Preparing the ground for organizational learning: graduate training programme in Japanese organizations in Hong Kong

Mei Ling May WONG

Research output: Book Chapters | Papers in Conference ProceedingsConference paper (refereed)Researchpeer-review


The concept of organizational learning in which organizations must “learn” to remain competitive has been receiving wider attention among both human resource management academics and managers. However, when it comes to designing optimal forms of organizational learning, the human resources of the organization become a crucial element since they should not only perform a set of narrow functions but also embody and act out “the learning spirit”. In this respect, it appears that few Japanese companies in Hong Kong can throw light on this relationship. Hong Kong is under increasing influences from Japanese management practices as the number of Japanese foreign direct investment has been increasing in the past decade. This paper aims to assess critically the myth of Japanese organizational learning and whether it can be transferred to foreign environment. Among the many Japanese management practices, some Japanese retailers attempt to introduce the graduate training programme in Hong Kong subsidiaries. This paper describes the orientation and content of this initial training programme of two Japanese retailers in attempting to enhance “learning spirit” to selected Hong Kong graduate trainees. Although these two case-study companies show different approaches in conducting the programme, especially one has suspended and the Oliver is still conducting the programme, the study shows a common phenomenon that the different cultural orientation between Japan and Hong Kong makes the transfer and implementation of some Japanese practices difficult.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTotal Quality Management
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the first world congress
EditorsGopal K. Kanji
PublisherSpringer Netherlands
ISBN (Electronic)9789401105392
ISBN (Print)9789401042406
Publication statusPublished - 1995
EventFirst World Congress of Total Quality Management -
Duration: 1 Jan 19951 Jan 1995


ConferenceFirst World Congress of Total Quality Management
OtherRoyal Statistical Society and Sheffield Hallam University


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