The Learning Process
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Skill Development Environment

A Positive Environment provides the Optimum Opportunity for Learning New Skills
Start by analyzing "What are you good at doing?" "Does it provide joy and satisfaction or are you doing it to please someone else?"  To take advantage of your strengths, "Establish short and long term goals that you really want to accomplish! "

       Counselors associated with the Human Resource Departments at colleges and universities can provide assistance with planning the skill development phase of pursuing a career. This is great, but it doesn't help younger individuals make informed academic decisions or consider alternative talents that are related to careers involving joining the military, learning a trade (carpenter, plumber, etc.), professional sports or in some aspect of performing arts (dancer, singer, musician, etc.).

Are you a Leader or a Follower?
       Most employment and volunteer positions require effective workers who can be comfortable leading or flowing. Even some entry level positions may have situations in which you may be required to act as a team leader. Management positions will require you to act as a reliable and effective team leader, but you will also need to be a team player full filling the goals of the organization.

       Ask yourself the following questions:
Interpersonal Communication Skills
        The lack of interpersonal communication skills are a significant source not not being hired, being bypassed for promotions, and dissatisfaction with career choices.  Positive attributes to be cultivated include:
  • Speaking with respect when dealing with others,
  • Never participating in spreading gossip and innuendo,
  • Being a good listener and doesn't dominate conversations,
  • Ability to successfully resolve conflicts,
  • Being able to concisely express ideas and concepts in meetings.
  • A consensus builder.
Leadership Skills
         Are you a natural leader? Leadership skills are extremely important in being successful in any career. The following are qualities of a leader:
  • A source of inspiration to others,
  • Effective delegation,
  • Knowing when to be a follower,
  • Facilitating a Win-Win solution with interpersonal negotiation skills,
  • Utilize both logic and emotional rationale in persuasive messages,
  • Business acumen,
  • Trust and integrity,
  • Dependability - can be relied on
  • Accepts responsibility and never places blames others,
  • Support empowerment of all team members.
Create a Culture of Empowerment
        Articulate your vision of the qualities of a successful team. Is it inclusive and demonstrates how team members what they are empowered to accomplish and their accountability? The following leadership techniques list ideas concerned with sharing information, rewards, and power with team members. A result should be to unleash creativity and formulate an action plan that are consistent with the organizations goals:  
  • Establish goals, responsibilities, and performance expectations
  • Use abilities to inspire team members
  • Always be constructive, forthright - never devious
  • Praise and treat people well
  • Utilize Interpersonal negotiation skills to persuade and influence others
  • Be on tops of work flow and provide leadership when expectations are not met
  • Resolve conflicts
  • Conduct effective team meetings that do not waste valuable time
  • Expect reports to be summarized and supported by detailed handouts
  • Support sustainability initiatives
  • Establish a harassment policy and disciplinary tools to counsel employees to reduce legal exposure.
Leadership Potential of Different Personality Types
        An individual's personality does not determine behavior; however, it does influence the choices we make in our day-to-day activities. Knowledge of personality types enables you to know your strengths and weakness. The challenge is to maximize your strengths, and understand the strengths and limitations of those who are your collaborators.

The characteristics of good leadership are very similar being a good follower. There are people who may be good followers who do not make good leaders or even want to be leaders, but there are no good leaders who are not good followers.

        Individuals who are supporters or team members are followers. They come with a wide variety of personal characteristics. There are some characteristics or traits that make for being a better follower. Just as with leaders, motivation is the most important single factor. Which is most important  - your ego or getting the job done?

        Take the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) test and learn which characteristics are associated  with your personality type. Knowing your strength and weakness is key to being a successful leader. How does your personality affect:
  • leadership qualities,
  • results orientation,
  • creativity,
  • ability to establish effective collaboration,
        In the views of others a personality trait, described as a weaknesses, can become an serious obstacle  concerning your ability to be a leader. If your weaknesses typically manifests itself under specific circumstances, you may be able mitigate the problem with professional counseling.

Developing Personality Traits and Character Traits

Recommended Reading:

PDF HR-Related Skill Development: External Environment   Student Zone: Skill Development: External Environment Analysis. Chapter 4. Most organizations face external contexts that are complex, dynamic and increasingly global.

PDF  Tips for Assessing Cognitive Skills for Decision Making Tips for Assessing Cognitive Skills for Decision Making. (Source: MDS Manual). Intent: To record the individual's actual performance in making everyday decisions.

PDF  Functional Assessment of Cognitive Transit Skills  The test was developed based on a Functional Skills List developed by .... does psychological or educational assessments for persons with cognitive disabilities.

PDF Skills Development through Distance Education  The environment of teaching practical skills. Generally both equipment and people are required for the development and assessment of practical skills.

Chapter 5 - Characteristics of Good Followers The skills that make for good followers also make for good leaders.

What is cognitive vitality?  The continuously process large amounts of complex information.


The Process of Learning

Mental Training:

The following internet links have been gleaned from personal communications
combined with information from public institutions and athletic organizations/
associations that have a web presence with information concerning team and
individual sports programs:
All materials are copy protected. 
The limited use of the materials for education purposes is allowed providing
credit is given for the source of the materials.

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