Ambiverts, Extraverts, and Sales Job Performance

 

In this article we look at Ambiverts, Extraverts, and Sales Job Performance and announce the new Accounts Payable and Receivable Test

 

Sales Aptitude Personality Research

Article Highlights

Extraversion vs Introversion is one of the most studied personality dimensions. It was a long-held belief that extraversion would “take a person further” in business, particularly in sales. The most recent research supports a third personality type that is in a way, a combination of qualities of both introverts and extraverts. These personalities stand to make the biggest impact in leadership and in sales. The implications suggest that: 

• Organisations should screen candidates around the “right disposition” and sales aptitude rather than relying on training people to cope with the pressures and emotional aspects of being in sales.

• Organisations should consider re-thinking their personality style benchmarks for hiring sales staff and other roles where high levels of extraversion might seem like a key criteria.

• The research continues to show that regardless of “personality type,” the qualities of self confidence, commitment, etc. are always going to impact the balance of this scale.

 

Sales Aptitude Personality Model

Sales Aptitude Personality Model

 

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Microsoft Word Matters – Most Popular Corporate Software

MS Word “After Web browsers Word is the most-used app on the planet; it’s still the platinum standard in word processing. Nothing else even comes close”(PCMag, March 2013).

Microsoft Word is a word processing program developed by Microsoft.”  It’s been in existence since 1983, and since that time has undergone 14 revisions, the most recent being Word 2013. It is the most widely used word processing program, with Word files being used as the “go-to” format for sharing documents (e.g. by email) because almost every computer user can access a Word document by using MS Word, a viewer or word processor that imports the Word format.

Its basic features include utilities for manipulating and editing text, as well as a spell checker, thesaurus, and dictionary. It appears as a deceptively simple program, but it has a high degree of functionality.
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Recruiting older workers

Making the right decisions for your business

An important consideration when recruiting older workers is to consider what their strengths and weaknesses are likely to be in terms of their cognitive abilities (thinking abilities or intelligence). By using the right mix of psychometric tests you can easily and quickly identify what type of work older workers are best suited for, and in what aspects of work more training may be required.

This may also help guide organisational restructure and employee development programs.

There has been much research about the effect of ageing on cognition. Read on to find out more about some of the key outcomes of their research..

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Speed, working memory and ageing

Numerous authors have examined the relationship between speed of processing, working memory and age, and debated the role of these concepts in understanding individual differences in cognitive ability. There are arguments as to the relative contributions of both concepts, and most theorists tend to agree that slowing is the explanation for cognitive decline.

Using tasks that draw on working memory (holding placekeepers in mind) and fluid intelligence (task complexity incrementally increasing), it has been found that both speed and working memory are important for our understanding of individual differences. It is unlikely that speed of processing can completely explain the decline in fluid intelligence with age.
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Tips when hiring a casual workforce

Over 2 million Australians, or 1 in 4 workers, are classified as casual workers.  A spokesperson from the ACTU described the trend in the increase in casual workers, or ‘casualisation’ of the workforce as “one of the dominant trends in the Australian workplace during the past decade”.

Much has been written about the casualisation of the workforce and there are many opinions on the benefits and costs. Casual employment can facilitate flexibility in the organsiation and help achieve a better work-to-lifestyle balance for employees. It can be particularly attractive to those who have other commitments, be it study or family, and who cannot or prefer not to commit to full time work. However, there are some hurdles that organisations should be aware of in relation to hiring a casual workforce.

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Job performance in the global economy: how the meaning of job performance varies cross-culturally

In the Australian work context, together with other similar individualistic Western countries (such as the USA and UK), job performance is typically assessed in terms of task (in-role) behaviour – i.e., how well an employee performs their duties;  organisational citizenship behaviour – i.e., going ‘above and beyond’ role requirements such as helping other employees with their workload; and counterproductive work behaviours – i.e., absenteeism and poor work practices.

In this global economy it is important to be aware of how job performance is assessed in other cultures, particularly more collectivist culture such as many Asian and Latin American countries.

