Employability skills rev 312010
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Employability skills rev 312010



An overview of how personality styles, generations and use of soft skills can affect an individual's impact in the workplace.

An overview of how personality styles, generations and use of soft skills can affect an individual's impact in the workplace.



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  • Pressures is accurate. I see a typo in the red box – also, does this need to be cited? I like the slide, it’s a great beginning.
  • Can’t adjust middle box to delete blank space after second line of text – it’s just that you needed to delete a blank line after the period. Why is this “linked” showing up again? Hmm. Good slide.
  • Had text…lost it
  • Paper assessment to be handed out here: Mini Assessment in file
  • Text in text boxes; need some help here Cite source
  • Possibly include a definition of “blind spot” Add photo
  • This image has been around forever, but it’s a great example of how people’s perspectives can blind them to what’s right in front of their faces.
  • First one references DiSC styles; second one the Melancholy, etc/ Check metacafe.com to see if it’s broken or open
  • Too much text for one slide? Image of “employee” type would work
  • Looking for a way to integrate “animal association” with the personality types without being hokey
  • Fix the stupid bullets – ahhhh
  • Fix bullets
  • Confirm (S or C?)
  • Like this – fix bullets so the boxes match
  • Group exercise…have people explain on what basis they made their choice
  • Group exercise
  • Handout, followed by group discussion; (soft skills): professionalism/work ethic, diversity (of style/motivation)
  • Handout
  • How to handle this? Perhaps better served as a handout?
  • Either have a “Core Competencies” handout or flip chart page that lists each of them
  • Small group discussions for remaining scenarios; thinking of pairing diverse personality styles/generations with different scenarios and/or same styles with same scenarios…debrief should bring out how embracing the differences/input of others can enhance teams and interpersonal communication. Soft skills: professionalism/work ethic, written/oral communications, managing conflict
  • Soft skills: Information technology, ethics/social responsibility (This was originally written as a" blog entry”. Which way is easier for clients to understand? I thought fb because most people either have or know someone who has an fb account. Most people have heard of blogging, but do they know what it is? )
  • Soft skills: Ethics, critical thinking/problem solving, oral/written communication, ethics
  • Soft skills: Lifelong learning/self direction, creativity/innovation (communicating new ideas to others), critical thinking/problem solving
  • Soft skills: Creativity/innovation, information technology, managing (potential) conflict, teamwork
  • Soft skills: Customer service, critical thinking/problem solving, manage conflict, ethics, oral communication
  • Soft skills: critical thinking./problem solving, teamwork, oral communication, managing conflict/negotiation, ethics, diversity, customer service, innovation

Employability skills rev 312010 Employability skills rev 312010 Presentation Transcript

  • Employability Skills: Understanding Yourself and Others Gaining Insight for Career Success Through Intergenerational Workforce Dynamics, Personality Traits and Core Competencies Written by: Kay LeMon, Assistant Training Facilitator Edited by: Heather Coleman, Training Coordinator Angela Bosscher, Training Assistant Ferndale Career Center 713 East Nine Mile Ferndale, MI 48220 248.545.0222 www.twitter.com/ferndalecareer www.facebook. com/ferndalecareercenter www.linkedin/in/ferndalecareercenter 03/01/10
  • The 21 st Century Challenge
      • Interacting with others from distinctly different generations
      • Potentially conflicting personalities
      • The challenge of being measured on intangibles like work e thic, social responsibility, creativity/ innovation, lifelong learning and self direction, among others
    Members of today’s workforce face pressures unlike many workers before them. While having to do more with less, employees of this millennium contend with:
  • The Intergenerational Workforce
    • For the first time in history, four distinct generations are in the workforce at the same time
    Q: What is a generation? A: A segment of a geographically linked population that experiences similar social and cultural events at roughly the same time in their maturation Members of a generation share similar beliefs, values, preferences, priorities, attitudes, expectations and communication styles. Generational change is driven by several factors, including parenting trends, technology, economics and life spans.
  • Generational Overview
      • Mature: 64+ years, 1909 - 1945
      • Baby Boomers: 45 - 63 years old, 1946 – 1964
      • Generation X: 29 - 44 years old, 1965 – 1980
      • Generation Y: 18 - 28 years old, 1981 - 1998
    • Generation Z is here, too…they are typically the children of younger Gen Xers and older Gen Yers and are by far the most technologically advanced generation. Gen Z began in 1999.
  • “ Gaps” Among the Generations
    • Management Styles and Technology
    As members of the younger generations enter the management ranks, supervision styles are evolving from a “military” style to an interactive model Military Model (“Old School”) Interactive Model (“Emerging”) In transition…
  • How has technology affected the workplace?
