Competency and Skill Building for Success
(Well over 60,000 persons have read this article. Also published at http://competency-matrix-mapping.blogspot.in/ Due to constant demand of the readers the contents of this article were consolidated, expanded with additional contents, restyled and published as a book titled “Competency Management (Competency Matrix and Competencies)” available from Amazon. You can order your copies of the book online on Amazon)
In this space, you will read all about building competencies and skills to achieve effectiveness and therefore, success in personal, professional, family and social life.
The readers of this write-up will be able to read detailed explanations on the following:
- Manage your personal, family and professional life
- Effectiveness: all about desire, knowledge and skill
- Excellence in any skill is all about “practice”
- Excellence in competencies/skills
- Doing every verb of a dictionary needs skill
- Soft skills and hard skills
- Soft skills and hard skills: more about them
- How much value my competency can add?
- Competency matrix, competency mapping, gap analysis and competency building
- Re-skilling, upscaling the skills and multi-skilling
- Various soft skills/competencies
- Soft skills are important though difficult to learn and master
- Excess of any skill/competence is bad
- Questions often asked in job interviews to evaluate competencies/skills
- Definitions of confusing terms often used while discussing competencies
(The readers who will like reading detailed explanations on various soft competencies/skills are requested to refer: http://soft-competencies-skills.blogspot.com/ or http://shyam-bhatawdekar.blogspot.com/)
You Will Learn to Manage Your Personal, Family and Professional Life
Here I am going to pen down a few very important things for you. If you learn and practice them, you are sure to become very effective. With that enhanced effectiveness, you will be able to manage your entire life very successfully. You will manage all aspects of your life: personal, professional, family and social.
More than 125,000 people from all walks of life have attended my talks, presentations, seminars and workshops (around 40,000 hours of speaking engagements). A large numbers of them tell me that they are benefited.
Effectiveness: All about Desire, Knowledge and Skill
Personal and professional effectiveness means that you can perform a particular task or activity in a superior manner, better than the best benchmark currently available for that task/activity or at least, you should be able to match up with it. It may not be possible to reach that excellence level from the level where you are at present, all of a sudden. However, you can improve upon your effectiveness gradually from your current status to the newly defined status.
You will have to follow a standard operating procedure (SOP or a process) for that.
First, you should have a desire to improve in that particular task/activity. You can take a horse to water but can not make it drink water unless the horse has desire to drink water. Same with human beings too.
Secondly, you should learn the relevant knowledge pertaining to that task. There is lot of knowledge for every task. Some one has written a 200 pages book titled “how to do a great handshake”.
And, then you should practice that task again and again. Practice makes a man (and woman) perfect. There is no short cut to practice. There is no short cut to knowledge and desire also. If you wish to excel in shaking hands with people, first learn from that 200 pages book (make sure that the stuff is authentic) and keep on shaking hands with every one you meet.
Ultimately, you will score 10 on 10 in shaking hands and it will become your habit. You will internalize that skill. It will happen to you, automatically, in the superior most manner, effortlessly.
Excellence in Any Skill is All About “Practice”
In the earlier paragraphs, I mentioned that “practice” makes a man (and a woman) perfect. Its true.
Why do you think that the soldiers and their officers in the armed forces walk smartly (as compared to large numbers of civilians)? Simply because they are given the knowledge on how to walk smartly, they learn the standard operating procedure (SOP, the process) on walking smartly. And, then, they walk every day for hours together in their daily parades/drills. They rehearse and rehearse and try to make it perfect.
So, when you have a desire to pick up any skill and become the best in it, get the required knowledge to perform that skill correctly and then, practice, practice and practice.
You do need skills of all sorts to become successful in your personal, professional, family and social life and you got to be damn good in them if you wish to excel. And who doesn’t?
So, choose a skill and perfect it.
Excellence in Competencies/Skills
You will be able to achieve the excellence in any skill or competency only if you rehearse or practice the learned skill a large number of times. Knowledge alone is no guarantee for achieving great levels in skills or competencies.