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Research shows: cognitive tests strongly predict job performance

 A meta-analysis conducted in the United Kingdom (Bertua, Anderson & Salgado, 2005) has found that intelligence tests and tests of  specific cognitive abilities are strong, reliable and valid predictors of both job performance  and response to training.  Operational validities are in the range of .5-.6, meaning that these  cognitive tests can account for approximately 30% of the variance in job performance between  candidates.  This makes cognitive ability tests the single strongest predictor of job performance, over and above other popular measures such as personality assessments and job interviews. The predictive validity of cognitive ability tests generalises across job types and  settings, meaning that these tests are useful predictors of most jobs in most industries (if not all!).  Their ability to predict job performance is strongest for more complex roles, such as professional and managerial roles.

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Surveys could be key to cutting staff turnover

Recent research has found that up to 80% of staff turnover can be better controlled by organisations by improving their understanding of employee needs, employee-organisational fit and workplace culture.  The research, which included over 11,000 employees from 40 Australian organisations, was based on exit survey responses from employees who left their organisations between January 2011 and April 2012.  It found that the main reason that employees cited for leaving the organisation was an unfulfilling job role.

It also found that one of the keys to trying to reduce staff turnover and retain top talent is to be aware of what is going on in the organisation: whether employees are well suited to their roles, and engaged in their jobs.

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Attention: employers of skilled migrants

Australia’s immigration policy had long focused largely on accepting highly-skilled migrants. Seeking workers with outstanding skills and qualifications that are lacking in Australia aims to address specific skill shortages and enhances the size and skill level of the Australian labour force.

In the 2012-13 period Australia accepted approximately 190,000 migrants. 68 percent of these, or almost 130,000 were skilled migrants.

The National Centre for Vocational Education Research has found that skilled migrants, particularly those for whom English is a second language, often have different training needs to Australian workers.

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Baby boomers are booming at work!

One of the most important issues in the current labour market is the ageing of Australia’s workforce. There are not enough Generation X’s and Yers to replace the retiring baby boomers (BBs). However, this is not necessarily cause for concern as over the last decade we have seen a big increase in the number of BBs working past traditional retirement age (60-65 years).

In 2000 approximately 47% of men and 21% of women worked past the age of 60. In 2010 the figure for men had increased by 15% to 62% and the figure for women had more than doubled to 43%.

While this was partly due to the fall out from the Global Financial Crisis and the impact on superannuation, it is a positive step for organisations as it provides an opportunity both to benefit from the wealth of knowledge that more experienced workers possess and to capitalise on the changing workforce to introduce more flexibility in terms of part-time and casual work, mentoring, opportunities to combine work and further study and working from home arrangements.

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Changing face of the workplace

A large survey of Australian businesses conducted by the National Institute of Labour Studies at Flinders University and the National Centre for Vocational Education Research reveals some interesting findings about the significant ways in which employment patterns have changed in the last 20 years.

They found that since 1992:

-There has been a significant shift away from full-time, permanent jobs, particularly for men

  • Only 20% of all new jobs were for men employed full-time on a permanent basis
  • Growth in permanent jobs had been concentrated among individuals aged 45-59
  • Labour hire has been growing rapidly and now comprises over 3% of all employment

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Importance of ‘soft skills’ in the workplace

As seen recently in a leading Australian Human Resources magazine, the importance of ‘soft skills’, including creativity, flexibility, diplomacy and original thought in the modern workplace is gaining momentum.  In an increasingly complex business environment these skills can help organisation’s develop new and better solutions to problems, as traditional ways of interacting with clients, colleagues and the public are becoming less relevant.

So what are soft skills and how do they differ from the more recognisable ‘hard skills’? The easiest way to explain is by way of an example:

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How engaged are your employees?

 Employee engagement (EE) refers to the extent to which your employees believe in the values and mission of the organisation, are committed to their work and will act in ways that further the organisation’s interests.  It integrates the well known constructs of job satisfaction and organisational commitment.

It can also be thought of as an emotional or intellectual “attachment” (positive or negative) to their role and the company.

