Individual and Organizational Barriers Impeding the Establishment of Learning Organizations: An Application on the Egyptian Banking Sector

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The study aims to explore the individual and organizational barriers that impede the establishment of a learning organization. These barriers are studied and analyzed in alignment with Peter Senge’s five disciplines of the Learning Organization (LO). This is an exploratory research; with a small sample size of five international banks in Cairo. Using a qualitative approach, semi-structured interviews were conducted with banks’ managers and self-administered questionnaires were distributed to banks’ employees to study the research individual and organizational variables. This study makes a distinct contribution to the field by proposing a continuum to evaluate the degree of learning organization at any institution. The study indicates that employees’ non-readiness to learn, organizational unsupportive culture and transactional leadership are three barriers towards the establishment of LO. The analysis could not however identify the mechanistic organizational structure as a barrier towards the establishment of a learning organization.