5DVP Developing Professional Practice Example

Questions

Activity 1 (AC 1.1)

Evaluate what it means to be an HR professional, making reference to at least one professional area and one behaviour in the CIPD Profession Map.

Activity 2 (AC 1.2)

Briefly describe the elements of group dynamics and give at least two examples of conflict resolution methods within an HR context.

Activity 3 (AC 2.1, 2.2, 2.3)

With reference to a recent or current project which you have led (or been part of a project team):

  • Provide evidence of using project management and problem-solving techniques in the course of the project
  • Explain how you successfully influenced, persuaded and negotiated with others in the course of the project (or other related activity

Activity 4 (AC 2.1, 2.2, 2.3)

With reference to a recent or current project which you have led (or been part of a project team):

  • Provide evidence of using project management and problem-solving techniques in the course of the project
  • Produce a professional development plan (PDP) plan to meet your professional development needs

Answer

Activity 1

What it means to be an HR professional with reference to one professional area and one behaviour

HR professional is the demonstration of skills and the individual ability to use the skills and knowledge towards influencing change of behaviour among the employees within an organization. People within organisations have to rely to professional expertise in order to ensure that they are guided to make the right decisions.  HR professionals ensure that professional standards are maintained and in the same way focus on ensuring that they deliver value and trust in the organisation. HR professionals engage in the process of managing human resources with the intention of ensuring that they develop good practices aimed at creating the intended future for the organisations. Professionalism involves using knowledge to understand the current organisation needs and develop channels through which the knowledge can be applied to deal with the changing uncertainties in the future of the organisation. HR professionals thus ensure that they enhance business performance and also facilitate improved employee experiences.

The HR professional in being a skilled influencer is a behaviour that is evident in enhancing commitment from the professional to the employees. The influencers ensure that they support the organisational stakeholders and focus on ensuring that they create value for the organisation. The skilled influencer through the four bands in the CIP professional map focuses on ensuring that they build a culture of influence, support the opinions of the stakeholders, focuses on meeting the organisational goals and objectives. All this according to Coetzer et al. (2017) improve nature of communication and interactions, and also seeks to provide support to individuals and the whole organisation.

The HR professionals in being the influencer also promote employee engagement. This is an area that focuses on the development of employment experiences within the organisation. It involves identifying means through which the employees have to work with their colleagues to support the organisational objectives. It is an area that promotes positivity and understanding of each other for purposes of ensuring that positive relationships are established among the employees in all bands of the CIPD map. With good relationships, the senior management can be able to establish good relationships with the employees and facilitate improvements in all levels of organisational performance (Howell, 2017).

Activity 2

Elements of group dynamics and examples of conflict resolution methods in the HR context

Tuckman (1965)

Bruce Tuckman in 1965 developed a team development model that explains the path of development followed by the teams in the determining their effectiveness. The model identifies with five stages of team development that include forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning stages. These five stages follow a process from the time when the need to develop a team arises to the time when the purpose of the team has been achieved and the team need to be adjourned (Egolf. 2013).

The forming stage is the first stage that involves having the team members goes through orientation in order for them to get familiar with each other. Members in this first stage seek to know each other as they engage in social interactions. The level of uncertainty is very high and the roles of the team members are not clear.

The second stage is the storming stage where in trying to establish themselves, the team members get into conflicts and difficult decisions making processes. There are many challenges experienced by the team members as they seek to challenge each other and compete with each other. It is at this point that people in the groups form cliques depending on their similarities and personalities. These are issues that might significantly result to group failures, and in order for the group members to continue working together, they have to focus on achieving the main purpose of the group. Members also have to develop ways to address the conflicts that arise and distract them from the main group purpose.

Norming is the third stage in the process, and here the members come to an agreement of what they are expected to do and achieve. The members are now able to appreciate others and their strengths and differences, and they also get to resolve the conflicts that prevent them from working together. The members share roles and responsibilities and they become clear as opposed to how they were in the initial stages. Members are therefore able to cooperate and work together towards achieving the group goals.

The fourth stage is the performing stage. It relates with the members’ full commitment to the group objectives. Decision making is easier and all members through their active participation in the team provide assistance to each other and feedback to enhance success. Although there are still conflicts arising, they are dealt with in a very constructive manner making it easier for the group to accomplish its objectives.

