COVID-19, leadership, nurse managers, nurses, organizational learning


Aim: The aim of this study is to test the validity of the Organizational Learning in Hospitals model in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Background: Organizational learning is especially crucial in circumstances of intense, complex, enduring change, as with the COVID-19 pandemic. Nurse managers need additional guidance for fostering organizational learning under such circumstances. The Organizational Learning in Hospitals model may be a helpful resource but requires additional validation.

Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted to gather 19 nurses' first-hand experiences of organizational learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Data were analysed using deductive thematic analysis.

Results: Nurses' experiences of organizational learning generally aligned with the tenets of the model. Specifically, effective organizational learning occurred when the contextual factors and mechanisms portrayed in the model converged. Model and contrary cases illustrate this phenomenon.

Conclusions: This study validates and adds context to the model. It offers practical examples of the contextual factors and mechanisms of organizational learning. Leaders can use the model to guide their efforts to foster organizational learning.

Implications for nursing management: This study reaffirms the importance of nurse leaders' central role in organizational learning. Nurse leaders can use the Organizational Learning in Hospitals model, and the practical examples provided, to foster organizational learning during challenging times.

Original Publication Citation

Lyman, B., Horton, M. K., and Oman, A. (2021). Organizational learning during COVID-19: A qualitative study of nurses’ experiences. Journal of Nursing Management.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Journal of Nursing Management





University Standing at Time of Publication

Associate Professor

Included in

Nursing Commons