCB). In addition, the study also aimed to investigate the learning climate, in the dimensions of learning facilitation, learning appreciation and error avoidance as antecedents of informal learning.

Design/methodology/approach

The data were gathered from sports items manufacturing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Sialkot, Pakistan. Sialkot is home to manufacturing businesses that export their products worldwide. Survey data of 318 middle managers collected at 2 different times were used for testing the research model using structural equation modeling (SEM).

Findings

The results demonstrate that facilitation and appreciation learning climate have a positive relationship with informal learning and error-avoidance has a negative relationship with informal learning. The analysis also revealed that informal learning mediated the linkage between learning climate dimensions and OCB. Moreover, informal learning is significantly related to OCB.

Practical implications

HR practitioners and organizational leaders of SMEs can use, encourage and promote informal learning to improve the skills and knowledge of employees at low cost. For instance, management should strategically implement informal learning at the workplace by providing a supportive learning climate.

Originality/value

Previous studies have overlooked the impact of informal learning on OCB and its mediating effect. The present study addresses this gap by examining the mediating mechanism of informal learning between learning climate and OCB.

Details

Evidence-based HRM: a Global Forum for Empirical Scholarship, vol. 10 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-3983

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 February 2020

Gina Grandy and Sharon Mavin

This paper aims to explore how informal and socially situated learning and gendered practices impact the experiences of women learning to lead and the gendered dynamics…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore how informal and socially situated learning and gendered practices impact the experiences of women learning to lead and the gendered dynamics inherent in women’s lived experiences of learning.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors adopt a becoming ontology and a social constructionist perspective. A qualitative approach guided by feminist principles facilitated the surfacing of rich and reflective accounts from women leaders. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 women leader priests in Canada.

Findings

The authors highlight how gendered practices are concealed and revealed through informal learning processes and illustrate this through two themes, informal and socially situated learning as inductive and gendered, and the jolt of gender discrimination in informal learning.

Research limitations/implications

While each account from the women church leaders is highly valued in its own right and the women’s stories have generated new insights, the overall data set is small and not generalizable. Future research should explore further the types of informal learning initiatives and systems, which acknowledge and best support women learning to lead in (gendered) organizations. It should also explore how informal learning informs leadership styles in this and other contexts.

Originality/value

The research demonstrates how informal learning experiences can serve as a site for invisible and unaccounted for gender bias and inform the becoming of women leaders. The research also advances the limited body of work that seeks to better understand the gender dynamics of women’s leadership in faith-based organizations.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal , vol. 35 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 28 May 2019

Timo Kortsch, Eva-Maria Schulte and Simone Kauffeld

In competitive labor markets, promoting employees’ learning becomes a key challenge for companies. However, in small German craft companies, employee development is always…

Abstract

Purpose

In competitive labor markets, promoting employees’ learning becomes a key challenge for companies. However, in small German craft companies, employee development is always connected with worries about employee turnover. This study aims to investigate the current informal learning strategies of craft workers and how they use the strategies, the effect of learning on employees’ internal and external marketability and beneficial workplace characteristics (autonomy, feedback).

Design/methodology/approach

An online prestudy (N = 131) explored current informal learning strategies. In the main study (N = 526), cluster analysis was applied to identify patterns of informal learning strategies. The relations of these patterns to workplace characteristics and marketability were investigated.

Findings

Four informal learning strategies were found (informal learning from oneself, from others, from other sources and from new media). Craft workers used combinations of the strategies (i.e. patterns): three learning patterns (balanced high, person-oriented and balanced low) differed in intensity and combination with the learning strategy use. More intense learning patterns were positively related to internal marketability but were not related to external marketability. Higher autonomy and feedback availability were related to higher learning engagement.

Research limitations/implications

Studies should have a broader view of informal learning strategies concerning different learning patterns. The use of new media is a learning strategy that might increase in the future.

Practical implications

Craft companies could promote different informal learning strategies without worries about employee turnover.

Originality/value

The study reveals how German small- and medium-sized enterprise employees use informal learning strategies in digitalized times and how human resources development can use informal learning strategies.

Details

European Journal of Training and Development, vol. 43 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-9012

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 September 2016

Hyun Jung Cho and Jin-Mo Kim

The purpose of this study is to identify the causal relationship among informal learning, leader-member exchange (LMX), empowerment, job characteristics and job…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to identify the causal relationship among informal learning, leader-member exchange (LMX), empowerment, job characteristics and job self-efficacy and the impact on administrative assistants in corporations. The study aims at providing information for administrative assistants who have worked with their current supervisors for more than one year in a one-to-one administrative assistant role in corporations.

Design/methodology/approach

To ensure the reliability and validity of the questions, statistical analysis was performed using SPSS 18.0. AMOS 18.0 was also used to estimate the causal relationship of the proposed research model.

Findings

The analyses show the following results. Indirect factor loading of LMX and empowerment to informal learning and direct factor loading of job characteristics and job self-efficacy were observed. In the relationship between LMX and informal learning, empowerment had a negative mediating effect and job self-efficacy had a positive mediating effect. In the relationship between empowerment and informal learning, job self-efficacy and job characteristics both had a mediating effect. However, job self-efficacy did not have a mediating effect in the relationship between job characteristics and informal learning.

Originality/value

When considering informal learning, planners should consider both individual characteristics and organizational characteristics. However, informal learning is not directly correlated to the impact of factors related to the executives and organization itself, but rather linked to individual and job characteristics. Hence, promoting job self-efficacy not only requires the individual efforts of employees but also a systematic strategy at the corporate level.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 28 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 15 July 2020

Md Shariful Alam Khandakar and Faizuniah Pangil

The purpose of this paper is to explain the mediation effect of affective commitment on the relationship between human resource management practices and informal workplace…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explain the mediation effect of affective commitment on the relationship between human resource management practices and informal workplace learning.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper develops a conceptual framework along with propositions by integrating comprehensive literatures, in the field of human resource management, affective commitment and informal workplace learning. Through the review of detail literature and based on the situated learning theory (Lave and Wenger, 1991) and organizational support theory (Eisenberger et al., 1986; Rhoades and Eisenberger, 2002; – and Eisenberger, 2006), it is proposed that eight human resource practices could affect informal workplace learning. Moreover, it is also argued that affective commitment could mediate the relationship between HRM practices and informal workplace learning.

Findings

This paper provides a conceptual framework on human resource management practices and informal workplace learning which is mediated by affective commitment.

Originality/value

None of the models presented in the literature details the mediation of affective commitment on the relationship between human resource management practices and informal workplace learning which is mediated by affective commitment as indeed the most recent research on the subject envisages.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2004

Thomas J. Conlon

Informal learning's roots emerged from educational philosophers John Dewey, Kurt Lewin and Mary Parker Follett to theorists Malcolm Knowles and other successive…

9133

Abstract

Informal learning's roots emerged from educational philosophers John Dewey, Kurt Lewin and Mary Parker Follett to theorists Malcolm Knowles and other successive researchers. This paper explores the background and definitions of informal learning and applications to the global workplace. Informal learning's challenges are applied to developing global professional competence, including theory, practice and policy implications. The paper argues that informal learning plays a considerable role in developing professional expertise in the workplace and private life, yet believes no current theoretical model exists to balance conflicts between the role of individual and organizational benefits in a global context.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 28 no. 2/3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

Keywords

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