The final stage is adjournment, and it involves wrapping up all the tasks and providing results for the accomplishment of the group objectives. Group members get to move on to different tasks after adjournment.

Conflict resolution methods

Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Resolution Model (1974)

Thomas-Kilmann is a model developed by two psychologists who developed different options for handling conflict. They develop five responses and they include;

Competing; this is the option where people become assertive and they put no effort in resolving the conflict. For example when conflict arises between the management and the employees, the manager may argue on basis on power thus need the employees to follow their decisions. The employee may argue that they are empowered and thus their decisions to act in a certain way are to be considered (Karanika-Murray and Biron, 2015).

Accommodating is the second response from the model where a person gives in to other people’s orders even in situations when they may not want to. For example when the leader in a team says that a specific process has to be followed to attain the goals, the followers may decide to accommodate the leader because they can do nothing about it.

Avoidance is the third option to solving conflicts and people do not cooperate to deal with the conflicting issue. None of the interests from any of the conflicting parties are addressed. For instance when employees engage in culture clash and they seem not to understand each other to an extent to getting hostile, the leader may decide to leave out the issues resulting to the conflict and avoid having it arise until the employees have cooled down and less emotionally involved to address the issue.

Compromising is the fourth response where parties come to a mutually acceptable solution. Both sides of the parties are partially satisfied. For example, two employees working together with different personalities may experience hard time getting to meet organisational goals. The HR may consider giving each of them different platforms where they can work without reprimanding each other.

The fifth option is collaboration where both parties are willing to come together to develop solutions. This is the option that provides a win-win solution for all the parties. For example, the HR may feel that a particular employee is not performing as expected and the employee may feel that she is doing her best and is excellent at what she does. Both the HR and the employee can collaborate to ensure that the employee becomes aware of what she is not doing right and take in the available options provided to ensure that her performance is improved.

Activity 3

Project management and problem solving techniques

Project management according to Tayntor (2010, p. 4) is ‘the art of directing a project’. A project involves identifying with sets of activities that are supposed to be completed in order to a specific goal to be achieved. It involves having team that is part of the initiation, planning, execution, control, and closure of the specific activities with the aim of enhancing successful outcomes within a specified period of time.

Project management tool

Gantt chart

This is a project management tool that provides a timeframe for carrying out different activities in the project. It helps the project manager keep tracks of the activities and the schedules, and helps in identifying with the progress of the project activities. The activities in the Gantt chart are interdependent of each other, and this means that the start of one activity depends on the completion of the previous activity. The scheduling of work in the Gantt chart guides the project manager in identifying which project tasks are to be completed on which specific date. Failure to keep the project activities interdependent of each other means that they become hanging and this becomes a challenge in the project planning process.

With the use of a Gantt chart, it is possible to effectively identify the resources needed in completing the different tasks scheduled. It also helps the project manager effectively manage time and ensure that the final project is completed at the expected time. The project manager with the help of the Gantt chart is able to organise the teams and come up with the details that are specific to ensuring that the different tasks are carried out, and in addition ensure that the project keeps moving until it is completed. The reason why we chose this project management tool is because it is an easier tool that helps the management organise and plan the project from the time it is initiated to the time when the project is finished. It also enhances effectiveness in communication between the project manager and the team and also promotes transparency.

Work Breakdown Structure

This is a problem solving technique that helps the project manager solve project problems especially when the project is large. It is a technique that involves breaking down the project work into smaller portions in a hierarchical structure. This makes it easier for the smaller tasks in the project to be carried out by different members of the team. With the Work Breakdown Structure, it is easier to manage project activities, make it easier to identify and allocate resources needed to complete the activities, and also determine how effective it is to determine the progress of the project. As a problem solving technique, the team identified with the major issues that made the project to become complex, divided tasks among the team members, and finally came up with new ways of completing the tasks using the available resources and in accordance to the specified time.

