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Effective career readiness for college students requires the acquisition of excellent skills in terms of academic knowledge, technical experience and a collection of set competencies, referred to as employability skills (US Department of Education 2016). Employability skills can be defined as work competencies, which can drive success across all levels of employment in the labor market.
The skills include the ability to assess personal responsibilities and evaluate your performance, ability to improve interpersonally, ability to understand the dynamics of work relationships, and the ability to develop effective strategies for solving work related problems. However, the question is about how one can acquire or develop effective employability skills. The objective of this paper is to discuss the most efficient strategies for developing employability skills.
1.1 How to determine own responsibility
As a Practice Educator in Gold View Hospital, my duties are planning objectives, and monitoring team performance. In addition, I am tasked with the role of coordinating various departments, organizing meetings, and providing an enabling environment for employees to work better. Generally, my duty is to enhance performance objective.
How to enhance performance objective
Performance objective can be enhanced by improving one’s capabilities such as communication skills, problem-solving skills, work and team management skills et cetera.
Effective Communication skills: As a practice educator, my strategy to effective communication involves good listening skills, use of verbal and non-verbal messages. In addition, I should be able to relate well with issues and know when to speak.
Problem solving techniques: The best approach of solving problems includes: problem definition, problem analysis, developing options for solving the problem, selecting the most suitable option, implementing the option, evaluating the outcome, and learning from the problem.
Decision making skills: Before making a decision, it is important to learn and develop your decision within the work requirements. This often calls for embracing intuition approach by applying experience and personal values. Furthermore, the process should encourage reasoning and comprehensiveness of ideas without attaching emotional aspects to decision.
Organizing work: The best approach to handling any given assignment is by writing down every detail needed as well as any related information that you think might be useful to you. Develop a time schedule to ensure that all tasks are prioritized and accomplished within the set timeframe. Consult your friends, tutor, or anyone who might provide important information regarding your assignment.
Embrace leadership skills: Observe good relationship with coreworkers and the institution at large. Make use of negotiation, influence, and persuasion techniques in the case of divergent views.
Team management skills: This is equally an important aspect of increasing performance objective. The skills include effective communication, establishing team virtues, effective decision-making approach, and developing suitable conflict resolution techniques.
Work Ethics: Virtues such as credibility, honesty, industriousness and respect for others are also important factors to developing performance objective.
However, the above-highlighted skills are to some extent too general to bring out an efficient objective performance. Therefore, they can be effective or not depending on a person’s nature and state of mind. However, the efficiency of this skills can be enhanced by addressing several factors considered to be obstacles to their effectiveness.
For instance, to promote aspects of effective communication skills, one should develop effective stress management skills (Robinson, Segal &Smith 2016). Stress and emotions can lead to misinterpretation of other people or project. According to Robinson, Segal &Smith (2016), to deal with stress while communicating one is required to:
- Take a moment of calm before you decide whether to continue the conversation or postpone it.
- Carry out stress managing activities such as taking some deep breaths, relaxing and clenching muscles, and recalling a sensory image, which is soothing and rich in your memory.
- Using humor in the conversation to ease tension and release emotions
- Be able to appreciate the concerns of others even though may not appear so big to you
On the other hand, problem-solving techniques can be made better by applying the psychological theory of problem-solving such as the Herzberg’s Motivation-Hygiene Theory (Cooper 2014). Team management, building, and work ethics can be enhanced by introducing motivation and morale boosting factors.
According to Herzberg’s Motivation-Hygiene Theory, it is believed a happy and motivated person is more productive as compared to an unsatisfied person. Some requirements such as incentives and rewards to recognize people’s efforts will motivate them to be more committed to their work.
1.2 How to monitor and evaluate performance objective
Mind Tools (2016) outlines that the best approach to monitoring and evaluating performance objective is by embracing the SMART technique, which is an acronym for:
Specific: This describes a project or work regarding what should be done, how it should be done, and the project outcomes in the most observable manner.
Measurable: It describes the objectives of the project in terms of quantitative and qualitative measures, frequency, project costs, and timeframes among others. This is to ensure that the project meets the expectations.
Acceptable/achievable: The aspect of ‘achieving’ involves ensuring that the team is in a position to carry out the assignment, and has the necessary experience and technical skills. In addition, it evaluates whether the objective can be attained within the given timeframes, opportunities, and resources.
Relevant: The techniques applied in carrying out the assignment should be relevant to the objectives and the implementation plan.
Time-bound: This determines the way of achieving the objectives within the set timeframe. It evaluates the progress of the project at specific time intervals. More often than not, timeframes are put in place to create a sense of urgency to help the team to complete the work on time.
Dubinsky, Jennings & Brans (2010) states that to improve the performance quality in work environment, the following recommendations should be implemented:
Adoption of performance appraisal techniques: Appraisal techniques such as 360-degree performance appraisal should be adopted to help keep employees on track towards their assignments. It involves the process of gathering feedback on individual performance from a variety of sources. It includes self-appraisal, management, appraisal, subordinate appraisal, and peer appraisal.
Self-appraisal enables employees to evaluate their performance, strengths and weaknesses, and achievements. Management appraisal involves the rating of employees’ performance by the senior management. Subordinate appraisal involves the evaluation of employees’ communication and motivating skills, their ability to deliver desirable results, and their leadership qualities.
Based on the issues outlined in the paper, it is evident that employability skills depend on determining an individual’s responsibility and ways of enhancing performance to meet the objectives. To this effect, performance objective must be monitored in line with the SMART model, motivational methods such profit sharing and bonus et cetera.
In terms of developing solutions to work-based issues in health care setting, it is necessary to define and identify the problem; establish the main causes of the problem; choose the appropriate alternative; implement the alternative; and assess the results. In the long run, communication can only be effective through the use of not only verbal and non-verbal techniques, but also through good listening, assertive, mindful and responsive skills.
Borrill. C, West, M & Dawson, J 1998. The Effectiveness of Health Care Teams in the National Health Service http://homepages.inf.ed.ac.uk/jeanc/DOH-final-report.pdf
Cooper, B. 2014, Psychological Theories To Help You Communicate Better With Anyone. Available from:https://blog.bufferapp.com/3-psychological-theories-communication-insigh, [24th May 2016].
Dubinsky, I. Jennings, K &. Brans, B. 2010. 360-Degree Physician Performance Assessments for quality improvement Healthcare Quarterly Vol.13 No.2 2010 71
Mind Tools 2016, Effective Scheduling Planning to Make the Best Use of Your Time. Available from: <https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newHTE_07.html>, [24th May 2016].
Messum, D., Wilkes, L. & Jackson, D.E., 2011. Employability skills: Essential requirements in health manager vacancy advertisements. Verified OK.
Mind Tools 2016, Golden Rules of Goal setting. Available from <https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newHTE_90.htm>, [24th May 2016].
Robinson, L., Segal, J., & Smith, M 2016, Effective Communication, Help Way Guide. Available from http://www.helpguide.org/articles/relationships/effective-communication.htm.>, [24th May 2016].
The U.S Department of Education 2016, College- and Career-Ready Standards. Available from <http://www.ed.gov/k-12reforms/standards>, [24th May 2016].
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