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Old 11-22-2012, 08:59 AM   #11
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

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Originally Posted by Aneirin View Post
Adminstration is the skill for managing a large organisation, and part of managing an organisation includes recruiting people, the right people for the job. A psychology roll would certaintly be complementary, however administration is a rather broad skill (which is why I suggested having interviewing and screening of recruits as a techninque of it)
Exactly. That broadness makes Administration a plausible complimentary skill. But I'm totally uncomfortable with it stealing the thunder of such specialised traits as Psychology, Body Language and Empathy, whose sole purpose is understanding other people's minds.
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Old 11-22-2012, 08:59 AM   #12
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

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Originally Posted by Aneirin View Post
Adminstration is the skill for managing a large organisation, and part of managing an organisation includes recruiting people, the right people for the job. A psychology roll would certaintly be complementary, however administration is a rather broad skill (which is why I suggested having interviewing and screening of recruits as a techninque of it)
I agree that Administration could be used to weed out people unsuitable for working within an organisation and even estimate the relative suitability of applicants for the corporate or bureaucratic culture in question. But I wouldn't allow it to be used to determine whether or not someone could be relied upon to kill someone in cold blood and never tell anyone about it or whether someone was psychologically suited to tolerate long periods of social isolation.

For that, use Psychology (Applied).
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Old 11-22-2012, 09:06 AM   #13
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

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Originally Posted by Pursuivant View Post
Psychology springs to mind and has already been mentioned.

Detect Lies might work if you're looking for honesty.

Administration might work if you're just shuffling through resumes.

Leadership might include some ability to judge a person's likely character under stress.

Other than that, roll against the prerequisite skill for the job - Teaching to choose teachers, Streetwise to choose thugs, etc.
I'd largely agree with those choices, with a few extra notes:
  • If it's mental and emotional suitability (lack of disruptive mental disadvantages) that you seek, or if you're trying to identify an aptitude (presence of a Talent), then Psychology is definitely the front-line skill. It's the poster child for developing aptitude tests, intelligence tests, personality inventories, etc.

  • I might allow Teaching to assess aptitudes (Talents), but none of the rest. An important role of any trained teacher is recognizing students' gifts. Not being able to do this is a hallmark of somebody who is assigned to teach but not a properly schooled teacher.

  • Leadership would be useful for determining "Will this person fit into the team?" and "Will this person obey orders?" It wouldn't test for specific traits, just deliver Y/N answers to those specific questions. It may well reveal relevant Code of Honor, Fanaticism, and Sense of Duty traits, though.

  • The specific job skill sought is essential if you're trying to assess training (points in skill) rather than aptitude (Talent) in an interview or a test. A psychologist or a teacher could tell you "This guy is good at math," but not, "This guy is an above-average particle physicist."

  • Administration really isn't the go-to skill here if you're directly interacting with the candidate. It's the skill of checking references, reading résumés, and going through the reports of people with the above skills. If several of mental suitability, broad aptitude, team compatibility, potential loyalty, and specific training are desired, then this would become the primary skill used, as long as the interviewers had those other skills.
Detect Lies is a bit of an odd man out. Any direct interviewer using Leadership, Psychology, Teaching, or a specific job skill could roll against Detect Lies to determine whether they're getting the truth or a ruse, but I don't think it would be useful all on its own. If you're trying to assess general truthfulness ("Does this person have Compulsive Lying or Truthfulness, and if so, at what level? Does he have Easy to Read? None of the above?"), then that's still Psychology.
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Old 11-22-2012, 09:10 AM   #14
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

To reduce it to game terms, what you are doing is diagnosing the presence or lack of such traits as Senses of Duty, Compulsive Behaviors, or forms of Pacifism. The skill to use for that is Psychology.

If you just want to choose someone who is competent, then I could see Administration as being the appropriate skill (enhanced or limited by your level in the desired skill itself). But the OP specifically mentioned loyalty and emotional fitness, which is clearly a job for Psychology.

EDIT: and ninjaed into superfluousness by Kromm.
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Old 11-22-2012, 09:20 AM   #15
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

I should add that most specific roles for these sorts of skills are issues of familiarity. I have to agree with what Icelander said about breadth . . . but I would stop short of saying that most applications of the skills we're discussing would be optional specialties or techniques. I'd treat them as familiarities only, and have any penalties dissolve after far fewer hours than the 200 needed to justify even one skill point. Of course, nobody is likely to survive even 10 minutes of combat using their office-learned Leadership skill at -2 to -4 to rally men in battle, so in practice, getting rid of that penalty can be tricky at times.

A simple way to assess "What are you familiar with?" is to look at other skills. Someone with Leadership and Administration takes no familiarity penalty to use Leadership in the office; someone with Leadership and Soldier takes no familiarity penalty to use Leadership in battle; someone with Leadership and Streetwise takes no familiarity penalty to use Leadership on a bank robbery; and so on. The same goes for the other skills.

Tasks are another matter. Interviewing is definitely something that one can get better at separate from doing the job. I would allow it as an Average technique that defaults to Interrogation, Leadership, Psychology, or Teaching at no penalty, or Administration at -4, and that can be bought up to default+4. I'd also allow it to default to any job skill-4 and be improved to full job skill, but with the caveat that it would only work when assessing things relevant to that job. This wouldn't cost less, because the other bases would also have restrictions on scope (loyalty, mental suitability, etc.).
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:01 AM   #16
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

My Two Cents:
Criminology applies if you're attempting to profile criminals. Psychology is definitely better and has a wider scope, but I still see Criminology as having use for things like one's Modus Operandi and disadvantages often related to criminal activity (sadism, kleptomania, trademarks, etc).
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:13 AM   #17
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Psychology can't tell someone's skill level, but I don't see how Administration can tell someone's future behaviour, mindset and the like. Psychology is the skill for figuring how a person will behave.
Psychology is the skill for figuring out how an individual will behave. But in most work situations, you are concerned with how an individual will behave as a member of a group and of an organization, and how they will affect the behavior of others. That's not a purely psychological question. Even the small group end is at the interface between psychology and sociology—there are in fact two distinct academic disciplines, psychological social psychology and sociological social psychology, that study it.

