The paper 'SWOT Analysis and Personal Development Plan " is a great example of management coursework. Based entirely on a personal perspective, this semester has provided me with one of the most significant opportunities to reflect on my key personal skills and to subsequently reconsider changing my self-identity and purposes. Accordingly, I have been able to reconfigure my self-identity and traits in light of the parameters within which I could interact freely and grow intellectually in my new environment. In this respect, the first year at the university has provided a platform for progress in my academic work as well as sharpening of my social skills in an environment where I had to adapt to unfamiliar people and new ways of doing things.
From the outset, I was rather apprehensive. After several weeks, I built new relationships and familiarised myself with my new environment allowing me to drive out anxiety and apprehension. I have been able to discover many things concerning my learning styles, attitudes and personality. This has been through the use of tools such as QAA Core Skills questionnaire that indicated my qualities, traits, capabilities and weaknesses.
There is, therefore, a range of areas concerning my personal, career and learning development that need to be improved. Despite having made milestones in social and educational activities, it is clear that my time management skills need to be improved if I have to realize my core objectives. Poor time management skills have been a major hindrance. For instance, I have found it difficult to prioritise between engaging in social activities and educational activities. This has affected my grades. Indeed, such information presented me with data that I used to develop my SWOT analysis and Personal Development Plan (PDP) to explore my strong and weak spots and to improve where necessary (Bolton 2005).
I identified three weaknesses of my traits. These include lack of self-confidence, poor decision-making skills and poor time management skills. Through the use of the PDP, I expect to improve on these weak areas with the view of transforming into a self-confident decision-maker and time manager, as these are important attributes that would help in my career growth in the future. Through a subsequent review of the SWOT analysis, it was clear to me that one of my key strengths lay in my communication skills.
These were indeed evident in the way I adapted to my new environment, made friends within a short period of time and participated in group works. Indeed, on applying McCrae’ s Big Five Locator, it came to my knowledge that I had high agreeableness. Indeed, this was reflected in several traits such as being an active team player, trusting, altruistic and humble. It was also clear that I’ m somewhere between being an extrovert and ambivert.
This was reflected in the manner in which I’ m sociable and assertive. Indeed, my communication skills are demonstrated in the way I interact with people. I have been able to be understood clearly with my friends, I have been able to make many friends and I have also been perceived as a highly straightforward person whose intentions cannot be misunderstood. My strong interpersonal skills have also been rated at 2 on a scale of 1 to 5 in the Higher Education QAA Core Skills.
For instance, I’ m able to talk and interact freely as well as listen and negotiate with ease. Having strong communication skills has been demonstrated in the way I present my reports and participate proactively in a group discussion in addition to working interactively with teammates (University of Waterloo 2013).
Bolton, G 2005, Reflective Practice: Writing and Professional Development, 2nd edn, Sage Publications, London, p.3.
Milkman, K, Chugh, D & Bazerman, M 2008, How Can Decision Making Be Improved? viewed 8 Jan 2014, http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Publication%20Files/08-102.pdf
University of Waterloo 2013, Teamwork skills: being an effective group member, The Centre for Teaching Excellence Environment, viewed 21 Oct 2013, https://uwaterloo.ca/centre-for-teaching-excellence/teaching-resources/teaching-tips/tips-students/being-part-team/teamwork-skills-being-effective-group-member