INTERNATIONAL FOUNDATION FOR ACTION LEARNING
is proud to present the third event in our series
'International Varieties of Action Learning: Origins and Practices'
In-Plant Action Learning
by George Boulden
George Percy Boulden is currently chairman and managing director of Action Learning Associates International, which he founded in 1980, with Professor Reg Revans and Alan Lawlor, to promote the use of Action Learning in solving business problems. His clients have included Motorola, ICL, ACE Insurance, and Roche Pharmaceuticals to help them to design and deliver organizational and personal development programmes. He has worked and continues to work with companies in Japan, the United States, and Central and Eastern Europe, and with international agencies including the ILO, EC Phare, UNDP, WHO, and the Know How Fund. George Boulden is a member of IFAL and a Fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants. He has written several books, papers and articles on action learning and organisational productivity, including In-Plant Action Learning.
What is In-Plant Action Learning?
While individual Action Learning programmes are very powerful in bringing about individual change, they cannot change organisational culture. One approach to this problem has been to apply the Action Learning method on an In-Plant basis, using problems that exist within the company—real problems which it must solve. The approach uses the typical AL structure, in which directors and senior managers are cast as ‘clients’, middle managers as ‘set facilitators’, foremen and supervisors working as ‘fellows’ in action learning teams. The whole process is co-ordinated by external ‘facilitators’. Thus, all managers, supervisors, trade unions and workers are involved in a change programme at the same time. This structure is classical Revans. The main difference is in the application. The In-Plant approach applies traditional Action Learning to the total management structure of a company in a way which involves everybody.
During this session, Boulden will discuss the 'how' of In-Plant Action Learning, and what was achieved with these programmes. We have also asked him to share his recollections and impressions of some of Action Learning’s pioneers, among them Reg Revans, Alan Lawlor and others who worked at the GEC’s Dunchurch facility and the ILO.
For Background and Further Reading and Viewing:
Boulden, George P and De Laat, Richard Peer Group Learning in Roche Pharmaceutical, Action Learning: Research and Practice, Vol. 2, No. 2, September 2005, pp. 1–9
Boulden, George P. In-plant Action Learning. Lutterworth, ALA International , 1993.
Websites and Videos:
About Action Learning Associates - International
A five-part interview with George Boulden on Action Learning and In-Plant Action Learning
Celebrating 70 years of action learning 45th year of the International Foundation for Action learning