Adventures in PR Land

Different Skill Sets: Use Their Strengths – May 2011 Article

Posted on: May 23, 2011

Everyone has strengths that cannot be measured in a one-size-fits-all standard.  Some workers are great writers, others are excellent mathematicians, and a few have great customer relations skills. Companies can use the multiple intelligences theory and modify instructions for greater productivity.

Created by Howard Gardner, developmental psychologist and Harvard professor, the multiple intelligences theory suggests that people have several types of skills and using only the IQ test to measure intelligence is limiting. People use several combinations of “intelligences” to help them better absorb and process information.

Spatial people like to solve problems and interact with the world visually. Linguistic people love words and languages and excel at written and verbal tasks – blogs, social media, internet forums, newsletters, or emails are great communications tools for them. Logical people are great at logical and numeric tasks. Solving problems and investigating are their strong suits. An Interpersonal person can also be labeled a “people person”.  They understand others’ needs and emotions; this allows them to provide excellent customer service and be persuasive.

Author Marcia L. Conner, wrote a book detailing how people can use their innate abilities to learn better and faster.  She then gives examples of how learning styles can influence one’s career.

“…an energetic residential Realtor, loves her job most when she’s walking around houses, running her hands over the walls, or touching the upholstery of a couch. Although she learns a little from her clients when they set up their appointment on the phone, she knows she will understand them better when they walk around a home together.”

Although this is an educational theory, managers can use this information to design more engaging presentations, enrich workshops/ seminars, and develop their staff’s cognitive abilities. Moreover, if workers understand their own learning styles, they can modify how they execute plans and maximize results.

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Sabrina Roberts

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