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DATE 9/10/2012

[for hard copy submission]

Liu jingyang

TUE Long zhaowen


NO OF WORDS __3830_________

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Interview Summaries
Mr. Liu, 47, Chinese, Enterpriser Born in 1965 in China, Mr. Liu is a director and manager of a medium-sized enterprise manufacturing house furniture and packing materials. He now leads a team that managing 3 factories in Changchun, Nanjing and Foshan. At the year Liu graduated from a light industry collage in Dalian, he was allocated in a government-owned textile mill in Changchun. At that time in China, the declination of light industry is accompanied with the reformation and opening policy in China. The textile mill operated so bad that it could hardly pay salary for Liu. After 2 years of working in textile mill, Liu quitted and started his own business by selling slippers on the streets of Changchun first. He was then reconciled to the situation and tried other business such as opening a barber shop and a restaurant. However those small businesses did not last for long. After several attempts on small businesses, Liu found an occupation in distributive trades, to sell tinned radiator. After tempered in society and accumulating wealth by selling radiator, Liu finally opened his own factory producing house furniture in 2002. Mr. Liu always organized employee trips, basketball matches, and festival celebrations in his company and factory. There are various difficulties in managing factory and the workers during Lius experience such as walking off the job and negotiating with local government. However Lius hard work and abundant life experiences allow his company grew from small enterprise in one city to a medium-sized enterprise around China in 10 years. Ms. Hu, 45, Chinese, housewife Ms. Hu has been a housewife for 16 years, since her resign in Nanchang No. 8 Plastic Factory, Jiangxi China. She worked in the factory as a supply chain manager, but eventually gave up her job, due to the lack of family members to take care of her son, and other family issues at that time. Ms. Hu showed great leadership characters in her primary school, where her mother worked in. Her experience as the monitor of her class from primary school to university built up her confidence and the capacity to lead. After graduation from Nanchang University in 1989, she started her career in Nanchang No. 8 Plastic Factory as an operational engineer. Her communication skills and leadership skills were soon discovered by the manager, and Ms. Hu was promoted to director of Personnel. During her 7 years in the factory, her occupations barely matched her major in university. In 1996, she resigned her occupation as a supply chain manager, due to the lack of family members to take care of her son and other family issues that she was not willing to share with us. Currently, she is still a housewife, and does not have the intention to resume work, although her son can take care of himself now. There were many times when Ms. Hu experienced frustrations, regarding her career transition. However, it was during the process of frustrations that she constantly adjusted her values, realized the meaningfulness of work, and established the balance between work satisfaction and happiness.

Dr. Tan, 59, Singaporean, Associate Professor Dr. Tan is an associate professor in the division of economics in Nanyang Technological University; he has been working in NTU for 20 years. His publications about monetary policies and economics can be seen usually in newspapers and magazines such as Singapore Economic Review. Dr. Tan showed great interest in engineering in his childhood. He achieved his bachelor of engineering from the University of Adelaide in Australia in 1972. Upon graduation, he took a job as a program engineer in an electronics company in Australia. Dr. Tan worked as an engineer for 10 years and then realized his interest and ability are in economics during his life. He was quite interested in exploring economic problems and solving abstract problems. At the same time the passion of being an engineer is fading away. After evaluating and understanding himself he then started to pursue a PHD in economics in the University of Sydney. Dr. Tan completed his economics PHD and work as an economics professor in University of New South Wales and Macquarie University in Australia in 1991. Few years later Dr. Tan moved back to Singapore with his family and got an occupation in Nanyang Technological University as a professor in the division of economics.

