Liam Illingworth | Unit 1

Assignment 1 | (P1, P2, P3, M1)

Personal Attributes Valued by Employers (Task 1 | P1)

Specific Skills

Employers look for certain attributes in a possible employee. RecruIT for example would probably look for a candidate that posses such skills as technical knowledge, this is a generic attribute that anyone who wants to work in IT must have, as this attribute is the baseline for any candidate that wants to work in IT. They must have this as IT relies mostly on technical knowledge, especially if some systems go down, or if maintenance needs to be done.


Health and Safety is also another needed attribute that employers will look for in their candidates, especially for RecruIT, as in an IT department, there are all sorts of hazards that could jeopardise the health and safety of any person within that work space. Knowledge on health and safety is needed as there is always going to be some sort of hazard, and the candidate needs to know how to spot one, how to work around it and fix it, take care of what they do that could cause hazards and how to avoid it (this is what risk assessments are for) and to be able to take care of their own health.


A good working attitude is another attribute that employers such as RecruIT will be looking out for, as in IT, if there is something that goes wrong in a work space and for instance, a server goes down, the employee would need to have a good working attitude to get that sorted as quick as possible, as someone who doesn't have a good working attitude, someone who doesn't care about what has gone wrong, could loose that company money, and with not being bothered about their work, they could do something wrong and not notice that they haven't, for example, put RAM sticks in properly or not made sure a SATA cable is in properly, this would then lead to system failures and this is why employers look for a good working attitude in their candidates.


Problem solving attributes are probably wanted by the employer to as, for a person working to work in IT, there could always be something that can go wrong, and because of this, RecruIT will want someone who will be able to solve problems quickly and efficiently so normal work can be done without any interruptions.

General attributes

General attributes like planning skills may be needed and wanted by RecruIT, this is for when they may need to plan for things such as maintenance of the systems that are in the work space, or maintenance on other devices that are also contained in the company. Although planning skills may not be needed as there are somethings such as Gantt charts that can assist in planning and doing maintenance of separate device. But planning skills still may be needed just so that maintenance schedules are kept on track and on the dot to when they're supposed to start and end.


Although organisational skills may not be mandatory for a job in IT, it would be a good attribute to posses and the employer, RecruIT may actually look for this. A person with organisational skills is likely to keep an eye on things going on in the work space, such as stocks of paper and the general tidiness of the work environment. RecruIT may look for this as they would want to have their offices clean and tidy without any wires lying about that could pose a danger to other staffs. They also wouldn't want to run out of any stocks as being an IT company, there could be a lot of paperwork that may need doing, and if a person with that attribute is present, then they just may never have the problem of running low on the most standard of supplies.


Time management attributes could seem like quite a mandatory skill to posses, and it would be in the correct context, for example, getting to work on time is a must and punctuality and overall attendance to work is mandatory unless otherwise for a legitimate reason. RecruIT would look for this attribute for that reason, they may also question their former employer to see how their attendance and punctuality actually was when they were working with them. For other reasons such as getting maintenance done on time may not be so necessary as when doing maintenance things can sometimes go wrong, but being able to do it as quick as they can would be helpful in time management skills.


Team working attribute would come in handy for RecruIT, as the candidate will probably be working with other IT technicians. This would be needed as they will need to be able to work just as well, if not better than they do when working on their own, also being able to communicate efficiently and getting work done as quickly and efficiently as possible.


Verbal skills will be needed, especially within an IT office communicating with other people, especially with customers on the phone that need assistance with their systems and remote applications aren't available. Having clear verbal skills will be looked for as employers, they need this as they know that IT technicians will be working with other people and their customers that pay them for their business.


Written skills are also quite mandatory attributes an employer will be looking for, since live chats may be needed with customers, and since they may not know a lot of the computer jargon that technicians will know, a person with written communication skills will be able to provide easy explanations of whatever it is the customer may be looking for. Written communication skills will also be a good attribute if a letter needs to be typed out, that needs to be formal and addressed well, a person with that attribute will be able to do that no problem.


Numeracy attributes are also something employers may be looking for, and numeracy will probably be quite important while working in an IT office. This will help a technician especially who works for RecruIT work out costs, and costs will be important for their company as the less they spend on items for maintenance, the better, they will be able to work out the cost of items that may be needed, and how much has been spent across 6 months or annually, they can then try and reduce the cost and see what they can do with profits.


Creativity attributes would be a good attribute to posses, especially working in IT for RecruIT, as coming up with new ideas on how to solve problems, or ways that could deal with customers quicker, could help the company earn more profit, or just be efficient in the long run. Employers may look for this attribute as having a candidate who does posses this skill could help the overall business of the company, it may also be good for team work.

