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MGMT5940 Career Management Skills

Lecture 3 - 6th August 2018

Last Week’s Assignment

The Strong Interest Inventory

- If there’s any Interest Inventory you should take in your career, you should take this!
- If you take the test a few times, years apart from taking each test, you will end up with the
same results. Why? Because interests are enduring and don’t change – in fact, they get
- Dr. Dave and the Strong Test Inventory
o Enterprising result (not entrepreneurial)
 Leading
 Persuading
 Public speaking
- The Strong Test is reliable and valid
- Why is it intriguing that people of similar occupations have similar interests? Because we can
use this at a benchmark!


Your innate capabilities (the upper limit of your potential abilities)

You can:

- Inherit them;
- Be born with them; or they can be a
- Combination of your genetics and your environment
- Have
o High Aptitudes
o Moderate Aptitudes
o Low Aptitudes

High Aptitudes

- What you’re naturally go at

- Q: What do others think you’re good at?
- Q: What subjects do you do well at?


- If the glass is your aptitude, the water to the glass are your abilities


- What we’re passionate about

- What we love or like to do
- Something you don’t have an interest in is what you hate
2-axis diagram – Abilities/Interests Matrix

(Plotting abilities and interests)

Low Interest, High High Interest, High

Ability Ability

Low Interest, Low High Interest, Low

Ability Ability


- High Interest, Low Ability

o Liked basketball but not good at it
- Low interest, low ability
o Don’t like math, not good at it
- Low Interest, High Ability
o Not interested in basketball, but tall and good at it
- High interest and high ability
o I like it and I’m good at it – the perfect condition

Aptitude Types

Low Aptitudes

- Short glasses

Moderate Aptitudes

- Moderate ability – fills the whole moderate aptitude glass

- Very Low ability – fills only small portion of moderate aptitude glass

High Aptitudes

- Tall glasses
o High ability – fills the glass
o Low ability – doesn’t fill the glass

Your Own glasses!

- Includes all your aptitudes, we’ve all got low, medium, and tall sized glasses
3Dimenstional matrix/abilities matrix



 There are three glasses

o Each filled to different levels with water (pink liquid)
 The liquid represents your ability
 The glasses represents your aptitude (potential – maximum ability)
 Glass:
o A = Low Interest, High Ability, High Aptitude
o B = Moderate Interest, Low Ability (but can improve ability), Moderate Aptitude
o C = High Interest, Low Ability, Low Aptitude

An embarrassment of riches

- Hundreds of aptitudes
o What helps you choose? Your Interests!
- Work as mastery – high interest, high aptitudes

Reading 1: Enabling Career Success As An Emergent Process

- Career success emerges and evolves – in line with the notion of a career as an evolving
sequences of work experiences over time.
- 4 questions for finding your career fit
o What can I do? Potential aptitudes and abilities
o What do I want? Interests

What do I want?

“The place where your deep gladness…and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

- Career anchor
o Thing most reluctant to give up or compromise
o What a role must provide in order for you to find it satisfying
o There are 8 career anchors

Reading 2: Career Success around the Globe

- 7 global dimensions
- Paper concluded that different things, have different meanings, across different people
across different cultures
Next Week:

- To do: Hollands Vocational Self-Assessment Exercise

- To do: The O*Net Interest profiler
- To read: Lecture Reading – Judge, Kammeyer-Mueller


Readings for Week 3 – Notes

Reading 1
“Enabling Career Success as an Emergent Process”
Peter A. Heslin, Daniel B. Turban

Career Definition

A Career is a person’s evolving sequence of work experiences over time. Although there are many
definitions of career success, most of them construe it as the culmination of a person’s objective
attainments (e.g. pay, promotions, and status) and feelings of personal satisfaction and
accomplishment with his or her career to date.

Cumulative Outcome: something to be optimised, such as that at the end of the day, whenever that
occurs, you will be pleased with what you have accomplished and with your overall career.
Questions that might stem from conceiving of your career success as cumulative outcome include:

- Am I content with my financial status?