Short Essay One

Mr. Liu
Self-awareness Self-awareness distinguishes self from the environment and other individuals, and in the case of Mr. Liu, we looks into self-awareness in self-evaluation and comparing selfs current behavior and internal standard and value aspects. Mr. Liu started his career as a spinner in a textile mill upon his university graduation in China in the 1980s. The policy of reformation and opening led to Chinas modernization of industry, which results in the declination of textile industry. He felt that the work was boring, there were little salary, no prospect for the textile industry, and limited opportunities for a college graduate. The above situation can be considered as low self-esteem [1], and lack of chance for self-actualization, which can be explained by the growth needs concerns in Alderfers Modified Approach of motivation theory. [2] With this driving motivation, Mr. Liu evaluated and compared his behaviour of the time with his internal standard as a college graduate. [3] He was aware that he did not live up to his personal standard and value, which corresponds to the aspect of self-awareness we defined. Therefore, frustration aroused when he realized the motivation to achieve his internal standard was blocked by the poor prospect of the future of textile industry. [4] By applying self-evaluation, Mr. Liu described himself as extroverted, adventurous, and preferred to lead, rather than following others and doing conventional work. Hollands theory could explain the mismatch of his personality type and the compatible work environment. As a result, Mr. Liu chose the withdraw reaction to respond to his frustration. In order to fulfill his internal standard and value, he started his own business, which was driven by his intrinsic motivation, such as a sense of challenge and achievement. [4] Environment Environment consists of the correlation between individuals and natural and social environment. In the analysis of Mr. Lius interview, we define environment in technology, training opportunities and cultural consideration features. As described above, the declination of demand for labour work, due to automation of machines, in Chinas light industry led to low salary, the dim future of unskilled workers and low employment rate. This contributed a lot to his withdraw reaction, and further influence on his whole career. Therefore, technological development had affected his career development profoundly. However, Mr. Liu recalled the dilemma he faced after leaving the textile mill. He was lack of skills for various jobs, for instance, management skills, and specific engineering knowledge. Meanwhile, few companies offered pre-work training sessions to their employees.

Consequently, he had no choice but to start with small business, by selling slippers along the street, followed by opening a barber shop, restaurant, etc. If there were training opportunities offered, Mr. Liu doubted whether he would still be running his own business now. The significance of training opportunities can be inferred from his experience. Mr. Liu admitted that cultural consideration also played a part in his career development. The belief in Confucius was deeply rooted in Chinese, including Confucius famous saying While one's parents are alive, one should not travel to distant places. Although the prospects were better along coastal areas in China, due to the reformation and opening, Mr. Liu gave up the opportunity in those regions, and stayed in his hometown. This phenomenon can also be illustrated in Gottfredsons theory as individuals prefer jobs within zone of acceptable alternatives. [5]

Ms. Hu
Self-awareness During the interview, self-awareness that we discussed with Ms. Hu stayed within the boundary of self-evaluation. Ms. Hu attributed her success of her early career partly on her childhood, when she was the monitor of her class throughout her primary school. She described herself as confident, had the desire to lead and give instructions, and concerned the most with the tasks she had, yet occasionally had conflicts with fellow classmates. According to Ginzberg & Colleagues theory, Ms. Hus explanation for her early career development was valid. [6] During her fantasy stage, she progressively defined her interest in the transactional leadership roles, and developed the capacity and competency for handling problems in supply chain of Nanchang No. 8 Plastic Factory, Jiangxi China. Judging from Ms. Hus early experience, it is obvious that she had a clear self-evaluation, which helped her embark her career. After giving birth to her son, she admitted her value has changed significantly, transforming from a strong leader to a thoughtful mother in chief. Besides her change in cognitive attitude, her emotional attachment to her kid, which was described by Ginzberg & Colleagues as affective attitude, as well as the family pressure eventually gave rise to her decision of giving up her promising career, and started a new career as a housewife. In this process, her occupational choice could be described as a developmental process, in which she constantly practiced self-evaluation on her values, and coped with internal frustration and external pressures. Consequently, her change in affective and cognitive attitudes influenced significantly on her career path. Environment Ms. Hus career was influenced by three environmental conditions: family members, cultural consideration, and rate of return for various occupations. Family members influenced Ms. Hus both early occupation as a supply chain manager, and her career as a housewife. As recalled by Ms. Hu, she was initially given the chance of being the monitor of her class, due to the fact that her mother was a teacher in the primary school. She built her confidence, interest, capacity, and competency in mastering leadership role in school. These experiences helped her with her early stage of career as a supply chain