    • Email and Instant Messaging (“IM”) have greatly reduced the need for face-to-face meetings
    • Text messaging allows instant communication; webinars permit colleagues to connect nationwide
    • Computer video meetings let team members connect, regardless of their location
    • Online presence is a vital consideration in the hiring process today
    • Many companies expect their employees to utilize LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites as part of the business communication process
  • What does this technology shift mean?
    • Working from home or on the road is common
    • Flex-time is overtaking traditional office hours in many businesses
    • Due to the flexibility technology offers, businesses are now able to accommodate employee family commitments – and are retaining employees long-term (Southwest Airlines, Google, Best Buy)
    • Conflicts between Boomers and the GenX/GenY generations may be a result of transitioning management styles and the differing usage of technology
  • Different…or the Same?
    • Each generation deals with issues from its own perspective:
    • Matures and Boomers did not have technology from the early ages of Gen Xers and Yers…and yet they must work with it
    • Members of Generations X and Y have their expertise, but not the experience and wisdom that Boomers and Traditionals bring to the table
    • How do we bring it all together?
    • For additional perspective into this workplace dynamic, register
    • for “The Intergenerational Workforce” workshop.
  • Challenges in Today’s Workforce
    • Understanding generational differences
    • Comprehending (and embracing) personality differences
    • Grasping core competencies
  • “ What are you thinking?”
    • Ever wonder why people act as they do?
    • Everyone has their own:
    • Motivations
    • Goals and objectives
    • Fears
    • Perspectives
  • Temperament is the Answer
    • This explains how siblings can be so different and how a child is nothing like his parents
    • Personality is innate, genetically based
    • Our natural wiring reveals itself early in life:
      • Some babies are easy, some difficult
      • Others are engaging/even personable, while others are reserved, slow to warm up
    Temperament is also known as personality traits, behavioral style or natural wiring
  • Discovering Your Natural Wiring Adapted from http://gregwiens.com/scid
  • While Human Behavior is Unpredictable, All Actions are Motivated It’s easy to make incorrect assumptions about others when we don’t understand what motivates them Individuals do things for their own reasons; no one can motivate someone else based on their own motivations. You CAN create conditions that will encourage someone else to self-motivation. To do that, you need to understand what motivates an individual. Two people can perceive the same situation in very different ways Most of us are more aware of our behavioral strengths than our limitations/challenges You can become more effective when you learn to appreciate and embrace the differences of your co-workers’ behavioral styles and how to bring out the best in yourself and others. Source: Carlson Learning Company, now Inscape Publishing
  • Understanding Motivation/ Perspectives and Blind Spots
    • Every person has an individual behavioral style with particular motivations; things that may seem unimportant to you may be very important to another person. These styles form the perspectives from which people view life events.
    • When you don’t understand “where people are coming from,” this can make communicating with them in a way they understand challenging at best.
    • Think of these exchanges as blind spots.
    • These blind spots can create friction, conflict and frustration.
  • Perspective What do you see?
  • Overview of Styles
    • YouTube - Four Basic Personality Types
  • Expressive/Sanguine (“People Person”) Emphasis: Influencing/persuading
    • Strengths
    • Cheerful
    • Enthusiastic
    • Entertaining
    • Outgoing
    • Flexible
    • Forgiving
    • Vivacious
    • Articulate
    • Optimistic
    • Thrives in an environment of:
    • Popularity, social recognition
    • Public recognition of abilities, accomplishments
    • Group activities outside the workplace
    • Democratic relationships
    • Freedom from control and detail
    • Coaching and counseling
    • Ronald Reagan
    • Magic Johnson
    • FDR
    • Tigger
    President Bill Clinton
  • Expressive
    • Challenges/Tendencies
    • Exaggerates
    • Fickle
    • Forgetful
    • Tends to gossip
    • Smart-alecky
    • Disorganized
    • Distractible
    • Scattered
    • Arrogant
    • Needs others who:
    • Stay on task
    • Seek facts
    • Follow through
    • Prefer dealing with things
    • (rather than people)
    • Develop procedures/ systems
    • Speak directly
    • Approach situations logically
