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人际智商决定职业生涯

2014-05-09    来源:财富网    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

小到个人发展,大到企业管理,我们今天在工作中面临的许多挑战都可归结为如何管理我们自己的个性,如何理解和我们共事的人们所具有的个性。要解决这类问题,就需要我们提高对“人际智商”的重视和训练。

Most of us would prefer to get through the workday without a scuffle. After all, very few of us are actively looking for a fight.
我们大多数人都希望顺顺利利地度过每一个工作日。毕竟,我们中很少有人会主动找人扯皮打架。

That said, getting along with our colleagues is no walk in the park, and this tension can influence our performance. Sometimes, an employee in our department is simply the wrong person for the job -- their own grandiosity, critical nature, lack of interest, or incompetence leads to a toxic environment that drags everyone down.
尽管如此,跟同事相处可不像公园漫步那般惬意,而这种紧张关系会影响我们的工作表现。有时候,我们部门中某位员工根本就不适合从事手头那份工作——他们为人浮夸,生性挑剔,缺乏兴趣,平庸无能,催生出一种有可能拖垮每一个人的有毒环境。

Consider this example: At one company, several engineering teams were understaffed, owing to a yearlong hiring freeze. The engineers felt overworked, and the CEO was concerned about missing long-term deadlines. The company formed a cross-team committee to decide how to fairly allocate new hires to the teams. However, the head of the committee was an independent-thinking engineer who had a reputation for being argumentative and critical of others. The committee easily agreed on where the first new hires should be allocated, but there were issues after that. The lead engineer wanted to assign the next hire to a protégé of his who ran a less-important team; other members objected that would misalign the organization. Rather than backing down, the engineer went to several committee members individually and argued with them in a way that they perceived as hostile and controlling. The committee members spent time discussing his behavior, and a few of them lost sleep over the issue. The whole process was far more time-consuming and messy than it needed to be.
大家不妨思考一下这个例子:在一家公司,由于长达一年的招聘冻结期,几个工程团队的人手严重不足。工程师们劳累过度,CEO担心他们可能无法按时完成任务。于是,这家公司就成立了一个跨团队委员会,以便决定如何公平地把新员工分配给相关团队。然而,这个委员会的负责人是一位有独立见解的工程师,出了名地喜欢争辩,批评他人。所有委员非常轻松地就首位新员工应该被安排在哪里达成共识,但随后就出现了问题。这位首席工程师希望把下一个新员工分配给一位得意门生负责运营的不太重要的团队;其他委员表示反对,他们认为这样做将会使组织失调。这位工程师没有选择让步,而是分头找几位委员谈话,充满敌意的争辩口吻让这几位委员觉得他想一手遮天。委员们花了一些时间讨论他的行为,有几位还因为这件事夜不能寐。就这样,一件原本简单的事情被搞得混乱不堪,耗费了大量宝贵的时间。

Or consider the research scientist in a pharmaceutical company who had hired a new chemist. She came with an amazing set of recommendations from her former colleagues, and indeed appeared remarkably talented. After a month or so, however, the new hire was performing at a barely adequate level. When the supervisor pointed out the discrepancy between his expectations and her performance, she explained she had fallen behind but would catch up. Unfortunately, the issue persisted. Finally, the supervisor called in a colleague from human resources to speak with her. Over a series of conversations with HR, she began to acknowledge that she no longer found her profession interesting and she needed a change. Six months after she was counseled out of the organization, she joined the marketing division of another firm, where she blossomed. This story had a happy ending, but the supervisor wished the chemist had understood and acknowledged her own desires sooner so she might have saved herself -- and his workplace -- some considerable disappointments.
再看看另一个例子。在一家制药公司,一位负责研发工作的科学家聘请了一位化学师。来公司时,她带着几位前同事撰写的一组热情洋溢的推荐信,起初看起来也确实很有才华。但大约一个月后,这位新员工的表现就只能算是勉强合格。这位上司明确指出,她的表现差强人意,远未达到他的期望值。她解释说,她知道自己掉队了,但会迎头赶上。不幸的是,这个问题随后仍然存在。最终,上司召来人力资源部一位同事与她谈话。经过一系列交谈,这位化学师开始承认,她已经对自己的工作失去了兴趣,需要做出改变。被劝离这家公司6个月后,她加入了另一家公司的营销部门,很快就干出了一番成就。这个故事有一个圆满的结局,但这位化学师的上司真希望她更早地理解、承认自身的愿望,这样或许就可以让她自己(以及她所在的研发团队)免于经受这段令人失望的插曲。

Employees like the supervising engineer and the newly minted marketing specialist face complex issues that involve understanding their own personalities and those of others. We draw on an ability to reason in this area I call "personal intelligence." When our understanding in this area fails, we can make poor choices that compromise our working relationships and, perhaps, our reputations.
与上述监理工程师和新晋营销专家相类似的员工面临一些涉及到理解自身和他人个性的复杂问题。我们需要具备在这个领域进行推理的能力,我称之为“人际智商”(personal intelligence)。一旦我们对这方面的理解失败,我们就可能做出有损我们的工作关系,或许还会伤及声誉的错误选择。

