During start of the module the main skills I had already, was my organising skills as well as time management and having a balance when working in teams besides working on an individual basis. (See Appendix 7 and Appendix 8) However, I carried out a skill audit (See Appendix 5) to allow me the chance to see what my strengths and weaknesses are, I also had 5 other people carry out the Audit which enabled me the ability to see how others perceived me, as well as see which areas I lacked in and needed improvement in.
The skill audit indicate results, which I found hard to measure as I have different relationship with different members that participated in carrying out the audit. Although I do agree that I need to work on my confidence with presentation skills (speaking in front of a wide audience) as well as my numeric skills. (See Appendix 5) I also found that I need to show my capabilities more often instead of staying quiet as sometimes I was misjudged to not have the skill which I believe I do have.
Therefore I carried out a SWOT analysis (See Appendix 6) to outline my strengths and weaknesses as well as get a clearer direction on what opportunities and threats are in the nearer future for once I start looking for a suitable job. I also carried out the Belbin role Identifier (See Appendix 4) to see how others perceive me as well as identify what kind of characteristics I have. My profile showed that I like to get things done. I am organised and reliable and focused on getting tasks done.
I believe my characteristic were very accurate, as I do tend to have very good organisation skills and I do make valued contribution wherever there are clear goals ahead. However the Belbin role Identifier also showed that I lack leadership skills, which is very true, this has always been one of my main weaknesses at the start of the module, although my CP group did encourage me to speak up and take leadership time to time. Therefore I feel by forming that sort of alliance I have been quite successful and my confidence to some extent has improved, but yet still needs developing.
(See Appendix 9: Appraisal forms) Nonetheless, during this year of PACE I have learnt that it is vital to be acquainted with skills one has and also be attentive in relation to improvement or development. Therefore I reflected on the things I did and how I did them. I carried out my reflection through a Learning log to see how I felt about the module to start with, and how I improved overtime and what is yet pending to be improved. (See Appendix 3: Learning Log)At the start of the module I needed to improve on my communication skills (See appendix 9: Appraisal Forms).
At previous stages of forming group for consultancy project I found it difficult to speak up and deliver idea and opinions, as I was fairly shy and felt the need to observe others instead. However, D. A. Kolb (1984) developed a model for understanding how students effectively learn from experience which consists of fours stages feeling, watching, thinking and doing (Pg. 31). I feel this model was very useful and I have learnt a lot through experiencing team work for projects handed this year, as I was able to reflect on my behaviour before and after report writing and presentations.
I feel I have enhanced the ability to speak up confidently and put arguments across more effectively, as I had the pressure of being prepared for each meeting. (See Appendix 9: Appraisal Forms) I was able to bring ideas and opinion across backed with evidence, which proved successful, and I feel I will be confident in doing so in future activities as I now have the ability to learn from past errors, and I am more willing to be prepared and organised. Redman (1994) argues that “the aims of appraisals are to improve performance and to give the individual a chance to see how peers see them.
” However Parker and Stone (2003) argue that “appraisals can help individuals develop. ” During the appraisal period I feel that most members as they were not acquainted with one another were just extra friendly with marking and observing than needed, in which I was not able to measure whether my comments were biased or accurate. However I felt the need to be acknowledged for my participation and hard work which gave me the strength to build upon my skills, and through time as the appraisal period neared I saw my feedback increase and I was able to work on my skills a lot more effectively.
(See appendix 9: Appraisal forms) A Business psychologist Hardingham (1999) stated that “a decision may well be made by team members with the greatest stamina or loudest voice, but is unlikely to be bought into by everyone in the meeting; decisions are likely to be lobbied against, undermined and weakened from the meeting end. ” Therefore throughout the project I found myself engaging myself in number of ways, as we have to work around our daily routines and personal lives, we were unable to meet as frequently as needed as we had other priorities, I decided to keep interaction up to date with all members through email.
This worked out to be a lot more convenient for all as I feel I managed to get a lot of feedback across to other members as well as improve my communication skills. In which I had to manage my time effectively as well as having everything organised and prepared for all meetings. I also found that the motivation level for all members varied therefore I decided to place all relevant information via extreme so that whoever could not attend could access whatever was discussed in meetings as well what needs to be completed by our team in order to succeed. (Refer to Appendix 10: Forms of communication)