Only if you start swimming, you will become a swimmer; mere knowledge of swimming or great theories of swimming will not automatically make you even an ordinary swimmer. Knowledge surely helps and is a must but without doing, it is of no use to you. If you wish to become a good teacher, start teaching the subject you know well. If you want to become an actor, start acting. Seek roles in movies or dramas or TV shows and keep refining your acting by doing it and also applying your knowledge in doing it better. If your desire is to become an author, start writing. Write something every day. And use your knowledge to write even better. Doing is what makes you what you wish to become, knowledge alone does not.
Implementation of knowledge is the name of the game. Wisdom is in knowing what to do and how to do but the virtue is doing it.
Great Knowledge + Zero Implementation = No effectiveness, No results, No success.
Some Knowledge + Some implementation = Some Effectiveness, Some Results, Some Success.
Great Knowledge + Great Implementation = Great Effectiveness, Great Results, Great Success.
There are 4 levels of competencies or skills:
1. Unconsciously incompetent: Ignorance (example: you are not even aware that there are some proper styles of swimming).
2. Consciously incompetent: Acceptance of incompetence and creating a desire to learn (example: you accept that you do not swim properly and you will like to learn the correct styles of swimming).
3. Consciously competent: Gaining the knowledge about the skill to be mastered and begin practicing the knowledge gained (example: gaining knowledge on how to swim using proper styles of swimming and start swimming using the right styles of swimming).
4. Unconsciously competent: Keep practicing the knowledge gained till you gain mastery in the skill (example: you have now become an expert swimmer since you have been swimming using the proper styles of swimming over number of hours and you can now give yourself 9 on 10 or even 10 on 10).
For greater success in life, you should try to reach the unconsciously competent level in the skills required by you for your professional, personal, family and social activities/tasks/projects.
Doing Every Verb of a Dictionary Needs Skill
To sit (properly and decently) needs skill of sitting properly and decently. You have to learn the right way of sitting and then keep doing it that way every time you sit.
To walk (smartly) needs the skill of walking smartly. You have to learn as to how to walk smartly and then practice walking using that knowledge.
To dance (artistically) needs the skill of dancing artistically. (The professional dancers rehearse hours and hours before they are ready to perform in front of an audience or a camera).
To make love (in satisfying manner) does not happen the very first time. You got to learn its theory and then practice it and every time improve upon the way you do it in order to gain the right kind of expertise in it.
So choose the skill you need to and so, wish to develop and learn about its theory and practice it.
Soft Skills and Hard Skills
You will need to sharpen your soft skills as well as your hard skills in order to become effective, efficient and successful in your life and your professions.
Hard skills are to do with the technical skills and soft skills are the behavioral skills. Both types of skills are required for carrying our your professional activities effectively and efficiently. They are also required to be successful in your personal, family and social life.
You should first identify as to which soft skills and hard skills you need to develop. Each person may have his or her unique requirements. Once having identified them, you will need to feel motivated about developing those skills. I have emphasized earlier that there is no short-cut to master the skills. You will have to acquire the right kind of knowledge about those skills and then keep on practicing.
Then, you are there to win the world.
Soft Skills and Hard Skills: More About Them
Hard skills are technical skills. Like writing programs for computers, preparing a balance sheet, working on a particular machine for a particular process in a manufacturing workshop, acting in a television serial or a cinema film, carrying out a surgery etc. You must have proficiency in these skills in order to become a good professional in your chosen fields and to earn decent living.
You can do a still better job of your chosen professions if you also acquire proficiency in those soft skills which are required to perform your jobs better. These soft skills are behavioral in nature. For example, how do you communicate with the people, how good are you in making business presentations, how empathetic you are with the people you come across, can you work as a team member, do you manage your time well and so on. These skills make all the difference.
Mere technical skills allow you certain degree of success. You can achieve higher degree of success if you equip yourself with soft skills too.
Technical skills are obvious and people learning them find it easy to understand and follow the processes of acquiring these skills. However, one wonders as to what is there to learn in soft skills; you are already doing them. Say, communication. You have been speaking and listening from the very young age and so, one may think as to what is there to learn more and how to learn. But if you look around, you may find that some people are more effective in speaking than others. Here is the answer. The people who speak more effectively have learnt and practiced to speak effectively. They have followed and implemented certain processes and guidelines for speaking more effectively. It did hot happen to them accidentally or automatically.
