Abilities to Competence: Are You Winning Other’s Confidence in You?

In the last post (Part-1) I started journey from knowledge, moved onto skills and showed you that how integrating those two well will result into abilities that differentiate you from others. Lets move to next milestone in this journey.


As I was ‘able’ to drive car, I still needed to exert several discretion like whether or not to overtake, whether or not to cross speed limits, whether or not to slow down to pedestrians, whether or not to run car at steady speed to maintain its systems, among several others even in control environment or simpler situations like mock-up circuit and relatively less crowded roads. As I became good I developed certain method or technique of my own. I tested my newly found methods in certain situations and that gave me confidence that I could probably handle unforeseen situations as well.

What I was developing was ‘attitude’. Remember attitude may mean several things including approach and behavior and so forth.Attitude in professional world means disposition which is represented by attributes like attitude, behavior, approach, methods, techniques and sometimes mind-set. See my graphics below for a professionally relevant list of attributes known as attitude (as seen in research).

Let me give you one example.

If you are a manager, you may have a great employee with great abilities but you are always unhappy with the way he does the things. Looks familiar?

Let’s take another example that you have two employees exactly equal in knowledge and skills (I refer this as abilities). In the crucial time at crucial customer when things are at stake who is the one you can send right away without hesitation? You got it right — The ONE WITH OUTSTANDING ATTITUDE.

If you are hiring someone, you probably will hire him for attitude with the confidence that you can train him for skills. That’s how important attitude is.

What it means to you?

  • Attitude is an important component which defines how you do something and how you do it differently.


Now let me give you another equation. This is something you will encounter more often in your work place.

Abilities + Attitude = Competence

In simpler terms, Competence means: you “can” do it!! You have “right disposition” to do it!! Given right opportunity you should be able to do it. However, you have not proved it yet in a real-life situation.

Let me elaborate it.

Dreyfus (1986) defines competence as a stage in the journey to Mastery. Competence stage is characterized by following: With experience learner begins to recognize more and more context-free and situational elements. At this point learner is able to organize the situation and then concentrate on important elements. He is able to assess the situation, set the goal and then choose a best course of action. He may or may not apply rules. He may or may not be successful but that constitute an important element of future expertise.

Imagine an incidence when your manager said to you last time that “I feel (I don’t know yet) that you can do it. You have demonstrated it similar situations (maybe not same). You have the competence to do it”. Read the next section to see how it is different from ‘performance’.

What it means to you?

As I explained above, acquiring competence in something may mean that you might be ready to go into real-life situation. Key cue here is “I feel” instead of “I know” which means referring to competence.

  • By mastering your skills you gained confidence as you do something several times.
  • By integrating knowledge and skills nicely, you differentiate yourself.
  • By displaying a winning correct attitude, you differentiate yourself. Attitude plays a very important role how your abilities get noticed as competence and make other believe in your abilities.
  • And with correct mixture of right abilities with right attitude, you demonstrate your competence. That’s how others build confidence in you that you “CAN DO”!

Stay tuned for next part of this post where I will shed some light on what is there beyond competence as you travel your journey to Mastery. This post will be published in 6 parts. Do come back or subscribe this to check for subsequent parts.


Follow the original post at: http://rkattri.wordpress.com/2014/01/28/part-ii-knowledge-to-competence-are-you-able-to-win-others-confidence-in-you/


Raman K. Attri is a Training Transformational Consultant, Learning Strategist and Researcher with rare experience in shortening time-to-proficiency of employees performing complex jobs at complex organizations. Strong believer in personal performance as the starting point of any world-class leadership, he developed a scientific model Personal Resonance© to achieve peal personal performance and self-leadership. Additionally he helps trainers, learning specialists, instructional designers and training professionals with articles on proven techniques to transition successfully into training and learning management role.

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