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Title: The management of natural competencies
Author: Schreiber, Eva
ISNI:       0000 0004 2740 0100
Awarding Body: University of Strathclyde
Current Institution: University of Strathclyde
Date of Award: 2012
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Management science, as well as psychology, has tended to avoid the issue of why people like different activities, and why they tend to be good at the activities they like. The aim of this thesis is to tackle this issue by motivating and introducing a construct, called “natural competencies”, and exploring it empirically. “Natural competencies” are defined as resources that enable activities that are inherently rewarding or exciting for the subject, thereby creating positive emotions. Performing them is viewed as being part of their personal identity which transcends the social roles in which a person engages. Utilizing “natural competencies” may also result in feelings of fulfilment. It is hypothesized that natural competencies tend to appear in leisure (non-working) activities, that is, activities chosen by the subject because they are pleasurable and, therefore, motivating. So, leisure activities should be a source of information regarding an individual’s natural competencies. Ideally, occupational activities reflect natural competencies too, but alienation may prevent this. An empirical investigation was performed by in-depth-interviewing 20 subjects whose hobby it is to collect art. Collecting art may stimulate informal learning and may be intellectually challenging; so it might elicit pleasure, engagement, and ultimately fulfilment, thereby being relevant to natural competencies. Analysis of interviews was performed by “modified grounded theory”, an approach blending inductive and deductive, theory-driven methods. By combining the interviews with observations, a triangulation method was also utilized. The results are preliminary and qualitative, but they indicate that subjects experiencing and utilizing their natural competencies at occupational activities will experience a greater level of fulfilment. This basic result is stated in the “competency fulfilment model”. A basic practical implication of the work is that non-working activities may be fruitful for identifying and developing competencies in working adults. However, more work is needed to test and develop the competency fulfilment model in other domains, and to continue sharpening the concepts involved
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.B.A.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available