Soft skills make a difference in the external and internal personalities. People who acquire soft skills of high order are more sophisticated, more cultured, more reformed and are found to be more successful in every walk of life.
Therefore, in addition to perfecting your hard skills, also try to perfect your soft skills.
Proficiency Levels of Competencies
In earlier paragraph, I mentioned about competencies or skills having four levels of proficiencies. According to the proficiency level, a person can be classified as:
1. Unconsciously incompetent (or ignorant or almost ignorant)
2. Consciously incompetent (or learner)
3. Consciously competent (or conscious practitioner) and
4. Unconsciously competent (or master)
Every professional requires a mix of number of skills or competencies. Some are his core competencies and others are subsidiary competencies. Now he should be at unconsciously competent level of proficiency in his core competencies i.e. he should have mastery over those competencies. However, being less than having mastery in other subsidiary competencies will not make him a lesser professional since those are only subsidiary or supporting competencies. And he is already perfect in core competencies required for his job.
For example, a vocal singer should be really good at singing though he may not be really all that good at playing the musical instruments. He will still be OK with possessing just about some degree of competencies in some musical instruments. That will help. Or he should be just about somewhat good at communicating with the audience though he may not be the best speaker.
Therefore, it will be a good idea to analyze the core competencies and other supporting competencies that you would need for doing your job effectively. Having done that, you must work out the levels of proficiencies you will like to achieve in each of these competencies.
In most of the corporate organizations, you may find that each of the competencies that is required in that organization is divided into say, 4 or 5 proficiency levels. Each organization will decide and design on the number of these levels and define these levels for each competency or skill, for both- the soft skill or hard skill- as per its specific needs. It will be peculiar for each organization. Yet, just to illustrate, in a generic way, the definition of each level for each competency may look like this:
Level 0: Ignorance: no knowledge or skill proficiency in that particular area or type of competency.
Level 1: Some familiarity and some skill proficiency: but cannot function independently or apply it effectively.
Level 2: So so or average working knowledge and so so or average skill proficiency: can function fairly independently and can apply with reasonable effectiveness.
Level 3: Strong working knowledge and strong working skill proficiency: seldom needs to consult or ask others for guidance or advice in this area and can apply very effectively.
Level 4: Expert knowledge and expert skill proficiency: has mastery over the area, has detailed and in depth knowledge and understanding, master craftsman skill proficiency wise, can apply with tremendous effectiveness and is sought after for advice and guidance by others when they are not in a position to solve the problems.
Having done this, then, for each job position, the organization fixes the level of proficiency of that particular competency that the incumbent who would occupy that position should possess. For example, if a job position requires 2 core competencies C1, C2 and 3 supporting competencies S1, S2 and S3, the organization may specify their proficiency levels as, may be, highest level 4 for core competency C1, level 3 for C2 and lower levels like level 2 for supporting competencies S1 and S2 and level 1 for S3. When the organization recruits a person to fill up this particular job position, the interviewers will like to check up whether the interviewee has these 5 required competencies at the required proficiency levels.
How Much Value My Competency Can Add?
The money you can earn as a professional by using your competency depends squarely on the value it can add. Extent of value derived by the usage of your competency is decided by the user or the customer. If the perception of the customer allows your competency to be seen as a high value adding competency, you can claim more money for providing that competency to your customer and more often than not, the customer will pay you that much. On the other hand even if you reach the highest level of expertise in a particular competency, it is not necessary that you will end up earning more particularly when the customers does not see it delivering high value to him.
It is also a matter of supply and demand. The much needed rare competencies may get paid more since at that point of time they are seen to be delivering high value to its customers in their perception.
An example will illustrate the point brought out in this paragraph. You will generally see that a specialist doctor say, a surgeon will end up earning lots more that the best or most proficient waiter in a restaurant. Yet a chief chef in the same restaurant, if he is worth his salt (as far as proficiency or expertise in cooking is concerned) may also end up earning as much as the doctor or an engineer.
So, it seems that high value adding competencies alone can earn more money for you.
