Archive for November, 2009
A model that I use quite frequently in one-to-one guidance and group sessions is one that I cobbled together myself. I call it the Zones model (or Zones of Impact model).
The original spark for the idea came from the Cognitive Information Processing model. I was scared off by words such as ‘metacognitions’, but the idea of different domains of thinking appealed to me, as did the notion of using these domains to identify the type of help that would be most appropriate for particular clients. Further inspiration came from the knowing-why, knowing-how and knowing-whom of the Intelligent Career model and Blooms Taxonomy of Learning. I later came across the Transformational Learning model (sometimes called triple loop learning) which again looks at different levels of change that might take place with a client.
Out of these various sources of inspiration, I wanted to make a model that I would find easy to remember which would help me to locate and assess the type of help I was giving to clients. Thus was born the Zones of Impact model. The model attempts to classify different areas of client needs in four primary zones.
Knowing why, knowing how and knowing whom — these are the three pillars of an intelligent career according to Michael Arthur, Priscilla Claman and Robert DeFillippi [(1995) Intelligent enterprise, intelligent careers. Academy of Management Executive, 9(4) 7-19].
The notion of the intelligent career was developed in response to the shift that was taking place in the corporate world in the 1980s and 90s — delayering, downsizing, outsourcing, etc. As part of this transformation, James Brian Quinn proposed that modern intelligent organisations should focus on their core competencies in three arenas: firm culture, know-how and networks.
Arthur et al. suggested that individual career success in such organisations could be founded on three similar personal core competencies or forms of knowing.
- Knowing why — Understanding your motivation for working. Being clear on your values and being able to identify with your work.
- Knowing how — Being aware of the skills and knowledge you bring to your work. Developing abilities to meet the demands of changing roles.
- Knowing whom — Developing and maintaining the relationships that can have an impact on your career. Thinking about your image and reputation with others.
When you meet new people, do you tend to assume that they will like you or worry that they will reject you? Either way, you may be involved in a self-fulfilling prophecy.
If you anticipate acceptance or rejection, you are likely to get what you expected. People who expect a favourable reception are more likely to behave warmly to the people they meet. This warmth influences the other person’s initial impressions of them. Conversely, if you expect to be judged negatively, you are likely to behave more coldly leading to negative initial impressions. Those initial impressions are then likely to influence future perceptions and judgements through the halo effect or the affect heuristic.
This has obvious implications for recruitment interviews and for networking. We often talk about the importance of good first impressions in these settings.
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