Activity Interests

The Activity Interests Profile examines performance-critical classes of activity that people prefer to get involved in, according to their personal interests.

Nine factors may be applied to any occupation: for example, problem solving interests are used in scientific analysis, computer programming and labour relations; administrative interests apply to clerical record keeping as well as managing sales territories, and social service interests apply to any area where the ‘people’ element is important. Three other factors set these interests in context by assessing the application of interests to actual activities, preference for change and variety, and interest in growing by adapting interests.

Preference Factors assessed by this Profile are:

Factor Name Description A Low Preference
A High Preference
A. Problem Solving Problem solving brings satisfaction through examining issues and developing alternative solutions, then testing and applying the most feasible of these. Problem solvers check that the original issue has been resolved without causing any new ones. Spends time on other activities in preference to problem solving. May reach ‘wrong’ conclusions unless given guidance. Enjoys problem solving activities and seeks to have a sensible answer ready on time. Attracted to work requiring research, analysis and development of solutions.
B. Negotiating Negotiating bring satisfaction through persuading others to see another point of view, the change their position or  to make a favourable decision. Negotiating may be transparent or manipulative and for selfish or altruistic reasons. Negotiation isn’t restricted to formal roles. People who are ‘ready to deal’ are to be found in any group. Deals with issues and situations as ‘matters of fact’ that point to their own natural solution. Likes to debate issues and negotiate solutions. Attracted to work where others have to be ‘sold’ an idea.
C. Social Social interests bring satisfaction through looking after the needs and well-being of others and by seeing that everyone is treated in the same way. These interests are
suited to a function or role in, for example, an area of social services or human resources.
Gets relatively less satisfaction from activities that centre on meeting the needs of others. Puts time and energy into looking after the needs and well-being of others. Drawn to work that has a high ‘people’ content.
D. Practical Practical interests bring satisfaction through hands-on, physical activity and making things work well. These people see issues and events from a practical point of view. The
factor has applications in a wide range of fields including engineering, operating machines and equipment, and organizing objects and events.
Regards machines and tools as a means to an end, not an end in themselves. Enjoys physical activity, has a practical approach, prefers real and solid problems. Attracted to ‘hands on’ activities.
E. Aesthetic Aesthetic interests bring satisfaction through working with design, colour, appearance and presentation, especially the look, sound and balance of the parts and the whole.
These people may be sensitive to their surroundings or concerned for appearances. This factor has applications in many fields, from artistic expression to industrial design and architecture.
Places more importance on the content of work than on appearances. Able to work without concern for surroundings. Concerned for appearances, detail and the quality of work, and likes pleasant surroundings. Attracted to work that involves use of the senses.
F. Administrative Administrative interests bring satisfaction through dealing with the detail of keeping things up to date, looking ahead to prepare for what comes next and making sure things run
smoothly. This factor may correlate with Administer (Action Style profile) and Administrator (Team Roles). The underlying principles apply equally to a clerical ‘keep tidy’ function and to the formal function of administration management.
Doesn’t need to ‘get organized’ before starting work, and varies approach to routine work. Prefers flexible activities and independence of style. Uses routine systems and methods to coordinate activities, keeps things up-to-date, finishing work completely.
G. Verbal Verbal interests bring satisfaction through using the written and spoken word correctly to ensure others understand what is meant, and by taking care to understand what others
are trying to convey. The factor doesn’t measure skill or effectiveness – a skilled person may score low through lack of interest. But a high score should be accompanied by demonstrated verbal
communication skills.
Prefers work that doesn’t require extensive written or oral expression. May have difficulty explaining or taking the correct meaning from what others say. Uses words carefully to ensure others understand correctly. Attracted to work requiring written or spoken expression.
H. Numerical Numerical interests bring satisfaction through working with numbers to get an accurate result, and using numbers as a means of conveying information to others. The factor doesn’t
measure skill or effectiveness. A skilled person may score low through lack of interest, while another person may be interested but incompetent.
Uses numbers as a means to an end, not because of interest in them as a way of spending time and energy. Enjoys working with numbers and using them as a means of expression. Attracted to work that uses numbers to solve problems and convey meaning.
I. Managerial Managerial interests bring satisfaction through leading others, and from involvement in planning, organizing and controlling the action to reach objectives. This factor is
an essential element of a managerial profile, commonly coupled with Problem Solving, and it is beneficial in many others.
Respondent has not indicated interest in effective managerial activities. Attracted to managerial activities, especially planning, organizing, leading and controlling. Enjoys the work and role of a manager.
J. Application Application of interests is one of three factors, with Change and Variety and Growth, that set the context for factors A-I. It checks out the relationship between having an
interest in an activity and having the opportunity to actually engage in it. Many people are in situations where they either have little chance to do what interests them, or they may be unable to avoid the activities that do not interest them.
Doesn’t find enough use for interests in activities but tolerates this situation without satisfaction. Finds current work activities absorbing and enjoyable.
K. Change and Variety Change and Variety is one of three factors, with Application and Growth, that set the context for factors A-I. It shows ‘stickability’ at the low end of the scale and acceptance
of or preference for variability at the top end. A high score for Change and variety may be due to personal preference or to apparent inevitability. That is, the difference between personal choice and imposed conditions such as the nature of the work, or erratic activity patterns that are normal in the situation.
Concentrates on activities, and sees projects through to completion. Shifts from one set of activities to another, either to avoid uninteresting activities, or to match the pace of activities.
L. Growth Growth is one of three factors, with Application and Change and variety, that set the context for the first nine factors. It checks the likelihood that a person makes conscious
and deliberate choices about which specific activities to get involved in, and whether or not they select specific interests for personal growth and development. This factor also indicates an interest in developing other people – see the Coaching profile.
Stays with a selected range of interests, unlikely to move away from these interests unless circumstances require that. Pursues interests and activities by choice for self development. Encourages others to develop and has the potential to motivate people.

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