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personal vs personnelThe word personal and personnel are such a pair of words which easily confuses people, due to which they use it incorrectly, but they have very different meanings. While personal is used when we are talking about something which is private or owned by someone.

On the other hand, personnel means the people who are under the employment of an organization or business. Let’s take a look at these examples to understand the difference clearly:

  • The personal information of all the personnel should be recorded carefully.
  • Personality development sessions are helpful for the personal grooming of the personnel.
  • Personal selling is a form of promotion performed by sales personnel.

In these examples, we’ve used both the words in a single sentence, wherein personnel is used to refer the manpower of the enterprise while personal means ‘belonging to or concerning a specific person’.

Content: Personal Vs Personnel

  1. Comparison Chart
  2. Definition
  3. Key Differences
  4. Examples
  5. How to remember the difference

Comparison Chart

Basis for Comparison Personal Personnel
Meaning Personal means private, i.e. affecting an individual or a specific person. Personnel is used to indicate the staff or human resource segment of the organization.
Pronunciation ˈpəːs(ə)n(ə)l pəːsəˈnɛl
Stresses on First Syllable Last Syllable
Part of Speech Adjective Noun
Examples It’s my personal youtube channel. The personnel of this organization is very energetic.
Keep your personal life away from professional life. All the personnel of Production department are on strike.
I transferred the money in his personal account. Newly joined personnel are provided a training for 3 months.

Definition of Personal

The word ‘personal’ is an adjective that we use to mean something which is related to you, concerns you or affects your private life or your body. Let’s take a read of the points below to understand its uses:

  1. To indicate ‘belongs to a particular person’:
    • It’s your personal view on the matter, and I don’t agree with it.
    • Please take care of your personal stuff during the journey.
  2. To express the physical presence of a person or an action performed by a person himself:
    • Personal existence of the members is mandatory at the meeting.
    • After the written test, there is a personal interview of the candidates.
  3. To refer to private:
    • Can I have your personal number?
    • They recorded his personal details for future reference.
  4. Concerning with body:
    • One should take care of his personal hygiene.

Definition of Personnel

The word ‘personnel’ is a noun which refers to a group of people who are employed by the company under the employment agreement for an adequate pay called salary.  The personnel work for the company and follows the order and instructions of its top management. Here are some points which discuss its uses:

  1. The workforce of the organisation:
    • Last year, a lot of personnel had been laid off by the company.
    • According to the new rule, personnel above 60 are given retirement benefits.
  2. To mean the armed forces of the country:
    • The military personnel are very fit.
  3. Division of the company which is concerned with the hiring, training, grievances and firing of employees.
    • The employees can contact the personnel manager, for any issues and complaints.
    • She worked as a manager in the personnel department.

Key Differences Between Personal and Personnel

The difference between personal and personnel are described in the points below:

  1. The word personal is used to denote something which belongs to a specific person or concerns him. It talks about the private life or relationships of persons. On the contrary, personnel implies the staff or the human resources of the organisation, which works for the company, for an adequate consideration, i.e. salary.
  2. When it comes to syllable, ‘personal’ gives emphasis to the first syllable, whereas personnel emphasizes the last syllable.
  3. The word personal is an adjective which modifies a noun or a pronoun. Conversely, personnel is a noun, as it denotes a group of people.



  • Mr Parker’s personal assets are donated to the trust after his demise.
  • The book is about the personal life and struggles of the author.
  • Don’t take it personally.
  • Sophie does not like to talk about her personal life with every person.


  • It is the personnel of the company which makes it successful or unsuccessful.
  • Personnel department plays a very important role in change managment.
  • All the personnel of the organisation are invited to the party.
  • An external source of recruitment is helpful in supplying personnel to the organization, to a greater extent.

How to remember the difference

The words personal and personnel look alike, but there is a vast difference in their pronunciation, spelling and meaning. Personal means private or individual, whereas personnel connotes the employees of the company or cadre.