Attitudes

Good attitudes are needed in an IT work space, especially for one such as RecruIT, attitudes that will be good for an IT works space will be ones such as being determined, independent, having integrity, tolerance, dependability, problem solving, confidence, leadership and motivation. These would all be needed as at one point or another, some of these attitudes may be needed in the IT work space. Determinism will be needed as if maintenance doesn't go as plan and the systems won't work, you will need to be determined to get it sorted, this can also apply to problem solving, as you will need to use your problem solving attitude to get it done. You will also need the confidence to do the job as if you're the only one that has agreed to do it, you will need the confidence and leadership to be able to do that job and fix whatever has gone wrong. Being independent on what you do will be needed within an IT work space, as you won't be able to ask someone else to do what you need to do, especially if you're the only one qualified to do that particular job. Having tolerance will be needed to, you will need to continue on what you are doing until you have sorted it out so the system is working again. Integrity is having the completeness of actions, so you will have to finish what you are doing before you move onto something else. Motivation will also be needed as you will need to be motivated in what you do, you will need to be motivated that you will be able to get it sorted so the system will run as normal.

Principles of Effective Communication (Task 2 | P2)

General Communication Skills

Cultural differences in communication skills, with different cultures, you may have to fully think about what you're saying as one or two things could possibly come out as quite offensive to that particular culture, and depending from where they may have originated from, words that may not mean anything to you, may mean something to them that could confuse them, same with slang terms, slang that you may use may not be understood by other cultural parties.


Adapting your voice is particularly a must for communication as when you say something, the tone of your voice always gives significant keys to how you are saying something, like saying something in a sarcastic tone, or saying something in a friendly tone will always have a different outcome on how a conversation will go. You may need to adapt your voice depending on the type of conversation you're having, like using sarcastic tone as forms of certain jokes would work, but using it a sarcastic tone in conversations where opinions are being shared could possibly upset a person if they feel strongly about what they're saying.


Terminology is something that will almost pop up in any conversations, especially people from one area who particularly use their known slang terms. Terminology can't always be used tho, especially if it's to do with something so technological like computers, some people do not know any electrical terms, so it's probably best to explain things just as they are or use a word that means the same thing but is more mainstream within today's English language. Not using terminology as much is also good for people from other cultures which I've already mentioned above.


Sometimes the use of technology can grab the attention of some of the public audience as some people do like to use technology to communicate with each other, the exceptions of the likes of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger help us do this.


Question and answering is also sometimes a good way of communicating, although sometimes the questions may need to be with an easy vocabulary range so everyone can answer the questions as some not so mainstream words may not comply with a persons current vocabulary.

Interpersonal Skills

Verbal exchanges is simply just a conversation and swapping words with each other to make that conversation. Some people can naturally just talk to people and have the confidence to go for job interviews and meet new people easily, especially new colleagues. But some people don't have the confidence so they may produce a stutter, in which they will pause a lot, and sometimes, if they have very severe stuttering, could stop them from being able to produce a conversation at all.


Sign language is something anyone can learn, it's especially easier if they can read, and then be able to learn the word that is associated with a particular sign. Not everyone knows sign language though, but it's available for anyone who wants, or in an unfortunate case, needs to learn sign language. Some may be able to pick it up easier than others, but there is some people who just might think there is no point in trying to learn it at all, or they have no time. Sign language can be especially helpful if you need to have a conversation with someone who may be hard of hearing. In this case, you would be able to have a full conversation with them just by making sign with your hands. Sometimes facial movements can also show the person how you feel while making sign.


Being able to lip read is something that some people may be able to learn, this is done by associating the way lips move with the word that has came out of a persons mouth, some people can do this easier than others, deaf people also regularly practice this so they can try and fathom out what a person is saying. This is particularly helpful if you're having a conversation in a loud place and you can't hear what the other person is saying, by reading their lips, you may be able to see what they're saying.


Body language can be a big part of communication skills as having the correct body language shows the other party possibly how you could be feeling when explaining something to them. Some people can naturally understand body language, but unfortunately there are some who can't read emotions and body language, it's particularly present in those that have conditions such as autism or aspergers. Reading body language however is the giveaway to how you feel and having the correct body language will help a person understand how you may feel.


The use of intonations can also help a person distinguish the attitude the person may be feeling, It's usually done through pitch of voice, and the different pitch of voice is the giveaway to letting a person know how you feel.


Positive and negative language, if used properly can help people understand how you feel, it will also help them distinguish the kind of mood you're in, but it sometimes can be taken the wrong way, especially if it's used out of context.


Active engagement for communication is just simply continuing to give the other person feedback on what they're saying and simply just replying to what they may have said. Keeping good active engagement helps the other person see what you might be trying to get to, if they can't properly understand what you might be trying to get at, keeping them engaged with the conversation will then get them to understand you.

Communicate in Writing

When writing words between people, it's hard to understand the feelings of a person just by what they have typed in a chat box. The use of emojis helps the reader understand what the other party is feeling. Just by simply using ':)' at the end of a sentence can indicate that you're simply feeling happy.


Letters can either be informal or formal, informal ones are there to be able to talk to your friend, you can also draw your own emoji by doing this or simply just state how you feel. Formal letters may be ones for your boss at work, or to apply for a job, using words such as "yours sincerely", will help the formality of the letter.


