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Requirements for the Role

To judge the suitability of a person to a particular role one must know what expectations it carries with it. Those who occupy a position in an organisation, take on a role. This can be understood as a bundle of (stable) expectations (“Go get the car, Harry!” or “Can we have some more coffee, chairwoman?).

Those who are members of an organisation must be fit and ready to fulfil the requirements of the role, which are linked to a position. These have a factual aspect (“Boss, how should the presentation look?”), a social one (Boss, I am constantly clashing with Mr. Huber!”) and a temporal one (“Boss, how does the plan look for next year?”). As the occupier of a position one usually also has different roles: one is boss to one’s employees, an employee to the boss, project leader for a team of colleagues, contact person for internal and external customers, a member of the union and captain of the company volley ball team. This entails the challenge of adequately dealing with wearing a variety of different ‘hats’. Here, a multitude of traps and often rather dysfunctional role mixes loom for both the role carrier as well as his communication partner.