- Have I been rewarded or promoted for my contributions?
- Am I satisfied with my work and my accomplishments?
- Have I achieved my overall career goals?

Shortcomings of viewing career success as a cumulative outcome:

- What you attain will be the fruit of not only how hard you work but also of factors largely
beyond control such as workplace politics, economics and policy changes
- When multi-millionaires are asked how much money would be enough to satisfy them they
often respond, “just a little more”. This illustrates tendency for people to rest their
aspirations to be just out of reach
- A sustained focus on high objective career goals can prove costly in terms of other important
life facets such as family and personal relationships, physical and spiritual health, and overall
happiness etc.

Career success can only be viewed as being more about the quality of the journey rather than the
destination; whether you are self-actualising rather than whether you have attained self-

Conceiving of career success as an emergent process is in line with the notion of a career as an
evolving sequences of work experience over time. Viewing careers as an emergent process may
bring to mind the following questions:
- Am I working in a role and organisational culture that feels right to me?
- Have I seriously considered what career success means to me?
- Am I developing myself and my work roles in ways that benefit all concerned?
- Do I have a good balance between work and other aspects of my life?

This addresses the overarching question; What would I do to have a more successful career if I
thought about it as an emergent process?

Am I working in a role and organisational culture that feels right for me?

- Working in a role that accords with your enthusiasms and natural abilities are exercised
provides foundation for useful and happy life
- Enables you to fully invest yourself in work and provides meaningful sense of contribution,
achievement, and joy along path to attaining financial and other career aspirations
- Three ingredients for making wise job choice
o Clear understanding of self, aptitudes, interests, ambitions, resources, limitations,
o Knowledge of requirements and conditions of success, advantages, disadvantages,
compensation, opportunities
o True reasoning on the relationships between these two groups of facts
- These 3 ^ broad considerations for seeking or crafting a work role that feels right for you
o 1. What can I do? What do I want? (my capabilities and preferences)
 What Can I do?
 What are you able to do, achieve, and contribute at work
 Educational attainments, experiences, strengths, knowledge, skills,
abilities, work-role accomplihsments
 Awareness can be developed through developmental activities such
as 360 degree feedback, coaching, workshops, psychometric
 What do I want?
 Developing self-insight – what are my life goals, what makes me feel
most alive? What truly gives me joy? What makes me angry? Etc.
o Ascertain your career anchor – one thing you would be
most reluctant to give up or compromise and thus what a
role must provide in order for you to find it satisfying?
o 2. What do they want? What will they provide? (job requirements and offerings)
 What do they want?
 Organisations wants individuals with capabilities and inclinations to
achieve goals
 They have needs and expectations in order for their career to
survive and thrive
 What will they provide me?
 Discovering your place under the sun – a role that is a good fit for
 Determining career options they’d provide in terms of Intrinsic
(L&D, stimulating projects, etc.) and extrinsic rewards (security,
flexibility, awards, etc.)
 This depends on answering What do I want?
 Career culture: shared norms, assumptions, artefacts that shape the
meaning of careers within an organisation. 2 Dimensions;
o Assimilation - career cultures value assimilation into shared
org identity through strong socialisation practices
o Differentiation - celebrates and enables career success
through unique contributions.
o Career Cultures:
 Apprenticeship Cultures: Assimilation and intrinsic
 Prestige Cultures: assimilation and extrinsic values
 Protean Cultures: Differentiation and intrinsic values
 Merit Cultures: differentiation and extrinsic values
- Career Anchors (as aforementioned)
o General Management Competencies
 Demonstrate competence as a general manager of others and climb to
higher levels in an organisation
o Technical Functional Competence
 Not give up opportunity to further develop and apply your skills in a
particular line of work
o Entrepreneurial Creativity
 Not give up opportunity to create your own enterprise or organisation
o Autonomy/independence
 Not give up opportunity to define own work and way of working
o Security/Stability
 Not give up opportunity to have employment certainty and long-term job
o Service/Dedication to a Cause
 Not give up opportunity to pursue work that you believe contributes
something of value to society
o Pure Challenge
 Not give up opportunity to work on solutions to seemingly difficult
problems, to win out over worthy opponents, or overcome obstacles
o Lifestyle
 Not give up opportunity to integrate and balance personal and family needs
while meeting the requirements of a work career
- Idiosyncratic Ideal (i-deal)
o What an employer can provide you with can be negotiable ^
o They typically involve mutually beneficial arrangements of the following 5
 Development opportunities
 Desires tasks or ways of working
 Flexible work schedule or location
 Reduced work hours
 Financial compensation
o They can be negotiated before joining organisation (ex-ante) or after doing so (ex-
Have I seriously Considered What Career Success Means to Me?

