CPD - Contributor Personality Development

Course Outline
  • Topics 1-6 relate to the basic axioms or “mental models” that students carry about themselves, about success, careers, contribution, etc. The right mental models are a necessary prerequisite for developing into a Contributor.
  • Topics 7-12 are 6 core practices that will help a student manifest the ideal of contributor ship in one's life.
  • Topics 13-15 relate to the students capability to connect into the job-market.
Sr. Course
1 Who is a Contributor
Student develops an appreciation of who the Contributors are and how they fundamentally differ from Non-contributors in their overall approach to work, to other human beings, to society as a whole.
2 The Contributor’s identity
Student develops his/ her own answer to the question “who am I?” The student becomes aware of the fact that Non-contributors usually define themselves in terms of what they have acquired in life (e.g. qualifications, position, years of experience, etc.) while Contributors define themselves in terms of what they will become or accomplish (e.g. capacity to deliver, commitment and ownership of the organization‟s purpose, etc.).
3 The Contributor’s vision of success
The student explores the meaning of success in his life. Through this exploration, the student is expected to recognize that Contributors have a wider definition of success than Non-contributors. While Non-contributors define success in terms of material success, achievement, external impact, etc., Contributors are able to widen this definition of success to include personal fulfillment, development of self-esteem, ongoing development of personal capabilities etc.
4 The Contributor’s vision of career
The student learns to distinguish between an “acquisitive career” and a “contributive career”. An acquisitive career is one in which the career-seeker is focused on acquiring higher position, higher salary, more benefits etc. This preoccupation with selfish interests often damages the individual‟s career, as well as, damages the organization and society. A contributive career is one where the career-seeker is focused on contributing, with rewards being a by-product of the contributions made.
5 The scope of contribution
The student learns to perceive that in all type of work, every type of role, there is a possibility of contributing at multiple levels – contributing to self, contributing to organization, and contributing to society.
The student also appreciates the difference between “acquisition for self” and “contribution to self” – the former being material acquisition and the latter being conscious development of oneself through the medium of one‟s career.
6 Embarking on the journey to contributor ship
The student recognizes the fundamental “building blocks” for becoming a Contributor – the first building block being a shift from a “victim” to being a “creator of one‟s destiny”; the second building block being acceptance of the ideal of contributor ship; the third building block being the willingness to take full responsibility for one‟s own development; the fourth building block being the capacity to reflect on one‟s development and make appropriate modifications.
7 Design Solutions
When faced with a challenge, the Contributor‟s first response is: “Can we find a solution?” This is unlike a Non-contributor who may respond to the challenge by trying a little and giving up, blaming others, or finding excuses to cover up the issue.
Whereas, the Contributor finds a solution. In other words, the Contributor develops the capacity to find solutions through continuous practice and learning from other Contributors.
In this topic, students learn the importance of willingness and ability to find solutions.
8 Focus on value
What does creating value mean? It means making a positive difference, a tangible impact, a specific contribution to any situation. This positive difference or impact can be in the form of achieving a specific goal, creating a product, creating „human touch‟ in a particular interaction, or enhancing one‟s own capacity, or the capacity of one‟s colleagues and team- mates.
Contributors are therefore extremely result-focused, but the result is measured in terms of value created.
In this topic, students learn to clarify the meaning of the word “value” and how value is created in various situations.
9 Engage deeply
Contributors are instantly distinguished by the way they approach work. They get involved. They are enthusiastic. They go deep into the subject. In short, Contributors love what they do.
This is in direct contrast to Non-contributors who want to do only what they love - an approach that seems reasonable until you realize that life and workplaces have so much variety that you may very often be called upon to do tasks that seem unpleasant or boring until you get involved.
In this topic, students learn the importance of engaging deeply with whatever work they do – at work, in study, in personal life.
10 Think in Enlightened Self-interest
Contributors think in Enlightened Self-Interest. In every situation they get into, they find a way to create something good for self and for all at the same time – including team mates, bosses, customers and their organization.
Contrasting to this is the mindset of a Non-Contributor. Such a person is only concerned with his/ her own self-interest in a situation. He/she is not concerned about the impact (positive or negative) on the other person. This leads to unpleasant situations, broken relationships, unhappy team-mates, subordinates, and bosses, and lower trust in any situation.
Students are expected to learn to appreciate the importance of thinking win-win for all stakeholders and also in various situations.
11 Practice Imaginative Sympathy
One of the unique qualities of Contributors is their ability to appreciate and understand others‟ life situation, others‟ mental condition, and others‟ point of view. How do they do this?
They have consciously developed a „way of thinking‟ called „Imaginative Sympathy‟. In this way of thinking, they are able to give due importance to the human aspects of a situation, and not just the technical or commercial aspects.
But this is not all. Imaginative Sympathy goes beyond looking at the human aspects of the situation. It also means that Contributors are able to anticipate possible interactions or reactions, they are able to take a multi-dimensional view of a situation and they are able to bring about changes or results while taking everybody along with them.
Imaginative Sympathy translates itself into active concern for others. Students will learn the importance and consequences of Imaginative Sympathy in a workplace situation.
12 Demonstrate Trust Behavior
Contributors recognize that they are able to achieve results and make contributions with the help of other human beings. They receive this help if and only if they are trusted and, in turn, trust. Contributors practice trust behavior from very early in their career, thereby building a huge trust balance (like a bank balance) over their career and relationships.
The term Trust Behavior may be described as character-in-action. This includes keeping one‟s word and commitments, staying with a task, acting with integrity in every situation, making sure that there is complete transparency in one‟s actions and interactions, etc.
Students are expected to learn to develop a deep appreciation of trust behavior and how it is practiced.
13 Resume Building
In this topic, students learn to develop a resume for the job-market. Students will learn to develop both a generic resume and resumes specific to some types of jobs. Students learn about best practices and common errors in developing their resume.
Most important, students learn to analyze the jobs offered and present themselves in terms of their potential / willingness to contribute to the job.
14 Group Discussions (GDs)
In this topic, students learn (i) how to participate in a group discussion from the contributor‟s view-point (i.e. how to speak) (ii) how to contribute to the development of the topic (i.e. what to speak) and (iii) to develop the Contributor‟s view-point on various GD topics (i.e. how to interpret a topic of discussion from the point of view of a contributor)
15 Interview Skills
In this topic, students learn about (i) common interview questions and how to develop answers (ii) typical challenges faced in interviews beyond the questions (such as body language, grooming, presentation) (iii) most important, the student learns the importance of trust building and creating confidence in the interview.