What is Competency?

You must have heard the statement “You should have the competency to do this” or “You lack the competency for this project”. There is often a reference made to one’s competency with respect to a certain task, project, or job. But what is competency? If we go by the general meaning of it based on the way it has been used in the statements, competency refers to the ability to do something efficiently. Precisely so, this is how competency has been defined by theorists and professionals as well.

The term competency has been derived from a Latin term “competentia” which means “is authorized to judge” or “has the right to speak”. However, in 1797, this Latin term was changed to “competens” meaning “sufficiency of qualification”. This meaning is in accordance with the popular meaning of competency which refers to those underlying characteristics of an individual that are required to perform a job or task successfully..