- High income does not equate to feeling successful in your career nor the opposite
- Career Shock: an economic development that alters your perceived career prospects.
- In contemplating what career success means to you and thus how you will allocate your
time, talents, and energy it can be useful to consider streams of research people considered
when evaluating success:
o Recognition
o Quality work
o Meaningful work
o Influence
o Authenticity
o Personal life
o Growth and development and
o Personal satisfaction with their career
- Revealed around the world people evaluated their careers in terms of their preferred
combination of:
o Financial security
o Financial achievement
o Learning and development
o Work-life balance
o Positive relationships
o Positive impact
o Entrepreneurship

Am I being duly recognised and rewarded for my work?

- Education, dispositions, (e.g. intelligence, personality), prior work experiences, and

achievements play a pivotal role in becoming aware of an being seriously considered for the
most sought after jobs and opportunities
- So do less legitimate and illegal considerations such as age, gender, sexual orientation etc
which can be demoralising and unfair
- There are range of suggestions to help women counter such dynamics and progress their
careers such as:
o Build network and seek mentors
o Identify, study, and emulate paths of other women who have blazed paths similar to
your career aspirations
o Seek and take on challenging assignments
o Negotiate with both your partner and employer the sharing of duties, child care, etc.
o Resolutely dismiss cultural and media messages that serve to limit what career
options are normal or desirable for women to pursue
Am I developing myself and my work roles in ways that benefit all concerned?

- You can take responsibility for your career by actively striving to discover your answer to the
four questions (aforementioned)
- When people are proactive, beyond attending formal training, they look for ways to improve
their job and the way things function in their workplace; going beyond call of duty by
initiating projects, joining other projects, managing change, managing boundaries between
workgroups or organisations.
- When people take on challenging, highly visible, and potentially risky assignments, they
develop competencies that are valued at higher levels of the organisation
- People are more likely to be proactive at work, when they experience 3 internal motivations
o Can do motivation (belief they can make change)
o Reason to motivation (internal reasons to be proactive)
o Energised to motivation (enthusiasm and energy to be proactive)
- A proactive initiative Is likely to be wise if it meets the three criteria of being
o Contextually sound – likely to make sense and have positive impact on business
o Other-focused – likely to be deemed helpful and/or considerate of others
o Personally-sound – in alignment with your values, strengths, interests, passions, and
career goals

Am I engaged in mutually supportive relationships at work whereby I am helped and help others?

- Most people have psychological need to feel connected to people they care for and who
care about them
- Traditional mentoring relationships have two prime functions
o Career support
 Mentor trying to help a protégé settle into and advance within an
organisation by providing sponsorship exposure and visibility, coaching,
protection, and challenging assignments
o Psychological support
 Involves mentor working to enhance a protégé’s sense of competence,
identity, and effectiveness in a work role by providing friendship,
counselling, role modelling, acceptance and confirmation
o Proteges and mentors can learn from each other
o Benefits of mentoring are increased vitality, creativity, identity, authenticity,
meaning as well as personal and professional growth

Am I future-proofing my career by preparing to deal with career shocks I might encounter?

