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Difference Between Personal and Personnel

Personal vs Personnel

There are many pairs of words in English language that are similar sounding but have different meanings. Those not having English as their native language remain confused and cannot make out differences. One such pair of words is personal and personnel. The problem here is compounded with both words pertaining to people or individuals. This article intends to clarify the meanings of both words with their correct usage.

‘Personnel’ is a word that means people who work in an organization. So there is a personnel manager in the organization and he oversees personnel policies. If you are in a factory trying to find the products that you need to sell in your retail shop, manager of the factory comes forward and tells you that his personnel will help you out with matching products. Here the word personnel correctly indicates the employees working in the factory who can very well and easily match the products you are looking with those that are made in the factory.

Personal is a word that means private or one’s own. When you talk about personal belongings, personal matter, personal baggage, you are referring to that which is yours, belongs to you. Personal relates to a single person, whereas personnel relates to a group of people. Another difference between personal and personnel is that while personal is an adjective, personnel is a noun. Hence, it is always personnel training and not personal training while it is always personal belongings and not personnel belongings.

In brief:

Difference Between Personal and Personnel

• Personal is an adjective meaning private or one’s own whereas personnel is a noun referring to a group of people working in an organization

• When you share your opinion, you say that it is your personal opinion while when you talk about the employees of an organization, you talk about the personnel of the company.


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