In 2008, I introduced the concept of "personal intelligence" in part to organize an emerging understanding I saw taking place within psychology of how people understand their own and others' personalities. This understanding included new studies on self-knowledge, person-perception, how children seem to be able to "read the minds" of their friends, and how we use our knowledge of traits to anticipate the behavior of other people. Personal intelligence is the capacity to reason about this personality system.
我在2008年提出了“人际智商”这一概念,部分原因是为了整合心理学学界对于人们如何理解自身和他人个性这个问题的最新见解。这种理解包括对以下领域的新研究:自我认识,对他人的知觉(person-perception),为什么小孩似乎能够“读懂小伙伴的心灵”,以及我们如何使用自己所掌握的性格特征知识来预测别人的行为。人际智商就是推断分析这种个性系统的能力。

Personality is in some ways like an orchestra. Just as an orchestra has its percussion section, strings, woodwinds, brasses, keyboards, and a conductor, personality has its motives and emotions, knowledge and intelligence, plans for action, and self-management. Personality performs the music of our lives.
个性在某些方面就像一个管弦乐队。正如一个管弦乐队拥有打击、弦乐、木管、铜管和键盘等乐器,以及指挥一样,个性有其动机和情绪,知识和智能,对行动的规划和自我管理。个性演奏着我们的生活乐章。

I joined with David R. Caruso of Yale University and Abigail T. Panter of the University of North Carolina to see if people varied consistently in their ability to understand personality. We tested people's problem-solving about personality in 12 areas (or more, depending upon the research phase). In each study, we found that people who were good at problem-solving in one area were good at problem-solving in most of the others. For example, a test taker who understood that talkativeness and high energy-level often go to together was also better at identifying problematic goals such as "always telling the truth" -- which can lead to tactless or otherwise hurtful remarks, depending upon one's personal truths. Those who reasoned poorly in a specific area tended to be less good in all the other areas. This suggested that people possess a broad intellectual capacity to understand personality -- and that some people are better at it than others.
我跟耶鲁大学(Yale University)的大卫•卡鲁索和北卡罗莱纳大学( University of North Carolina)的阿比盖尔•潘特一起观察人们理解个性的能力是否始终如一地呈现多样化。我们测试了人们在12个与个性有关的领域(或更多,这取决于研究阶段)解决问题的能力。我们在每一个研究中都发现,擅长解决某一领域问题的人也擅长解决其他大多数领域的问题。例如,一位懂得爱说话与精力充沛往往相依相伴的测试对象也更擅长发现存在问题的目标——比如“永远讲真话”,因为这个目标可能会导致一些不得体或以其他方式造成伤害的言论,具体取决于一个人对真相的认知(personal truths)。那些在某一特定领域的推理能力差强人意的人士,往往也不擅长分析所有其他领域的问题。它表明,人们理解个性的知识能力存在很大差异,一些人在这方面的能力高于其他人。

Now, consider that engineer who had trouble imagining his impact on other people and the chemist who had tired of bench science.
现在,让我们回过头来谈谈那位难以想象自己对其他人造成的影响的工程师,以及那位厌倦板凳科学的化学师。

Those who knew the engineer understood that he was unaware of how dubious his choices seemed to others -- he hadn't intended to disturb others and simply didn't appreciate the disruption in their lives he had caused over what might otherwise have been a readily solved personnel issue.
熟悉那位工程师的人都明白,他并没有意识到他的选择引发了其他人的猜疑——他无意妨碍别人,也根本不明白在这件原本很容易解决的人际关系问题上,他已经打乱了其他人的生活。

Those who knew the chemist were delighted she finally realized that being a bench scientist was not her calling, but wished for her sake she had realized it earlier in her career.
让熟悉那位化学师的人们非常高兴的是,她终于意识到,当一个板凳科学家并不是她的人生使命,但出于为她着想起见,他们真希望她能够在职业生涯的早期就意识到这一点。

Once we recognize that people vary dramatically in their abilities to understand personality, we have a new explanation of why some of our colleagues do so well, whereas others make sub-optimal choices and behave in counterproductive ways. Just knowing that can help us deal with their shortcomings and understand the challenges they may face.
一旦我们认识到,人们理解个性的能力存在显著差异,我们就可以采用一种新视角来解读下面这种现象:有些同事表现得非常出色,而其他同事却时常做出次优选择,他们的行为总是适得其反。仅仅知道这一点就可以帮助我们应对他们的缺点,同时理解他们可能面对的挑战。

There are also ways for business leaders and HR educators to foster understanding in this area:
企业领导者和人力资源教育者也可以采用一些方式来增强员工对个性的理解:

1. We can develop training programs that teach people about personality and how we perceive one another. These programs could include overviews of clues to personality, of personality traits and their implications, and of how people set reasonable vs. problematic personal goals. Research on school-based social and emotional learning programs -- which often include information about personality -- indicates that students who have the opportunity to learn these subjects go on to exhibit behavioral advantages relative to those who don't. Programs aimed to teach personality for an adult audience may well have similar positive effects.
1. 我们可以制定培训项目,向人们传授涉及人的个性和我们如何看待彼此的知识。这些项目可以包括对个性线索,个性特征及其影响,人们如何设定合理与有问题的个人目标等问题的概述。一些依托于学校开展的社交和情绪学习课程(这些课程经常包括与个性相关的信息)的研究表明,相对于没有学过这些科目的学生,那些有机会学习的学生往往会表现出行为上的优势。旨在向成年受众传授个性知识的培训项目或许也可以产生类似的积极作用。

2. We could provide employees access to valid mental tests of personal intelligence like the Test of Personal Intelligence (TOPI) that I am developing with Caruso and Panter. These scales make tangible the kinds of reasoning that people use to understand personality and help to identify people who are strong performers in the area. Pending the availability of such scales, valid measures of emotional intelligence may serve as a stopgap. Today, psychologists who study psychological testing have found that testing alone confers benefits: People who take a good mental test and receive a thoughtful interpretation of their scores benefit on average in their sense of well-being.
2. 我们可以让员工接受有效的人机智商心理测试,比如我正在与卡鲁索和潘特开发的“人际智商测试”(TOPI)。这些尺度使得人们用来理解个性的推理类型变得明确可见,有助于确认在这方面表现强势的人士。无法使用这类尺度之前,我们可以暂且使用那些测量情商的有效工具。研究心理测试的心理学家们现在已经发现,光是接受测试就能带来一定的好处:平均而言,如果一个人接受优秀的心理测试,得分获得周到的解释,他或她的幸福感往往会得到提升。

3. We might reframe the relevant HR activities such as the expert who helped the chemist, as problem-solving about personality. Understanding the rules of personality is a skill set not everyone has -- or needs to have -- and it's reasonable for people to seek help in this area when they need it.
3.我们或许可以重构聘请专家帮助那位化学师这类人力资源活动,转而致力于解决与个性有关的问题。理解个性的规律是一项并非每个人都具备、但人人都需要的技能,需要时寻求这方面的帮助合情合理。

4. We should acknowledge the importance of personality. Speaking to the value of competence at understanding personality -- and recognizing that it can now be measured -- is a start toward empowering employees who have those skills.
4. 我们应该承认个性的重要性。宣扬理解个性的能力的价值,同时认识到,现在已经可以衡量这种能力。让拥有这种技能的员工掌握更大的权力,这是第一步。

A variety of research indicates that acuity at understanding personalities is an important element within functional workplaces. The theory of personal intelligence explains how people define and apply traits to those around them, how they evaluate their coworkers' plans, and their reputations. It helps explain why some people in our organization may not understand the effects of their behavior.
多种研究表明,敏于理解个性是职能化工作场所的一个重要元素。人际智商理论阐述了人们如何确定性格特征,同时把它应用在周围人士的身上;如何评价同事的计划和他们的声誉。它有助于解释为什么我们的组织内或许有一些人不理解自己的行为造成的影响。

In any organization -- business, governmental, non-profit, or educational -- managers establish a structure by delineating an organizational chart that explains the lines of responsibility among managerial and staff positions. But managers and employees also understand that the people who fill those boxes have skills and characteristics that go far beyond what those boxes suggest.
在任何组织(企业,政府,非营利性或教育机构),管理者总会划分一张用以解释各个管理和工作岗位职责的组织结构图,以建立一个结构。但管理者和员工也明白,填补这些岗位的人所具备的技能和特征可能远远超出这些岗位所暗示的范畴。

Personal intelligence theory tells us that some people are stuck at the box-level of an organizational chart while others can go beyond the boxes to read the people who occupy those positions. That said, it also predicts that no matter how good we are, any of us can make mistakes at times.
人际智商理论告诉我们,有些人的思维被卡在一张组织结构图的岗位层级,而另外一些人可以超越这些条条框框,读懂占据这些职位的人。尽管如此,它也预示着,无论我们多么优秀,我们任何人都难免犯错。

We'll all have a greater appreciation of one another, and maybe even be better able to work together, if we recognize that many of our work challenges involve managing our own personalities and better understanding one another.
如果我们认识到,我们面临的许多工作挑战涉及到管理我们自身的个性,还需要更好地理解其他人的个性,我们彼此间就会更加欣赏,甚至能够更好地一起工作。(财富中文网)

John D. Mayer is a professor of psychology at the University of New Hampshire and the author of Personal Intelligence: The Power of Personality and How It Shapes Our Lives.
本文作者约翰•迈耶是新罕布什尔大学心理学教授,著有《人际智商:个性决定人生》一书。



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