manager. The birth of Ms. Hus son changed her attitudes, and the lack of other family members who could take care of her son eventually resulted in her career transition to housewife. Cultural consideration also exerted pressure on Ms. Hus decision of her career transition. This can be illustrated by frustration theory. Factors influencing frustration includes the strength of motivation, which can be influenced by culture, social and critical incidents. In the case of Ms. Hu, the culture stereotype in China that men work outside, while women work inside the house demotivated her career as the supply chain manager. When Ms. Hus son grew up, Ms. Hu did consider the option of going back to work. However, as Ms. Hus family became richer, and the price for hiring a maid kept surging, the marginal benefit for Ms. Hu to give up her career as a housewife became less significant. At the same time, Ms. Hu realized after years of separation from the working environment, her skills were not updated, thus, her chance to pursue the leadership role became mere. Therefore, the rate of return for her to go back to work was far too low than her expectation. And eventually Ms. Hu decided to stay at her current career as a housewife.

Dr. Tan
Self-awareness Self-awareness is quite a general concept which can be simplified by differentiating oneself from the surrounding people and objects. In the case of Dr. Tan, we consider self-awareness as understanding of ones traits and personalities. Dr. Tan described that the 10-year engineering life in an electronics company is just owing to the imagination of working with various machines during his youthful age. Little Tan thought it would be fun to work as an engineer. Therefore after getting his bachelor of engineering, he did become an engineer. The simple idea and decision of Dr. Tan in his childhood can be explained by Ginzbergs Process Theory; [7] purely play is significant in ones initial stage in fantasy period. Ginzbergs Process Theory also implies that occupational choice is a developmental process rather than a single decision. Dr. Tan concluded that economic issues around his life tend to be more attractive rather than engineering and programming after years of self-understanding. He affirmed that exploring economic problems and solving abstract problems are what he is skilled and interested in; individual with these personalities is defined as an investigative thinker in Hollands Theory. [8] These self-introspection and evaluation eventually resulted in the quitting of his occupation as an engineer. After pursuing PHD for 5 years, he became a professor in NTU which is investigative thinker type that exactly matches his personality. The modification of Dr. Tans own career can be elucidated by Hollands Theory; one should choose a job of which the job type is similar to his personality type. Environment In the analysis of Dr. Tans interview, we define environment in family training, neighbourhood and community influences, and geographic environment.

As described above, Dr. Tan had a great passion to be an engineer when he was young because of his imagination of working with machines. Dr. Tan insisted that his mother play an important role in the development of his interests. He recalled that his first plaything he can remember, bought by mother is a set of building block. Dr. Tans mother taught him how to play building block and thus trained his engineering thinking ability. Dr. Tans satisfaction and success in his career of being a professor is remarkable in his life according to his own opinion. He said that discussing economic issues with other students and staff who has the same interest with him is not monotonous but enjoyable for him. Such phenomenon can be explained by Hollands Theory that individual who choose to work with others who have a personality type like him will feel comfortable and satisfied. Therefore Dr. Tans neighbourhood and the community he is working in have a critical effect on ones career development. As a Singaporean, Dr. Tans first occupation was in Australia where he obtained his bachelor of engineering. The coastal cities in Australia always suffered from typhoon due to the latitude and monsoon. Mr. Tan had experienced several typhoons in Australia. He was tired of the bad weather and missed Singapore. The geographic environment is also one of the reasons he came back to hometown. According to Ginzbergs Theory, the effect of reality through environmental pressure can influence ones occupational choice.

By reviewing the three interviewees careers, we reached the conclusion that self-awareness, which focused on self-evaluation of personalities, traits, values, and attitudes, played a significant role in ones career development. However, although environment influences ones career significantly, the specific environment factors vary from different individuals, as individuals have different values and attitudes and different constraints in their career developments.