  • Dominant/Choleric (“Driver/In Charge”) Emphasis: Results
    • Strengths
    • Assertive
    • Bold
    • Competitive
    • Decisive
    • Goal/action oriented
    • Leadership/ Authoritative
    • Passionate
    • Self-motivated
    • Thrives in an environment of:
    • Power and authority
    • Wide scope of opportunities
    • Prestige and challenge
    • Opportunity for advancement, individual accomplishments
    • Freedom from control and supervision
    • Challenging assignments
    • Rush Limbaugh
    • General George Patton
    • Margaret Thatcher
    • Bill Gates
    • Albert Einstein
    Michael Jordan
  • Dominant
    • Challenges/Tendencies
    • Aggressive
    • Argumentative
    • Bossy
    • Impatient
    • Pushy
    • Stubborn
    • Easily angered
    • Domineering
    • Needs others who:
    • Acknowledge the needs of others
    • Weigh pros and cons
    • Use caution
    • Calculate risks
    • Research facts
    • Deliberate before deciding
    • Structure a predictable environment
  • Analytical/Melancholic (“Conscientious”) Emphasis: Quality and accuracy
    • Strengths
    • Analytical
    • Artistic
    • Cautious
    • Accurate
    • Sensitive
    • High ideals
    • Reflective
    • Detail oriented
    • Diplomatic
    • Systematic approach/Focused
    • Thrives in an environment where:
    • Quality and accuracy are valued
    • Performance expectations are clearly defined
    • Opportunities exist to demonstrate expertise
    • Specific skills and expertise are recognized
    • Atmosphere is reserved and business like
    • They have control/input over factors that affect their performance
    • “ Why” questions are acknowledged
    Michelle Obama
    • Jane Fonda
    • Gandhi
    • Vice President Al Gore
    • Sandra Day O'Connor
    • George Harrison
    • Hugh Hefner
    • Thomas Jefferson
    • Pope John Paul II
    • Gloria Steinem
    • Martha Stewart
  • Analytical
    • Challenges/Tendencies
    • Aloof
    • Reluctant
    • Unrealistic expectations (of self and others)
    • Strict
    • Timid
    • Distrusting
    • Envious
    • Over-analytical
    • Needs others who:
    • Delegate important tasks
    • Encourage teamwork
    • Make quick decisions
    • State unpopular decisions
    • Compromise
    • Initiate and facilitate discussions
    • Use policies as guidelines
  • Solid/Phlegmatic (“Steady”) Emphasis: cooperation
    • Strengths
    • Calm
    • Composed
    • Dependable
    • Easy-going
    • Mellow
    • Self-controlled
    • Modest
    • Develops specialized skills
    • Good listener
    • Loyal
    • Thrives in an environment where:
    • Status quo is maintained or explanations given when change is needed
    • Minimal conflict exists
    • Identification with a group is possible; teamwork is valued
    • Standard operating procedures are maintained
    • Credit is given for work accomplishments
    • Routine is predictable
    • Work rarely infringes on home life
    • Yasser Arafat
    • George Washington
    • Dwight Eisenhower
    • Gerald Ford
    • Janet Jackson
    • Ringo Starr
    • John Wayne
    • Orson Welles
    • Kevin Costner
    Whoopi Goldberg
  • Steady/Solid
    • Challenges/Tendencies
    • Boring
    • Indecisive
    • Apathetic
    • Procrastinator
    • Sluggish
    • Unenthusiastic
    • Inattentive
    • Needs others who:
    • Work comfortably in an unpredictable environment
    • React quickly to unexpected change
    • Help prioritize work tasks
    • Apply pressure on others
    • Are flexible in work procedures
    • Become involved in more than one task/project at a time
  • Working Successfully with Others
    • Personality styles are most often a blend of tendencies:
    ● Calm ● Careful ● Moderate Paced ● Thoughtful ● Active ● Fast Paced ● Assertive ● Bold
    • Questioning
    • Logic Focused
    • Challenging
    • Skeptical
    • Accepting
    • People Come First
    • Personable
    • Receptive
    Dominant Expressive Solid Analytical Source: www.corexcel.com TASK FOCUSED PEOPLE FOCUSED
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • Identify the personality tendency:
    • At an initial planning meeting of a critical project, you end up running the committee.
    • When leaving a message, you speak as if the person was on the other end of the phone (and have to call back several times to complete your message).
    • You submit a five-page report in response to a request for how many tickets you need for a company outing.
    • Your first reaction to a proposed change in office procedure is “why”?
    • You thrive on positive feedback.
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • When you’re on a roll, you can roll over others.
    • You’re always looking to change and “improve” things.
    • You avoid being around several co-workers who thrive on conflict.
    • When co-workers need a listening ear, they seek you out.
    • Punctuality is not your strongest trait.