Competency Matrix, Competency Mapping, Gap Analysis and Competency Building
The model to build up your hard and soft skills/competencies and gain excellence in them, in a focused manner, is a four stage model:
1. Developing your competency matrix: By your self analysis and taking help of others (your friends, spouse, parents, brothers and sisters, professional associates, bosses etc), find out the hard and soft skills/competencies you should possess in order to be successful in your professional and family roles. Write them down.
2. Map your own competencies against the competency matrix requirements: Check out if you have those required skills/competencies and are they at the desired level of proficiencies.
3. Analyze the competency gaps: By doing steps 1 & 2, you will come to know your skill/competency gaps. Which are the skills/competencies that are totally absent in you and you should pick them up fast because they are critical to your success. You will also know the skills/competencies which you already have but not at the desired levels of proficiency. Pull up there. Do not worry about other skills/competencies outside of your competency matrix (step 1). Write down these gaps.
4. Bridge the competency gaps: Now is the time to act on the identified gaps (step 3) in skills/competencies. For each skill/competency that you need to improve, you should work out a clear cut time line based action plan. Look out for the sources and resources and also, ways and means to pick up and pull up your skills/competencies found as gaps. Try to reach the desired levels of proficiency in a well defined time span. Implementation and practice are the essential aspects of building skills/competencies as emphasized earlier.
So, go ahead, follow the above-mentioned SOP (model) and become the highly skilled/competent person in your chosen roles and become successful in life- professional, personal, family and social.
Do not bother to look at those skills/competencies which are not appearing in your competency matrix (step 1) though they may look good or your friends may be good at them. Don’t waste your energy and time in picking them up or improving them. If you work on them, you will reach only to a mediocre level from your existing poor level.
However, if you concentrate on your competency matrix (step 1), you will go from strength to strength and in the same period of time, you will reach to excellence level. So, don’t attempt to become mediocre in the skills/competencies not required by you for your success but become excellent in all the skills/competencies required by you for your success.
You will have to work on this model quite frequently, say once or twice every year of your life. There will be changes in profile of jobs, technology, social activities, business practices and many other things and that will impact on your competency matrix.
Re-skilling, Upscaling the Skills and Multi-skilling
In today’s fast changing world where almost everything is changing at a mind boggling pace, you can not rest after achieving high levels of proficiency in the skills required for your personal, professional, family and social activities. If you stop practicing at those skills, you will deteriorate in those skills. Therefore, keep re-skilling yourself in all those skills required for your effectiveness and success. Keep practicing those. It’s like sharpening the saw every now and then.
You will soon realize that the existing job profiles are constantly changing. Some jobs become extinct or may become less lucrative or less paying or you may lose interest in your existing activities etc. Therefore, you have to be alert and look out for more potential opportunities. For example, a coder or a computer programmer may like to up-scale his skills to work as a system analyst or a business analyst or a programming/project manager. So, upscaling in the associated field is the key for long term staying power with lots of career satisfaction and so, the family happiness.
You may like to work in two types of jobs or pursue career in two or more professions. In that case, you have to be skilled in more than one sets of skills. We call it multi-skilling. You may like to be a multi skilled person.
So use re-skilling, upscaling the skills and multi-skilling to your advantage.
Earlier, I have emphasized the importance of acquiring and mastering the soft skills. Hard skills are important and you should never undermine them. They are your bread and butter skills. For example, a tourist guide has to know the technical aspects of his job like showing his tourists the right places in a proper sequence with authentic commentary on them, the legalities of his job, the safety aspect of his tourists etc, yet, he will be more in demand and earn more if he also has the necessary soft skills for the job like manners and etiquette, interpersonal relations with tourists, humor, creativity etc.
Hard skills are more rational types and soft skills improve your emotional intelligence. Soft skills make you more cultured, empathic, understanding, caring and also, more sophisticated and reformed.
You must try to find out what soft skills you should choose to acquire and develop for success in your personal, professional, family and social life.
I am giving below a fairly comprehensive list of soft skills for your guidance.
