What does it really mean to know what your own skills are? Or the skills of the people you work with? And why should you care?

We are moving away from a world of rote, process driven work. If your job can be defined by a series of processes it can be automated by increasingly capable robots of all forms (I have heard that Tom Davenport’s new book will be on the types of skills and job you should focus on if you want to avoid being replaced by a robot).

Our skills, and how they connect to other people’s skills, are what we have to offer. And our social networks are getting more skill centric.
Klout has started to make inferences about skills from social feeds. Pretty thin, but to me this seems more accurate than LinkedIn.

Steven Forth Klout Profile

LinkedIn drives a lot of user clicks through skill endorsements, but does it give you an accurate picture of a person’s skills? Check out Susan Adam on Forbes “Everything You Need to Know About LinkedIn Endorsements.”

Would you make a decision on whom to work with and what a person can do based on the list of skills available from LinkedIn? Or Klout? But then ask yourself, are the skills in your corporate skill management system more accurate?

Of course you would not. But you still need to figure out who has what skill, how those skills have been applied in the past, and how to put together people for projects. That is the problem we are solving at TeamFit.

TeamFit give you a much deeper picture of a person’s skills. Where they have been applied. And what skills get applied together.

Data Analyst 1

You can see what projects they have used the skill on and filter by any combination of skills, industry and location.

Data Analyst Project View

And drill into to get a better picture of just how skilled the person really is. We can see that this person is almost certainly solid at dynamic pricing and probably an expert, though likely not a guru.

Dynamic Pricing Guru Likelihood

I can get a deeper understanding of how this expert in dynamic pricing approaches his work by seeing what other skills he applies with this. The TeamFit UI doesn’t support this view yet (it will) but the data is there. Seems as though non-linear dynamics is associate with dynamic pricing, and that there is a cluster of skills around data analysis.

Data Analysis Cluster of Skills (2)

I might want to see what other skills are being used on these teams. So I check out the Concurrent Systems V2 Pricing Strategy Project.

People&Skills on the Pricing Strategy Project

And the Seldor Technologies Pricing Transformation project.

People&Skills on the Pricing Transformation Project

By exploring these connections between skills, projects and people I am getting a rich understanding of what skills are used together and how they get applied to projects. I can use this to get better at designing teams, for pricing projects in this case, and choosing people for team.

And we know that the road to professional services excellence is to assign people to teams based on their skills, and not just their availability.


Top photo from Wikipedia.