The present case study describes a situation that resulted primarily from the lack of individual skills that are considered essential for success in the workplace. The case also outlines the adverse effect that the absence of these skills can have on a person’s work, for instance, missing the project deadline due to self-organisation failures. Essential Employability skills are defined by the SQA as “a set of achievements, understandings and personal attributes that make individuals more likely to gain employment and be successful in their chosen occupation” (2). Analyzing the case can provide a deeper understanding of the skills that are involved in the situation, thus providing an opportunity to find solutions.
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First, the case states that I was going to come to work early to finish the project that was due today. This indicates a lack of proper time-management skills in place, which are among the essential employability skills outlined by the SQA. Excellent time-management skills can help to organize the project work efficiently so as not to leave it to the deadline. Second, the failure to locate the phone number of the mechanic shows the lack of information management skill. This skill involves the ability to “locate, select, organize, and document information using appropriate technology and information systems” (OMAESD par. 5). The development of information management skill would ensure that the crucial information is stored in a way that allows for it to be reached easily. Finally, the case also portrays difficulties with communication and teamwork, which are also crucial components of the employability portfolio (Employment Ontario 3). In this scenario, high teamwork skill would provide an opportunity to delegate some of the tasks to colleagues in order to complete the project by the deadline.
Thus, three main problems can be identified in the present case: an unfinished project, the inability to locate the mechanic’s phone number, and no opportunity to ask for colleagues’ help in finishing the project. To prevent these issues from occurring, it would be essential to develop organization skills. For instance, making sure that the project is completed before the deadline so that the final day would be devoted to either finalizing or double-checking it would eliminate the rush to work and allow me to deal with the issue in a calm manner, rather than panicking because of the amount of work left to do. Moreover, my ability to organize information efficiently would mean that important phone numbers are stored directly on my phone so that they can be found straight away. In this case, being able to locate the mechanic’s phone number quickly would help me to get to work earlier. Finally, using workplace connections, I could ask other workers to assist me with finishing the project while I am struggling with my car.
However, if the preventative measures have not been taken, good critical thinking and problem-solving skills would prevent the situation from affecting my work in a negative way. These are also one of the essential employability skills (OMAESD par. 4), as they can help to find innovative solutions to various situations. For example, I could have called a taxi to get to work on time or access the project from my home computer to work on it while I am waiting for the mechanic.
Overall, as outlined by CSR Europe, there is a certain set of skills that can have a positive impact on employee’s ability to get employment and to be successful in the workplace (0:30-0:40). The lack of these skills, on the other hand, poses a threat to the employee’s performance and can affect the entire company. The present case effectively shows how these skills can influence the outcome of an ordinary situation, either by preventing its occurrence or by mediating its effect on the person’s work.
“CSR Europe: Skills for Employability”. Youtube, uploaded by CSR Europe, 2009. Web.
“Essential Employability Skills”. Ontario Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (OMAESD), 2017, Web.
Introducing Essential Skills: Adding Value to Qualifications. SQA, n.d., Web.
Workplace Essential Skills Manual for Employers. Employment Ontario, n.d., Web.