Writing through fax, or facsimile is usually to just get short information from one place to another quickly and efficiently, as long as it gets to the point, while still giving a lot of description in a short few words, faxing is good for writing communication.


Emails can be interpreted in the same way letters are, they can either be informal, such as to your friend or family that lives far away, or informal, such as emails that you would send to your boss at work of colleague about something work related that might be important, that also might need passing on to the rest of the office.


Spelling and grammar can also be interpreted in two different ways; formal or informal. You are more likely to use no spelling accuracy or grammar sending a text message to your friends or family, you would normally use something called text talk, which usually uses a lot of abbreviations and such. When writing something formal you need to make sure that everything is absolutely perfect, you must make sure that whatever it is you have written makes sense and that all punctuation and grammar is correct.


Relevance in writing communication is quite important, relevance usually helps the reader with the current context that the writer is trying to get across. Adding something that isn't relevant may make the reader lose track of what's being said and they may misinterpret the current context.


Proofreading will be absolutely necessary when making something that may possibly be published somewhere, so people can understand it, it will need to be proofread by someone that has had nothing to do with the actual creation of the written process.


Note taking can also be helpful when you need to create a possible diagram of something that could be presented in a meeting, it's also important that the notes you taken down will make sense when the full detail is put into them.

Barriers to Effective Communication (Task 3a, 3b | P3, M1)

Barriers

Background noise can be a barrier to effective communication as when there is a lot of noise, you may not be able to hear what the other person is saying, not only that, but when there are loud noises, you can sometimes find it hard to think to yourself and think about what you're going to say in response to what the other party may have said as you can't really hear them. A way to overcome this could be to simply move to a different place, sign language may not be the first choice but it could help you communicate effectively in some sense, lip reading could also work so you can try and see what the other person is saying if you can't hear them.


Distractions can be a barrier to effective communications as if something is going on where you are, that can distract you as you may want to know what could possibly be happening. A way to overcome this could be to again, simply move to a different place where you won't be distracted or you can't see what is happening.



Hearing loss or speech problems/impediment, this can be a big issue for effective communication as a person who is hard of hearing may not have heard one or two things you had said, and they may not want to ask you to repeat that as they may feel slightly silly about it or may be shy to ask, which is another barrier. A person with a speech problem or impediment may be hard to understand especially if they have trouble trying to from words or letters properly as they may be slightly tongue tied and may have a lisp, in which they can’t form a letter correctly and possibly deeming some words they are saying unrecognisable. There are many ways to overcome this problem although they may not suit everyone who does unfortunately suffer from these. Hearing aids is one, although people may not want to wear them, they do help a lot, even if it’s just for when you’re trying to have a conversation with a person, or, try and get yourself and other people to learn British English sign language. For speech issues, again, may not suit everyone but there are speech lessons available, or there are methods of translation or text-to-type.


The place you currently are could pose as a barrier to effective communication, this being things such as you may have had a bad experience in that particular place or you may just have a bad memory of that particular place that you don't really feel fit to visit yet. A way to overcome this can simply be don't visit that place and go somewhere else that's suitable for both parties.


Lack of concentration is also a barrier for effective communication, this is because if a person isn’t paying attention, has a lack of interest or there is something that distracts them, chances are they won’t remember or probably didn’t take much of what you said in, thus meaning that, while the one person that’s talking, the other won’t take any notice of that they’re saying and won’t be able to reply at all to what they were going on about. To try and overcome this, try and start conversations in a place where a lot may not be going on or try and get them to take more notice of you by possibly making what you’re trying to explain a little more exciting if you like.


The use of jargon can possibly be a barrier of effective communication, this is because a person may not understand the meaning of some words that a person is coming out with towards them. This may put them off as they wouldn't want to have a conversation with someone who has a too wide of a range of vocabulary, as they just won’t know what they are talking about. To overcome this, try and use less jargon and use simpler words that may be a lot more mainstream to use for the same meaning, or the other person could try expanding their vocabulary, which may be the harder option, but learning new words with the same meaning can come naturally and everyone learns off each other.


People with low self esteem or suffer from being shy will have trouble especially trying to communicate with new people that they may need to work with for instance. This is an exception of the barriers as a person who doesn’t have much confidence may stutter uncontrollably while they will be trying to greet and get to know their new work mates. Which is still pretty hard for anyone but some people have more confidence and self esteem than others which will make it a whole lot easier talking to new people and being able to have a proper conversation with them. There are many people who do suffer from low self esteem and are very shy, and there are a few simple ways to overcome it, although these may not suit everyone, but are definitely worth a try to give you a confidence boost. Taking drama lessons and getting involved with scripted activities with other people does help, although this option may not be everyone’s go to choice. Joining some type of club to meet more people who have the same interests and that you can talk about is also effective to increase self esteem, this then would help a person overcome this barrier.