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What are interpersonal skills?
Interpersonal skills refer to your ability to communicate with people be it at office or at personal level. Broadly speaking, your attitude, behaviour, mannerism, non verbal skills, managerial potential, decision making and problem solving ability, assertiveness, etc. are all taken into account. When you score high on your interpersonal skills, you become an indispensable employee at workplace. Your colleagues not only like you but also look up to you for advice, suggestion and mentorship.
You can develop your interpersonal skills in the following ways:
Focus on your attitude and behaviour
How’s your reputation at office? Do you walk in grumpy in the morning or greet everyone warmly with a smile? These tips will help you:
- Smile when you talk. You are more approachable when you wear a happy face.
- Be an optimistic person.
- Say thank you when someone helps you out.
- Appreciate your colleagues and their effort.
- Interact with people and show genuine interest in them.
Improve your non verbal communication
Non verbal communication plays a major role in development of interpersonal skills. So you need to master your body language over here. This is how you do it.
- Listen actively to people when they talk. When you listen you win over their trust.
- Empathize on your colleagues. Be patient when they present their point of view.
Be a pro at verbal communication
One of the most important attributes that would make you a great leader with great interpersonal skills is your ability to communicate. To develop your communication skills, you need to make some effort as explained below:
- Read books on the concerned subject. A wonderful example is- How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie.
- Develop mindfulness when you talk – be aware of what you are talking and the purpose behind it.
- Be confident while presenting your idea or opinion before your team, management or boss.
- Do not get too serious while speaking. Take subtle humour to your advantage. People like it.
Be a team player
If you the leader, then this is your responsibility! First, you need to be considerate towards your team and understand their problems. Address your team, unite the members and make them understand the significance of team work. This is how you can be a team player and people will listen and respect you.
Hone your problem solving skills
Whether you are the leader or a general employee, having the ability to shoot problems would give you an edge over other employees. You are promoting a harmony in your organization when you are capable of resolving conflicts and figuring out solutions for day to day problems. And you shall definitely get the perks for developing this interpersonal skill.
More insights on this point: 5 steps to become an excellent problem solver
Be a decision maker
You have to take control of the situation. When your boss asks to you to handle a project independently, then show him/her that you can! And this is possible when you have sufficient knowledge on the subject. So how can you be an apt decision maker?
- Understand your responsibility
- Analyze the situation from different angles
- Take suggestions if needed, but make your decision the final
With experience, you will learn and develop those skills. So be an open minded and interactive person to be likable by others.