Short Essay Two

Career goals Jingyang is currently a year two Electrical and Electronic Engineer undergraduate. Zhaowen is studying Mechanical Engineering in year two as well. Both hold the Minister of Education scholarship with six years bond of work in Singapore. After exchanging ideas about our career goals, we found out surprisingly that we share quite similar career goals that both of us seek chance to work in an influential company, where there are big stages for us to achieve self-actualizations, and to gain recognition. However, there is a minor difference in our career goals. Jingyang prefer the platform in Singapore, while Zhaowen is keen to develop his career in China. By the scholarship contract, both Jingyang and Zhaowen will have to start their careers in Singapore companies in the first six years of their careers.

Mr. Liu
Emotional intelligence in Mr. Lius career Mr. Liu regularly organized employee trips, basketball matches, and festival celebrations, since he fully understood the negative feelings of stress generated at work for employees. By doing so, he created the sense of belongings among employees, and harmonious atmosphere between superiors and subordinates, which gave rise to positive working attitudes among workers. Emotional intelligence can be employed to explain his ability of perceiving others emotions, and further applying the information to motivate employees. [9] Therefore, emotional intelligence helped him guide employees working attitudes, and performance. His ability to manage emotion was exhibited when there were a lot of sophisticated documents needed to be signed on establishing his factory, provided the situation that the relevant departments always delayed in passing his documents. These processes could not have been accomplished without a good control and management of his own emotions. Thus, to reach career success, emotional intelligence in terms of effective awareness, control and management of ones own emotions, and those of others are required, as can be seen in the case of Mr. Liu. Application of Mr. Lius experience on our careers In achieving our career goals, which are self-actualization in big platforms and gaining recognition, we are expected to supervise on our subordinates, and earn the support from not only our mangers, but also our subordinates in the future. To be prepared for this experience, not only it the 5 years after graduation, but throughout our whole careers, we need to learn from Mr. Liu by paying attention to our colleagues emotions, and be ready to comfort and motivate them when they encounter negative emotions. According to Goleman, recognizing

and understanding others emotions and the ability to manage relationships are two important domains in ones emotion intelligence. [10] In our first 5 years in our companies, the unfair treats by our managers and colleagues are unavoidable, and might be regular, due to the fact that we are inexperienced, and hold relatively low positions in the companies. To reduce the unnecessary conflicts with our managers and colleagues, it is essential for us to control emotions without letting them affect our behaviours in a negative way, as seen in the case of Mr. Liu, who can be categorized under the individual of high self-esteem. [11] In order to build our high self-esteem characteristics, we need to recognize and accept our limitations, keep our promises, and be open to guidance and advice from others. [12]

Ms. Hu
Emotional intelligence in Ms. Hus career As the monitor of her class throughout her primary school to university, Ms. Hu constantly motivated herself whenever she encountered problems with fellow classmates. She recalled at the beginning of her role of class monitor, many classmates expressed their unsatisfactory about the way she managed the class, as she was the type of person who preferred finishing things in a vigorous and resolute way. Noticing these feedbacks, she was patient, observant, reflective, and willing to analyze and identify the skills she was lacked in. It was during the process that she learnt how to manage her own emotions, especially her anger towards those who procrastinated, how to recognize and understand other peoples emotions, and manage relationships with her fellow classmates. Thus, her pre-work training on the five domains of emotional intelligence (Goleman) did help her a lot when she started her career. Ms. Hus response to events and frustrations showed the importance of emotional intelligence on career development. Ms. Hu was effectively aware of her change in her values, her goals after she gave birth to her son. As a result, when there was a lack of family members who could take care of her son, she could quickly make the decision to withdraw from her job, and started her career as a housewife. Surely, there was time when she was bored managing the household at the start of her new career. Her ability to adapt to changes and the ability to be optimistic helped her retain in her current career. And she did not regret her choice. Application of Ms. Hus experience on our careers From Ms. Hus experience, we derived that self-concept and self-esteem influence greatly on ones succeeding at work and personal life, especially when there are big event happening to us that changes our values and attitudes. During our first 5 years of our careers, we must be able to recognize our beliefs and perceptions about ourselves out of the unconscious feelings, and evaluate them regularly, by asking the question is my career goal really what I want? By establishing a clear self-concept, we could reduce potential frustrations that we might need to go through in the five years. [13] In the case of the two authors, Zhaowen may go through more frustrations, compared with Jingyang, as one of his career goals is to develop his career in China, rather than Singapore. There may bring about more significant events experienced by Zhaowen. Therefore, lessons should be learnt from Ms. Hu, for every decision we make, we must first make sure the decision and consequences caused are in line with our values, attitudes, and career goals.