Successful influencing, persuading, and negotiating with others in the course of the project

These are aspects that influence the degree to which people get to interact with each other as they work on a project. Personally in influencing other people with whom we worked with, I established a common ground where we would all get to work together as a team and effectively handling all the differences that would have negatively influenced our involvement in the project. I got to understand the views of the other people and worked towards ensuring that motivate them and increase their morale in working towards completing the project.

I also had to persuade my team members more especially when arguments were developed amongst us. I made sure to address situations with assertiveness and ensure that we all cooperatively achieved our goals and objectives in planning for the project. All the time, I did make use that I used positive language to avoid being offensive, and at the same time ensure that the other people are convinced on the need to successfully complete the project. In doing this, I had to effectively relate with the benefits of the projects to all the stakeholders.

Getting into negotiation with others is also an aspect that enhanced successful interaction and achievement of goals and objectives. This associates with the identification of what is needed for the project to be successful, and identifying the most important points to be considered during negotiation. I also focused on ensuring that all people understood the significance of negotiation especially when conflicts arise. This was necessary to creating a win-win situation for all the people that we were in conflict with.

Activity 4

Learning and development professional area

The Learning and Development professional area identifies with the creation of a learning culture where employees get to improve their skills, knowledge, expertise, ability, and competence in carrying out organisational tasks. It is importance for practitioners in all fields to consider identifying with the importance of having to develop a learning culture. This makes it possible for them to gain and use more skills for their own individual development, team development, and organisational development as well. HR experts have the role of ensuring that they motivate and encourage management in the need to enforce a culture where the employee continuously get involved in the learning process. In order to achieve success in this, the HR takes charge of developing learning programmes that are meant to encourage the employees to learn more and gain more skills. Ensuring that all the employees get the possible learning opportunities within an organisation is the most important issue in enhancing employee development, and this in turn facilitates organisational development. Learning at work is one of the professional areas that promote good working environment as well as employee satisfaction and commitment to their work.

Learning options for learning and development

The learning options for the learning and development professional area is to focus on individual professional development. This helps me identify with the most basic aspects of skill development and gaining of knowledge necessary to help me move up and grow in my career. In order to achieve this, my focus is to ensure that I get involved in on-the-job learning where as I work, I continuously get involved in the learning process. This will help me grow and achieve success in my line of work and also help me secure alternatives meant at generating ideas that are will help me improve in what I do. Off-the-job learning is also an alternative option where instead of learning while working at the same time, I take time off to specifically get involved in the learning process. Joining other professionals in conferences and seminars is also a learning option that I consider significant for my skill development. Another available options may I may also consider and that has been very effective is online learning.

Reflection

The importance of having to identify with a learning culture to enhance learning and development in the organisation is to ensure that the employees gain the skills needed in preparing them for the future. In most instances I desire to get involved in the learning process in order to prepare myself in the senior level. This explains why in my PDP, I aim at getting a learning and development certification by the end of December 2020. This will be effective in helping me secure a platform where I can easily get involved in the preparation of learning programmes for the employees, and also in the process focus on being a trainer or facilitator. I am confidence that even in the learning gaps identified in my assessment, I will have the ability to address them and become the best learning facilitator in the organisation. Specifically, I aim at ensuring that I get to understand the learning theories and their significance in learning and development. This will help them learn how to deal with adults while getting involved in the training sessions, and enhance positive developments for them. This explains my main reason in studying CIPD, as this course will help me grow and develop in my career and in my line of work as well.  

References:

Coetzer, A., Ryan, M.M., Susomrith, P. and Suseno, Y. (2017) Challenges in addressing professional competence expectations in human resource management courses. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources55(4), pp.454-475.

Egolf, D.B. (2013) Forming storming norming performing: Successful communication in groups and teams. IUniverse.

Howell, A. (2017) Engagement starts at the top: the role of a leader’s personality on employee engagement. Strategic HR Review.

Karanika-Murray, M. and Biron, C. (2015) Derailed Organizational Interventions for Stress and Well-Being. Springer Netherlands:.|| Imprint: Springer,.

Riasi, A. and Asadzadeh, N. (2015) The relationship between principals’ reward power and their conflict management styles based on Thomas–Kilmann conflict mode instrument. Management Science Letters5(6), pp.611-618.

Tayntor, C.B. (2010) Project management tools and techniques for success. CRC Press.

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