2. Know yourself (introspection).
3. Openness and flexibility (paradigm shifting).
4. Internal motivation and passion.
5. Action orientation, drive and self initiation.
6. Self development.
7. Self confidence.
11. Composure and self presentation (appearance, manners and etiquette).
12. Intellectual horsepower and learning.
13. Creativity and innovation.
15. Moral courage.
16. Dependability and reliability.
17. Dealing with ambiguity.
18. Time management.
19. Goal setting and result orientation.
20. Decision making.
21. Problem solving and process orientation.
25. Communication (speaking, listening, empathy, body language, writing).
26. Interpersonal skills.
28. Conflict management.
31. Coaching and developing people.
34. Team work.
35. Team building.
36. Consensus building.
37. Conducting meetings.
39. Big picture thinking and strategic thinking.
40. Motivating others.
43. Stress management.
Go through the above list very carefully and tick out the soft skills where you need to pull up yourself. Then, you have to go through the cycle of gaining authentic knowledge of that skill, understanding the process (the SOP) of building that skill, practicing that skill following the process (SOP), practicing it, practicing it and practicing it till you get the mastery over that skill, till that skills gets internalized in you; it becomes your habit (I wrote about this model of skill building in detail, in earlier paragraphs).
Soft Skills Are Important though Difficult to Learn and Master
One can master writing a code in a particular computer language, one can master playing tennis or basket ball or golf, one can master a specific classical dance, one can master singing, one can master acting, one can master cooking a recipe, one can master judo, kung fu or karate, one can master painting, one can master opening and assembling a machine or equipment but mastering soft skills is very very difficult. People work for hours and months and years to acquire, learn, practice and master these hard skills or technical skills or external skills.
However, most people don’t even appreciate that there is something to learn and practice and master in soft skills. For most people, the soft skills just happen, you don’t have to learn them. They think that some people are good at them because they are gifted with them as if it’s out of some genetic or psychic determination. And then they say, “He is naturally good in maintaining great relationships with people, I just can’t be doing that; I am just not cut out for it. I generally mess up my relations with many people”. “He is a born speaker, I am not that talented”. “He has a way to negotiate to resolve conflicts, I create more problems”. These expressions are not mere clichés, people say them with all their seriousness and sound a bit pathetic and diffident towards themselves that they can’t be so good at these things.The truth is that there is hardly any genetic or psychic determination here. The people good at soft skills have mastered soft skills by working at them for hours and years together.
A child learns to communicate (soft skill) when he is around one year of age and it does not happen to him automatically. The child has tremendous desire to learn speaking and then he puts tremendous efforts in developing his vocabulary of words, phrases and sentences with body language, gestures and grunts. And as the child grows over the years he picks up the right ways of speaking as well as the wrong ways of speaking. When he does with the right kind of things, he speaks well and impresses but if he does with wrong things, he derates. The one who keeps correcting and practices more and more the right ways of speaking becomes a good and effective speaker. The one who does not correct himself and does not learn the right ways of speaking falls behind in the soft skill called “speaking”. So soft skill is necessarily an outcome of the desire-knowledge-practice-habit model described earlier.
Excess Is Bad
We know that excess of anything or excess of everything is bad. It is not any different with competencies or skills. Whether it is a hard skill or a soft skill, too much indulgence in it or overdoing that competency can prove to be harmful to self and others, particularly your associates. Mastery over skills is OK but obsession with it and therefore, overdoing it can mean difficulties.
This point will become more clear if I give a few examples.
An over organized person or a person who is really great in planning things can be a very competent person till he starts overdoing it. The moment he starts overdoing it, he may lose sight of other things. He may become too rigid and structured and less tolerant to continuous and quick changes or unavoidable chaotic situations many times prevalent in real life situations. He may also be pretty divorced with the human element; he may not be comfortable associating with people who are otherwise good and efficient but little less organized in his opinion. With this lopsided weight on planning and organizing he loses his overall balance and becomes overall less competent.
Another example that comes to my mind is that of an over confident person. Such a person when he starts overdoing or overusing his self confidence, starts behaving as if he is a know-all type. In the process, he stops listening others’ views or feedback and thus, deprives himself of good ideas, suggestions and recommendations of others around him. In many cases, he may even hurt other people due to his arrogance resulting out of display of his over confidence. These people, then, may not be comfortable associating with him. Overall he is at disadvantage despite being confident.