Engaged employees = intellectually focused and/or emotionally connected at work, actively supportive of organisational goals and willing to put more effort into their jobs (Khan, 1990).

Disengaged employees= distant and withdrawn emotionally or intellectually and perform their roles incompletely, without effort or automatically (Khan, 1990).

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Safety matters, just ask Orica!

Incidents such as the leak of the cancer-causing chemical hexavalent chromium by Orica in Newcastle in August last year highlight the importance of safety procedures and proper handling of health and safety incidents by organisations.

Following the leak the plant was closed for 6 months, it reportedly lost $90 million in earnings, it faced court over breaching Environmental Protection laws and the incident was the subject of a NSW Health health and safety risk assessment and two government inquiries.

The incident also forced changes in environmental protection laws, which now require companies to notify authorities immediately after an incident that poses a risk to the environment, with fines of up to $2 million for failing to do so.

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Assessment in Organisations – Current Status, Trends and Emerging Issues

Meta-analyses have revealed that the most valid predictors of job performance are ability measures (cognitive or intelligence tests) and personality assessments, particularly the “Big 5” personality traits, followed by structured job interviews.  Together, ability tests and measures of conscientiousness or integrity provide an adjusted validity of 0.65 (Ones, Viswesveran, & Schmidt, 1993; Ones & Viswesveran, 1998).  The combination of these measures also helps to reduce the impact of issues such as cultural differences in performance on ability tests and measurement error (Bartram, 2004).

In terms of ‘post-hire’ testing, research has shown that 360 degree feedback systems are one of the most popular and fast-growing types of assessments used in organisations.  These systems have evolved as globalisation and the increased pace of change in organisations have resulted in a need for flexible measures of organisational performance that assess a range of competencies rather than specific job skills (Bartram, 2004).

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Psychometric Aptitude Tests vs Referee Checks

Most jobs require applicants to provide references or referees in the form of former employers who can be called to ask about how the applicant performed in previous roles.  Whilst referee checks are very common, there is evidence to show that they do not predict job performance very well and can in fact be highly misleading.

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The Multi-Tasks Test as a Predictor of Management Performance

Managers are arguably the most important members of an organisation.  Managers act as the liaison point between the workers and the strategy makers.  They lead and direct staff, implement strategies and policies devised by organisational heads and provide both upward and downward feedback and advice.  They are relied upon by all levels of the organisation.

So it is very important for your business that you employ the right managers.

Interviews and traditional ability measures will provide guidance in your decision-making, but there is another tool that has been found to uniquely predict performance in managerial roles.

It is called the Multi-Tasks Test.

RightPeople’s Multi-Tasks test paradigm has a long history in psychological research but has recently re-emerged as technological advances have made it possible to develop superior forms of Multi-tasks and efficiently administer this test in the average workplace.

Read on for more information about the theoretical basis for this test, the empirical research supporting it and how RightPeople can help you make one of the most important decisions you will make: who you put in charge of your business.

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WHO SHOULD YOU TEST FIRST?

It’s a reality that incompetent accounting staff can virtually destroy a business.

Accounting practices have evolved over the last decade due to unprecedented market pressures including commodity based pricing and increasing costs from training, technology, and litigation (Eilifsen, Knechel & Wallage, 2001).  A number of accounting scandals in the early 2000’s (e.g. Arthur Andersen and Enron) fuelled the revision of key accounting practices and highlighted the damage that can be done to an organisation’s reputation and livelihood when accountants and auditors act improperly, incompetently, or do not recognise or respond effectively to strategic risks.

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Needle in a Haystack: Getting the Right Graduate Can Prove to be a Tricky Task

Graduate recruitment requires both adequate planning and the appropriate tools. With tens of thousands of students graduating from universities every year, businesses can experience difficulty in finding the right individual with the skills, ability and determination to fit the requirements of their graduate plans.

Thousands of national and international businesses around the world have graduate programs that are prepared to hand-pick the most promising applicants, but choosing between them can be the tricky part, as a list of names and qualifications offer very little information about the people themselves. Personalities, ambition, and work ethics are all aspects that need to be considered when recruiting graduates.

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