And saying that the fact that you are applying psychological knowledge makes something Psychology (Applied) is too simple, and makes Psychology a kind of über-skill. When you lead a team you are applying psychological knowledge; when you give a speech you are applying psychological knowledge; when you engage in advertising or propaganda you are applying psychological knowledge (Bernays, the founder of public relations as a profession in the United States, was Freud's son-in-law); when you bargain with someone you are applying psychological knowledge; for that matter, when you run a session of GURPS, you are applying psychological knowledge. But we don't let a roll against Psychology (Applied) substitute for all the relevant skills!

Arguably, knowledge of how the minds of other human beings work is the single most important driver of human intelligence, and all higher cognitive skills are just specialized applications of Theory of Mind. More narrowly, you could describe the Talent of Smooth Operator as representing that broad application of psychological knowledge. But it costs more than a skill does!

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Old 11-22-2012, 10:25 AM   #18
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Psychology is the skill for figuring out how an individual will behave. But in most work situations, you are concerned with how an individual will behave as a member of a group and of an organization, and how they will affect the behavior of others. That's not a purely psychological question. Even the small group end is at the interface between psychology and sociology—there are in fact two distinct academic disciplines, psychological social psychology and sociological social psychology, that study it.

And saying that the fact that you are applying psychological knowledge makes something Psychology (Applied) is too simple, and makes Psychology a kind of über-skill. When you lead a team you are applying psychological knowledge; when you give a speech you are applying psychological knowledge; when you engage in advertising or propaganda you are applying psychological knowledge (Bernays, the founder of public relations as a profession in the United States, was Freud's son-in-law); when you bargain with someone you are applying psychological knowledge; for that matter, when you run a session of GURPS, you are applying psychological knowledge. But we don't let a roll against Psychology (Applied) substitute for all the relevant skills!

Arguably, knowledge of how the minds of other human beings work is the single most important driver of human intelligence, and all higher cognitive skills are just specialized applications of Theory of Mind. More narrowly, you could describe the Talent of Smooth Operator as representing that broad application of psychological knowledge. But it costs more than a skill does!

Bill Stoddard
I'm merely going by the RAW statement to
'Roll against skill to predict the
general behavior of an individual or
small group in a particular situation'.

I'm not asking to use it to influence anyone. Only for the prediction. I suppose one could argue for Sociology:
'This is the study of societies and
social relationships. A successful skill
roll lets you judge how well a large
group of people will work together;
deduce the social pressures contribut-
ing to a crime wave, revolution, war,
etc.; or predict the most probable out-
come of dissimilar societies coming
into contact.'

But still, the example focusing on crime waves, revolutions, wars etc. seems to indicate a scale larger than a big box shop or the crew of a spaceship.
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:35 AM   #19
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
I'm merely going by the RAW statement to
'Roll against skill to predict the
general behavior of an individual or
small group in a particular situation'.

I'm not asking to use it to influence anyone. Only for the prediction. I suppose one could argue for Sociology:
'This is the study of societies and
social relationships. A successful skill
roll lets you judge how well a large
group of people will work together;
deduce the social pressures contribut-
ing to a crime wave, revolution, war,
etc.; or predict the most probable out-
come of dissimilar societies coming
into contact.'

But still, the example focusing on crime waves, revolutions, wars etc. seems to indicate a scale larger than a big box shop or the crew of a spaceship.
Organizations fall neatly in between those two. And in work we're often dealing with organizations.

But I'm also going to say that "general behavior" is precisely not what we're concerned with in a work situation. We're concerned with work performance and with psychological traits that affect work performance.

I certainly would allow Psychology to complement the skill used to choose a suitable recruit for a work group. And I would allow Psychology to screen recruits for character defects that would make them unsuitable, or to figure out why an employee was having work behavior problems—there are lots of managerial tasks where that sort of knowledge bears directly. But as I said, I don't want to turn Psychology into the über-skill for dealing with all human relationships.

Bill Stoddard
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:44 AM   #20
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Default Re: Skill For Profiling Potential Recruits?

Quote:
Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Organizations fall neatly in between those two. And in work we're often dealing with organizations.

But I'm also going to say that "general behavior" is precisely not what we're concerned with in a work situation. We're concerned with work performance and with psychological traits that affect work performance.

I certainly would allow Psychology to complement the skill used to choose a suitable recruit for a work group. And I would allow Psychology to screen recruits for character defects that would make them unsuitable, or to figure out why an employee was having work behavior problems—there are lots of managerial tasks where that sort of knowledge bears directly. But as I said, I don't want to turn Psychology into the über-skill for dealing with all human relationships.

Bill Stoddard
I'm not trying to make it über for dealing with all human relationships. But answers to questions such as 'does the character have a Sense Of Duty to the corporation', 'is character Intolerant of authority', 'will character behave Callously', 'is a Workoholic or not' etc. seem to fall into the sort of task that Psychology performs.
As for falling between two sizes: GURPS does not have a third skill, so the only reasonable conclusion is that there is some point where Psychology and Sociology either meet or overlap. Just like campaigns other than WWII draw a line between Tactics and Strategy. Now, WWII adds Operations as a middle skill, but that is campaign-specific.
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