  • Applying Your Understanding Which personality styles do these words describe? ___ People oriented ___ Bossy ___ Disorganized ___ Analytical ___ Loyal ___ Outgoing ___ Hard charging ___ People pleasing ___ Avoids conflict ___ Factual ___ Arrogant ___ Seems rigid ___ Task/accomplishment oriented ___ Perfectionism ___ Amiable ___ Problem solver ___ Fun ___ Loves detail, procedure ___ Enthusiastic ___ Dependable ___ Indecisive ___ Never met a stranger
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • Same situation, different perceptions:
    • Situation: Dan is waiting in a restaurant for his business associate, Ed, who has been helping another colleague involved in a conflict. Consequently, Ed is running late.
  • Applying Your Understanding How Perceptions Can Blindside Us
    • Dan’s perception:
    • Dan is fuming. The waitress is hovering, and the manager is staring. He thinks, “Ed is late again…might have expected it…typical…should have been twice as late as him…can’t, though; not my style. This is serious now… firm deadline to meet…I only have this time to work on it. Ed will have a good excuse…he always does.”
    • His response to Ed: “Hi. We’d better order right away. I don't have much time.”
  • Applying Your Understanding How Perceptions Can Blindside Us
    • Ed’s perception:
    • Ed spots Dan and waves. He makes his way to the table with a smile on his face. “Good, Dan hasn’t ordered yet…now if I can just catch the server…talking Pat down was an intense emotional experience…but a little extra time listening did wonders. I have a whole afternoon to spend on this project…not quite sure what the deadline is…but that can always be changed. Dan doesn’t look too happy…but after all, people are more important than being on time.”
    • His response to Dan: “Hi, Dan. Sorry to be a little late. I’m starved. Are you ready to order?”
  • Applying Your Understanding Dan and Ed: What’s Going On?
    • Let’s discuss as a group:
    • What do you see as the root problem of this interaction?
    • What was Dan’s motivation? Ed’s?
    • From their responses, identify the personality traits of each; what are some signs?
    • What could Dan and Ed have done to acknowledge or change their behavior?
    • Do you identify more with Dan or Ed?
  • Challenges in Today’s Workforce
    • Understanding generational differences
    • Comprehending (and appreciating) personality differences
    • Grasping core competencies
  • Core Competencies/Soft Skills
    • The majority of skills employers are seeking today are called “core competencies,” also known by the term “soft skills.” They include:
    • Communication
    • Understanding Diversity
    • Utilizing Technology
    • Problem Solving
    • Teamwork/Collaboration
    • Managing Conflict
    • Professionalism/Work Ethic
    • Creativity/Innovation
    • Lifelong Learning/Self Direction
    • Ethics/Social Responsibility
    • Serving Customers
    Your personality style, as well as the generation you are in, serve as filters ̶ “perspective setters” ̶ in your approach to these skills
  • Breaking Down the Soft Skills
    • Critical Thinking/Problem Solving
    • Know who to ask or where to go to solve workplace problems
    • Follow step-by-step written instructions
    • Diversity
    • Learn from and work with individuals from varying:
    • cultures
    • races
    • genders
    • religions
    • lifestyles
    • viewpoints
    • generations
    • Lifelong Learning/Self Direction
    • Continuously acquiring new knowledge and skills, as well as where and how to learn them
    • Learning from mistakes
    • Taking initiative in the workplace
  • Breaking Down the Soft Skills
    • Professionalism/Work Ethic
    • Accountability and effective work habits (punctuality, time/workload management, personal hygiene)
    • Health/safety practices and drug-free behavior in the workplace
    • Access to reliable transportation
    • Oral Communication
    • Interacting appropriately with supervisors and co-workers
    • Use of appropriate language for workplace
    • Articulate thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively
    • Written Communication
    • Read and process workplace information
    • Write basic notes, memos, letters and reports clearly and effectively
    • Creativity/Innovation
    • Ongoing improvement in the workplace
    • Communicate new ideas
    • Integrate knowledge among different departments
  • Breaking Down the Soft Skills
    • Ethics/Social Responsibility
    • Demonstrate integrity and social behavior
    • Act responsibly
    • Awareness of workplace policies and procedures, and their importance
    • Customer Service
    • Meet customer needs and expectations in a helpful and courteous way
    • Listen, suggest solutions and communicate ideas
    • Information Technology/Applications
    • Use Internet as a research tool
    • Ability to use technology (printer, copier, scanner, fax)
  • Breaking Down the Soft Skills
    • Teamwork/Collaboration
    • Build effective relationships with co-workers and customers
    • Work with diverse teams
    • Take responsibility for influencing and accomplishing group goals
    • Manage Conflict/Negotiation
    • Assess differing viewpoints by considering all sides of an issue
    • Exhibit respectful behavior during workplace conflicts
    • Demonstrate ability to compromise
  • Bringing it all Together
    • Work through these scenarios in groups. Consider the input of each person in the group.