- Unanticipated developments within both yourself (evolving career aspirations) and your
career context (being caught up in a downsizing) can radically alter the expected trajectory
of your career
- They may be expected or unexpected, positive or negative
- Resilience – ability to bounce back from shocks, by continuing to make progress toward
current career goals with resources and strategies already developed
- Adaptability involved reformulating your goals and or strategies to adapt to new work and
career realities
o Manage distracting emotions
o Nurture growth mindset
o Re-balance career goals
- Behaviour strategies recommended for increased resilience and adaptability focus on how
o Develop an effective relationship with your boss
o Undertake suitable training and development opportunities
o Seek job challenges and fit, and
o Develop an effective career network

Do I have a good balance between my work and the rest of my life?

- The issue of how people combine work and nonwork roles

o This effort focused on the fixed pie effect of time such that family and work seem
prone to interfere or conflict with each other.
o Experienced in one domain can enhance experiences in another
 Being a parent may help a person become a better team leader or number
o Moods can also spill over and disrupt family relationships – if work isn’t going well
- Various approached to manage boundaries between work and nonwork domains of your life
o Separators – attempt to keep work and nonwork activities distinct from each other
and limit the extent to which work interrupts nonwork activities and vice versa
o Integrators are comfortable blending work and nonwork roles and thus have a more
permeable boundary between both than separators
o Cyclers tend to alternate between separating integrating depending on the demands
from each domain at different points in time.
- Create an effective boundary management strategy by striving to negotiate an i-deal that
allows for reduced work hours or flexible work scheduling or locations


- Emergent process conceptualisation for career success is an alternative to focusing on career

success as an objective and subjective outcome.
- Career success may be more an emergent process than a cumulative outcome; that is, more
a function of what we do and experience along the way in our careers that what we have as
a result.
- Take a personal journey through asking which ideas, concepts, models, tools would be most
useful to fine-tune how you view and proceed with managing your career
- Secondly, discover ideas that you might use to wisely and gently enable the emergent career
success of your employees, colleagues, family, etc. You can do this in many ways;
o Appreciate their strengths and share your observations about what they do well etc.
o Offer encouragement, insight, help attain the bravery that can arise for both
protégés and mentors in a high-quality mentoring relationship
o Provide advocacy and sponsorship to help other gains access to opportunities
o Acting proactively to reform inequitable practices regarding how career
opportunities are allocated
- To help another, first focus on trying to understand what that person hopes to do or achieve
as well as what they think might help them attain their objectives
Reading 2.

“How Will You Measure Your Life?”

Clayton M. Christensen

- Teaching others how to think instead of what to think – reaching the correct decision on
your own
- Theoretical Lenses on yourself
o How can I be sure that I’ll be happy in my career?
o How can I be sure that my relationships with my spouse and family become and
enduring source of happiness?
o How can I be sure I’ll stay out of jail?
- Frederick Herzberg – asserts that the powerful motivator in our lives isn’t money; it’s the
opportunity to learn, grow in responsibilities, contribute to others, and be recognised for
- Management can be the most noblest of professions when practiced well

Create a Strategy for Your Life

- How can I ensure that my relationships prove to be an enduring source of happiness?

- Keep the purpose of your lives front and centre and decide how to spend your time, talents,
and energy
- Apply the knowledge of the purpose of your life every day
- For some, purpose can grow out of religious faith – others, to bring honesty and economic
prosperity to his country and to raise children who were committed to the cause. Without a
purpose, life can be hollow.

Allocate Your Resources

- Decisions about allocating your personal time, energy, and talent ultimately shape your life’s
- How much time to I devote to my pursuits?
- Allocation of choices can make your time turn out to be different from what you intended.
Sometimes, that’s good; opportunities that you never planned for, emerge. Mis-invested
resources, can result in a bad outcome.
- People who are driven to excel have this unconscious propensity to underinvest in their
families and overinvest in their careers – even though intimate and loving relationships with
their families are the most powerful and enduring source of happiness

Create a Culture

- Two Dimensions
o Extent to which members of the organisation agree on what they want from their
participation in the enterprise
o Extent to which they agree on what actions will produce the desired results
- When there is little agreement on both axes, you have to use “power tools” – threats,
coercion, punishments, to secure cooperation.
- Building a culture where people don’t even think about whether their way of doing things
yield success. They embrace priorities and follow procedures by instinct and assumption
rather than by explicit decision.
- Design this into family culture and to think about this early on.
Avoid the “Marginal Costs” Mistake

