Personal Abilities[xii] and Attributes

Innate and developed aptitudes that facilitate the acquisition of knowledge and skills to perform at work.

Cognitive Abilities

Abilities that influence the acquisition and application of knowledge in performing various mental processes at work.

DescriptorDefinition
Categorization Flexibility The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
Deductive Reasoning The ability to apply general rules to produce logical answers for specific problems.
Fluency of Ideas The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, coherence, or creativity).
Form Perception The ability to perceive pertinent detail in objects and graphic materials to make visual comparisons and to see slight differences in pictorial figures such as shapes, shadings, widths, and lengths of lines.
General Learning Ability The ability to "catch on" or understand instructions and underlying principles to reason and make judgments.
Inductive Reasoning The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Information Ordering The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Mathematical Reasoning The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
Memorizing[xiii] The ability to remember information such as words, numbers, pictures, and procedures.
Multitasking[xiv] The ability to shift back and forth between two or more activities or sources of information during the same time period (such as speech, sounds, touch, or other sources).
Numerical Ability The ability to carry out arithmetical processes (such as additions, subtractions, multiplications, or divisions) accurately.
Pattern Identification The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
Pattern Organisation Speed[xv] The ability to quickly combine and organize information into meaningful patterns.
Perceptual Speed The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
Problem Sensitivity The ability to identify a problem or potential problem. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing its presence.
Selective Attention The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
Spatial Orientation The ability to know your location in relation to the environment or know where other objects are in relation to you.
Spatial Perception[xvi] The ability to think visually about geometric forms and comprehend the two-dimensional representation of three-dimensional objects; to recognize the relationships resulting from the movement of objects in space.
Verbal Ability[xvii] The ability to understand the meaning and precise use of words as well as the ideas associated with them, and to use them effectively; to comprehend language, to understand relationships between words and to understand the meaning of whole sentences and paragraphs; to present information or ideas clearly.
Written Comprehension The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Written Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

Physical Abilities

Abilities that influence strength, endurance, flexibility, balance, and coordination.

DescriptorDefinition
Body Flexibility[xviii] The ability to bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Dynamic Flexibility The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Dynamic Strength The ability to exert muscle force repeatedly or continuously over time. This involves muscular endurance and resistance to muscle fatigue.
Explosive Strength The ability to us short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
Gross Body Coordination The ability to coordinate the movement of your arms, legs, and torso together when the whole body is in motion.
Gross Body Equilibrium The ability to keep or regain your body balance or stay upright when in an unstable position.
Multi-limb Coordination The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
Stamina The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath.
Static Strength The ability to exert muscle force to lift, push, pull, or carry objects.
Trunk Strength The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing.

Psychomotor Abilities

Abilities that influence the capacity to manipulate and control objects.

DescriptorDefinition
Arm-Hand Steadiness The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Control Precision The ability to adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions quickly and repeatedly.
Finger Dexterity The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
Manual Dexterity The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Motor Coordination The ability to coordinate eyes, hands, and fingers accurately when required to respond with precise movements.
Multi-Signal Response The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
Rate Control The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.
Reaction Time The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
Speed of Limb Movement The ability to quickly move the arms and legs.
Wrist-Finger Speed The ability to make fast, simple, repeated movements of the fingers, hands, and wrists.

Sensory Abilities

Abilities that influence visual, auditory, and speech perception.

DescriptorDefinition
Auditory Attention The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
Depth Perception The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.
Far Vision The ability to see details at a distance.
Glare Tolerance The ability to see objects in the presence of glare or bright lighting.
Hearing Sensitivity The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
Near Vision The ability to see details at close range.
Night Vision The ability to see under low light conditions.
Peripheral Vision The ability to see objects or movement of objects to one's side when the eyes are looking ahead.
Smell The ability to perceive odours through the nose.
Speech Clarity The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
Speech Recognition The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
Sound Localization The ability to identify the direction from which a sound originated.
Taste The ability to perceive flavour in the mouth on contact with a substance.
Touch The ability to acquire information about the environment through skin contact.
Visual Color Discrimination The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.

Personal Qualities

Personal characteristics, most often developed from social context, background, and individual experiences, which can make a difference to work performance.

DescriptorDefinition
Accountability The personal characteristic of taking responsibility for one’s own actions and the actions of a group.
Achievement[xix] The personal characteristic of establishing and maintaining goals and exerting effort to accomplish them successfully.
Active LearningThe personal characteristic of pro-actively looking to understand the implications of new information in the current and changing workplace.
Adaptability The personal characteristic of adapting oneself to change and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Attention to Detail (Including Clerical Perception)[xx] The personal characteristic of being careful about details and thorough in completing work tasks.
Charisma The personal characteristic of possessing charm, attracting and arousing the interest, attention, or admiration of others through speeches, attitudes, temperament, or actions.
Creativity[xxi] The personal characteristic of coming up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop original ways to solve a problem.
Competitiveness The personal characteristic of possessing a strong desire to compete and to be better or more successful than others.
Concern for Others[xxii] The personal characteristic of having empathy towards others' feelings and needs and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Continuous Learning[xxiii] The personal characteristic of desire to continually develop and improve one's skills and knowledge in order to adapt to change and work effectively.
Cooperation TThe personal characteristic of having a good and cooperative attitude in order to achieve a common objective.
Dependability The personal characteristic of being reliable and fulfilling obligations.
Entrepreneurial Mindset The personal characteristic of identifying and seizing opportunities and moving from idea to achievement.
Independence The personal characteristic of developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Initiative The personal characteristic of taking on responsibilities and challenges, proposing, doing, or organizing something by oneself without being prompted by others.
Innovation The personal characteristic of alternative thinking to develop new ideas, to make improvement, or to develop a new approach that will benefit the organization.
Integrity The personal characteristic of being honest, ethical, and authentic.
Judgement The personal characteristic of making considered decisions or coming to sensible conclusions.
Leadership The personal characteristic of leading others towards a common goal by guiding, influencing, and inspiring them.
Motivation The personal characteristic of being driven by interest, need, or reason to achieve something or to reach goals.
Perseverance[xxiv] The personal characteristic of voluntarily and deliberately providing the effort required to accomplish a task or activity despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.
Resilience The personal characteristic of recovering from difficulties or changes – to function as well as before and then move forward.
Risk-Taking The personal characteristic of being willing to make a choice (action or inaction), calculated or not, involving a state of uncertainty in which some of the possibilities involve loss, disaster, or other undesirable outcomes, in the hope of achieving a desired result.
Self-Awareness The personal characteristic of being aware of own personality, character, and feelings including strengths, weaknesses, thoughts, behaviors, beliefs, motivation, and emotions.
Self-Confidence The personal characteristic of trust in one’s ability to achieve goals, believing in one’s potential and abilities, and knowing that one is capable of achieving goals when facing challenges.
Self-Control The personal characteristic of maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Stress Tolerance[xxv] The personal characteristic of being able to remain calm without being carried away by high stress situations and to effectively deal with such situations.
Tolerance of Ambiguity The personal characteristic of being able to function in an environment where there is uncertainty, unpredictability, conflicting directions, or multiple demands.
Trust in Others The personal characteristic of establishing and maintaining a sense of trust in one’s work colleagues allowing for the exchange of information and delegation of tasks.
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