Persons having mastery over listening skills or interpersonal skills and in turn, overdoing these competencies may have a tendency to be goody goody all the time. They may use more time than really necessary for people’s participation in decision making. Too much listening or even avoiding conflicts or unpleasant situations most of the times in order to maintain great interpersonal relationships may seem to make them look too accommodating and at times, even weak. In emergencies, they may find it difficult to take control of the tough aspects of the situations on their own and the things may slip up.
So, with this discussion, it is easy now to realize that while a good grip and mastery over the skills or competencies are a must, too much indulgence in them or obsession with them or overdoing them may disturb the overall balance between various competencies that are required in order to accomplish various tasks.
Here is the word of caution. While it may not be a good idea to overdo a skill or a competency, it is also important not to compromise or lose integrity in practicing a competency or skill. The two are not the same and should not be confused for one another.
Questions that Are Generally Asked by Job Offering Organizations to Job Seekers to Evaluate Them on Soft Competencies or Soft Skills
• Tell us about an important assignment you handled. How did you manage it and what were the results?
• How do you set up the priorities for your day-to-day work?
• If any of your projects derails, goes behind schedule, how do you pull it up to bring it back on track?
• What is more important to you; processes or results? What ever is your answer, why do you think it that way?
• Can you give an example of any process improvements you achieved recently and what was its impact on various factors?
• Why do you think re-engineering of processes fail many times? Do you think one should not re-engineer but go gradual on improvements?
• How do you rate yourself as a result focused person and why?
• Are you a deadline and timeline conscious person and how do you make sure that they are met?
• Do you like to take the challenges involved in fire fighting or would you rather be more cautious and eliminate such emergencies?
• Have you worked on any cross-functional project? What were your experiences on it as compared to a purely internal or departmental project?
• Do you believe in internal customer care concept? Would you still help the next-in-line department if because of your cooperation it is going to steal the show? Do you any such example from your past experience?
• Do you have at the back of your mind somewhere the requirements of you ultimate external customers? Does your approach to work get guided by it? Can you illustrate the point in light of your experience so far?
• How do you rate yourself as a decision maker? Can you describe any decision making situation where you were at cross roads; a dilemma situation, and you came out as a winner?
• Tell us about a situation where you goofed in decision making? How did you handle it then?
• Can you construct your decision making process and share with us? Take your time to think and then tell us.
• Are you the type of person who wishes to have a 100% correct decision and in the process may miss out on time lines or budget limits etc or will you take a chance to meet the other factors? In either case, tell us why?
• Suppose you take a considered decision in a situation where others are shying away from any commitment but it is important to take decision and it backfires. Do you display courage, own it and face the consequences or do you manipulate an apology or play a blame game or play politics and get scot-free?
• Continuing from the earlier question, then, what is right in an hierarchical formal organizational situation where every one’s authority areas are earmarked, yet decisions are not forthcoming?
• Can you confidently communicate with your superiors your professional ideas? Do the persons high up in the organization hierarchy intimidate you?
•If you are confident and at ease in dealing with superiors, what have you done to build up this kind of confidence?
• How do you update your knowledge and skills? Do you have any specific approach to it? Can you elaborate it?
• Describe your problem solving process.
• Which do you prefer, attend to the problem and give an immediate short term solution so that things move on or would you wait on solving the problem until you have eliminated it from the grass root level?
• Do you encourage participation of your team members or do you push your decisions through them? Provide some examples to illustrate your style.
• In building consensus on a solution to a complex problem, have you faced any difficulties? What were they? How do you manage?
• Do you see the conflicts in your day-to-day work among the people and of people with you? What is your conflict management style?
• Can you describe your conflict handing process? Give an example.
• Do you lose your cool or get angry or frustrated when you get into a conflict with some one? How do you act?
• Did you ever have significant difference of opinion with your boss? What was it? How did you deal with it?
• Has it ever happened with you when your basic values were put to test in an organizational situation. What did you do?