- How to live a life of integrity (stay out of jail)

- The Marginal Cost of doing something wrong “just this once” always seems alluringly low. It
sucks you in and you don’t ever look at where that path ultimately is headed and at the full
costs that the choice entails. Justification for infidelity and dishonesty in all their
manifestations lies in the marginal cost economics of “just this once”.
o Story of understanding the potential damage of “just this once” – made a vow to
never play basketball on Sundays
o Define what you stand for and draw the line in a safe place and stick to it.

Remember the Importance of Humility

- Humility – high levels of self-esteem; they knew who they were and felt good about who
they were.
- If your attitude is that only smarter people have something to teach you, your learning
opportunities will be very limited.
- Generally, you can be humble if you feel good about yourself – and you want to help those
around you feel really good about themselves too

Choose the right Yardstick

- Life assessed not by dollars but the individual people whose lives I’ve touched
- Worry about the individuals you’ve helped become better people

Reading 3.

“Career Success Across the Globe”

Wolfgang Mayrhofer, Jon P. Briscoe, Douglas T. Hall, et al.

- Evaluating career success in terms of recognition, quality work, meaningful work, influence,
authenticity, personal life, growth and development, and satisfaction.
- Literature mainly focuses on WEIRD – Western, educated, industrialised, rich, democratic
- Emic view – perspective and methodology whereby individuals from all major cultural
regions of the world express their views regarding their careers in their own words without
preformed categorisations
- Identified seven globally relevant meanings or dimensions of career success that people
consider when they evaluate their careers
o Financial security
o Financial achievement
o Learning and development
o Work-life balance
o Positive relationships
o positive impact
o Entrepreneurship
Material Concerns – security and achievement

- Financial security – reliable supply of the material necessities for survival

- Financial achievement – having enough money to provide a level of comfort, affluence,

Financial Security

- Inseparably linked with being able to provide the basic necessities for living
- Resonates strongly with the notion of being a successful breadwinner who can provide for
his/her family or broader networks (clan)
- For financial security to be considered career success, it needs to occur consistently for an
extended, non-interrupted period of time, if possible for the whole course of the career.
- As long as financial security is inadequate, it looms large in people’s overall sense of their
career success.
- When financial security is achieved, conception of career success evolves to make other
success meanings more prominent.

Financial Achievement

- Most commonly valued meanings of career success, regardless of country or context

- Characterised by 3 facets
o People experience financial achievement when they steadily make more money
o Achieve wealth
o And more instrumentally, receive high incentives and perks
- More salient for people working in industries that traditionally revolve around money such
as banking, finance

Learning and Development

- L&D is often an important meaning of career success

- L&D is frequently ongoing, sustainable, renewable form of career success
- It can be exercised by rarely ticked off
o Continuous informal learning – attained on the job as well as from change, failure,
and enriched life experience
o Formal learning – involves acquisition of professional skills via training and or formal
- People in collectivist countries expect more in house training and development due to their
intention to remain with a single organisation
- L&D more of a luxury – appreciated more by those whose basic economic needs are met

Work-Life Balance

- Work-life balance means different things – 3 aspects emerged

o Achieving a satisfying balance between work and family life
o Achieving balance between work and non-work activities
o Having time for non-work interests
- Career success therefore involves the interplay of work and life
- Younger individuals without family responsibilities place less emphasis on work-family
balance but more on having non-work interests
- In collectivist cultures, family represents the nucleus and work-family balance is particularly
salient aspect of career success
- Those living through significant political change or economic change have a greater
emphasis on financial achievement and security than younger counterparts

Positive Relationships

- Career success can be based on the quality of relationships with co-workers.

- Indicators of positive relationships include a “well-done” on a routine task, being deeply
invigorated from working with people whom you respect and admire.
- Positive relationships can vary. US reflects importance of relationships in and of themselves
instead of placing greater emphasis on the relationship outcome of recognition.