Besides, we should try to build up the characteristic of high self-esteem. By doing so, we would be more future-oriented, which is necessary at the beginning of our careers; we could control our emotions without letting them affect our behaviors, and take things less personally. Most people who have just started their careers tend to be proud, and feel hard to control their emotions sometimes. Therefore, high self-esteem is also one of the key factors that could affect our career paths.

Dr. Tan
Emotional intelligence in Dr. Tans career The change in subject should be quite difficult especially for Dr. Tan who has been working as an electronic engineering for 10 years. The engineering method of thinking has deeply ingrained in his mind. However he did obtained the PHD of economics after 5 years of learning. Dr. Tan affirmed the importance of his interest in economy, while what he highlighted is that he always have strong confidence in learning things and can motivate himself by reading books like <The Old Man and the Sea> and biographies of famous people. Thus Dr. Tans accomplishment in his career can be explained by Golemans Theory, motivating oneself is significant that it is one of the 5 domains of emotional intelligence. According to that theory, being optimistic despite obstacles, ones mental attitude will energize him to work steadily towards goals despite setbacks. Therefore self-motivating is required to reach ones career goal. Application of Dr. Tans experience on our careers In achieving our career goals, which are self-actualization in big platforms and gaining recognition, we will encounter several of obstacles inescapably. We need to control our emotions and motivate ourselves by apply specific ways when facing the difficulties in company. By learning from Dr. Tan, according to the characteristic of emotional intelligence, we may apply self-motivation which can gather up our feelings and direct ourselves towards a goal, despite self-doubt, inertia and impulsiveness. The significance of self-motivation can be elaborated by self-efficacy, which is defined as the belief in ones capacity to perform a specific task or reach a specific goal (Bandura, 1997). To develop our self-efficacy, we may also build immediate goals that provide opportunities for satisfaction and increased feeling of self-efficacy, while maintaining interest in the task. For instance, a small project which will take us a week could be an immediate goal, finishing the project may increase our confidence and move on to the next task. [14] The well finished project can be considered as mastery experiences, which will strengthen beliefs in our capabilities, according to developing self-efficacy.

[1] Lecture 11 Succeeding at Work lecture notes page 19, Kamal Kant, 2012 [2] Lecture 5 Driving Motivation lecture notes page 22, Kamal Kant, 2012 [3] A Collective Self-Esteem Scale: Self-Evaluation of One's Social Identity, Riia Luhtanen and Jennifer Crocker, 1992 [4] Lecture 5 Driving Motivation addendum to chapter 4 Frustration, Kamal Kant, 2012 [5] Lecture 5 Driving Motivation lecture notes page 10, Kamal Kant, 2012 [6] Work and Careers in the 21st Century page 53, Kamal Kant, 2011 [7] Work and Careers in the 21st Century page 45, Kamal Kant, 2011 [8] Stages of Career Development, Ginzberg, Ginsburg, Axelrad & Hermas 1951 [9] Work and Careers in the 21st Century page 50, Kamal Kant, 2011 [10] Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than Why It Can Matter More Than IQ, Daniel Goleman, 1995 [11] Lecture 9 Understanding Intelligence lecture notes page 32, Kamal Kant, 2012 [12] Self-Efficacy and Self-esteem: A Comparative Study of Employed and Unemployed Married Women in Iran, Irandokht Asadi Sadeghi Azar and Promila Vasudeva, 2006 [13] The frustration-aggression hypothesis, Miller, N. E.,1941 [14] Lecture 11 Succeeding at Work lecture notes page 20, Kamal Kant, 2012