• In your previous jobs, did you work with great teams? Give an example and why do you consider that to be a great team? What was your role and contribution in making it so?
• What are your proposals for development of people working for you? Have you tried some of them?
• What are your leadership qualities? Do people work for you with enthusiasm by taking initiatives? Then, you must also be delegating lots?
• Sometimes it happens that if you work for perfection or 100% quality, you may lose an opportunity, time is of essence. Would you rather push an imperfect product or solution so as to make the most of the opportunity? What’s you take on it?
• Are you a good implementer, an action person? Are you also a good thinker and planner? What is more important for you? Why?
• Can you narrate the problems you faced in implementing any solution that you recently introduced? How did you tackle them?
• Tell us something where you applied your creativity and met with a breakthrough.
• What kind of creativity systems or techniques do you use with your team?
• Do you encourage borrowed or copied creativity or you only appreciate something originally done? Why?
• Can you sell your concept, ideas and solutions to others who matter? Share your experience with us on this.
• How do you rate yourself as a presenter? Are your presentations appreciated by your audience? Can you tell us the kind of feedback you get from them on your presentation?
• Do you have any experience of conducting or coordinating the meetings, either in a room or using teleconferencing facilities? Give one such example and how did the meeting go on various counts?
• You have been assigned a project but you have not been given a clear picture of it; its pretty hazy. Can you still proceed and complete it? Did you do something like this in your earlier jobs?
• In the event when some information is just not available, does the lack of information bother you? Can you work in ambiguous situations? Do you have such an experience to share with us?
• Are you open enough to share your part of information in a team situation or in a cross functional project? Perhaps keeping that information up your sleeve till emergencies arise can be a way to gain importance. Your comments?
• Are you a person who first sees the big picture of things and then go into details or do you do it the other way round? Can you give an example from your work situation.
Definitions of Certain Terms That Clarify Definition of Competency and Skill Better
The terms given below are alphabetically arranged.
Ability: An individual’s capability either developed or not developed (undiscovered, unrealized and untapped). An accountant may be able to sell but has not done so.
Attitude: An individual’s tendency to act in predictable ways. A manager may have humanistic attitude and therefore, he may be compassionate towards people.
Behavior: What an individual performs or does is his behavior and that is observable. It is based on his thinking which is not observable.
Competency: It is the developed ability of an individual. One competency may be a good integration of several allied skills related to the competency. Conducting an effective meeting is a competency that calls for many allied skills like making a meeting agenda, promoting healthy group process, resolving conflicts, managing time etc. Competencies are observable and ratable/measurable.
Knowledge: What an individual knows and comprehends is knowledge. Knowledge may be obtained from formal education, observations, training and experience.
Management: It consists of planning, organizing, staffing, directing (also leading) and controlling.
Potential: It is the predicted future performance of an individual.
Performance: Actual work output/results given by an individual against the expected results or goals/objectives is his performance. It is normally the basis for appraisals and rewards.
Practice: An individual acting as per his or organizational strategies and policies is putting the policies into practice.
Skill: It is the work behavior. In a sense, every verb in a dictionary is a skill. It is micro competency. Allied skills make a competency. In earlier example of conducting meeting, listening is another skill that is essential for conducting effective meetings. Skills are observable and ratable/measurable.
Style: Patterns of behavior is style. A person with humanistic values will have particular sets of behavior towards people and that defines his style.
Traits: They are personal characteristics. For example, an individual can be harsh, arrogant, aggressive or some other person may be polite, just, assertive etc. Many a time, they may not be observable or ratable/measurable.
Order Your Copies of the book “Competency Management” on Amazon
You may like to order your copies of the book “Competency Management (Competency Matrix and Competencies)” right away on Amazon online
For More Guidance, Assistance, Training and Consultation
Training on all the modules of “Leadership and Management”, various “Soft Skills”, “Human Resource Management” and all other areas of management is provided by Prodcons Group’s Mr Shyam Bhatawdekar and/or Dr (Mrs) Kalpana Bhatawdekar, eminent management educationists, management consultants and trainers- par excellence, with distinction of having trained over 150,000 people from around 250 organizations. Implementation of various HR system is also facilitated by the team of Prodcons Group.