    • Be aware of your perspective, based on your generation and personality traits. Note what factors are motivating you throughout the group discussion.
    • Also identify which employability skills you use as your group develops a plan of action.
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • Your boss accidentally forwards an e-mail to your team outlining plans for laying off one of your co-workers, someone who is respected for her work ethic and considered a friend by many.
    • You must come to a group consensus, so consider the following:
    • If one person tells the boss and others don’t, what are the possible ramifications?
    • What if no one says anything and the boss realizes the error herself?
    • Do you tell the co-worker but not the boss? If you do, what happens when the boss realizes your team knew the entire time? Also consider that your co-worker may be embarrassed that you received the news before she did.
    • If the co-worker finds out later that you knew and didn’t tell her, how will you maintain a relationship?
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • You’ve been placed on a committee with your co-workers to resolve the following issue:
    • Your co-worker writes something nasty about your boss on his facebook page. The boss Googles her own name and finds the entry. What action, if any, should be taken?
    • Consider the following:
    • The co-worker didn’t realize that his page wasn’t set on private
    • There are no rules regarding internet standards in the employee handbook
    • Should online information be held against individuals?
    • Could the on-line insults be considered libel/slander?
    • Would firing the employee be an infringement of his first amendment rights?
    • Should the committee meet face to face, or can the issue be resolved via electronic communication?
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • You are up for a promotion against a co-worker who has been with your employer 3 years longer than you have. However, the co-worker constantly asks you for help, and you find yourself doing the bulk of the work.
    • Consider:
    • Do you tell your boss that you do this person’s work before, during or after the interview…or at all? What form will the communication take?
    • If you don’t tell your boss and don’t get the promotion, would you be upset that she wasn’t informed?
    • What role does seniority play?
    • Do you participate in the gossip “grapevine” whether or not you get the promotion?
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • You’ve been given the opportunity to represent your company at a prestigious conference, which will include a number of pertinent Continuing Education sessions. Your supervisor has specifically selected you to represent the company at this premier event of your industry based on your performance and expertise. The conference begins on the Thursday of the week of your family vacation. You’re tempted to ask your co-worker to attend in your place. What do you do?
    • Consider:
    • You will be asked to submit a written report of the activities and educational sessions for your colleagues’ benefit
    • This experience would be a real “feather in your cap”
    • If your co-worker attends, he’ll make sure everyone knows he was asked to represent the company even though you’re the obvious choice
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • You’re a manager, and one of your most productive employees has begun flexing her time. While most employees have kept with the standard 8–5 schedule, she has been taking advantage of technology (email, text, IM, video conferencing) and been more productive than most employees – and her numbers prove it. Is this acceptable?
    • Consider the following:
    • What is most important – quality of work, time spent on-site, a combination of both?
    • Will this cause an increase or decrease in employee morale?
    • Who decides who gets flex-time and who does not? Based on what criteria?
    • Does it matter WHERE employees get their work done, or is it simply a matter of getting it done?
    • As a manager, what kind of schedule/flex time would you institute?
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • You work in a large call center. You hear a co-worker being consistently rude and abrupt with customers. Your supervisor is suspicious of this employee’s behavior and asks you to observe and report back to her.
    • Consider:
    • Is this a reasonable request? Why or why not?
    • The impact of this request will likely change how you interact with your co-worker. Should this be a factor in your decision? Do you speak to your supervisor about your concerns?
    • Do you make your co-worker aware of your supervisor’s request? Do you try coaching him on his behavior?
  • Applying Your Understanding
    • You’ve worked at the same company for almost two decades, as have most of your colleagues. A new female manager wants to implement what she thinks is an novel procedure integrating all departments; she anticipates the change will streamline production, cutting delivery time and costs for customers, and increasing profit for the company. The plan will require additional training and communicating among departments, something that’s “never been done.” Most of your co-workers are against the new process and they’ve asked you to communicate their opposition to the manager. You think the plan could work. What do you do?
    • Consider:
    • Some of the younger people in the company have been calling for a union vote for the past six months, even though the prevailing opinion is that now is not the time. Could this be the catalyst? Is this a factor in your decision?
    • A handful of your co-workers have made veiled threats toward you if you speak favorably about the new plan. Do you confront or ignore them? Is there another approach?
    • The manager has hinted that if you can sway your co-workers to her way of thinking, a promotion may be in store for you.
  • Challenges in Today’s Workforce
    • Understanding generational differences
    • Comprehending (and appreciating) personality differences
    • Grasping core competencies