Do you ever look at some of the successful people in your office and wonder how they do it? They are the first to get promoted, even get a raise. their projects are always successful, and everyone loves them. You work as hard as they do and yet you never seem to crack it.
Why? What’s their secret, you wonder.
The truth is they don’t have a secret, but they may have a superpower – and it’s called Interpersonal Skills.
In simple words, interpersonal skills are how you make the people around you feel comfortable, important, and loved. When everyone, from your subordinates to your bosses, start feeling special around you, you open yourself to new opportunities, abundance, and success. Interpersonal skills help you do just that.
Interpersonal skills are critical for effective communication and relationship success. Some people call interpersonal skills as people skills or soft skills but what they all actually mean is how well you communicate, react, and relate to others. These skills help you get along with your colleagues better and move away from arguments and unhealthy competition, paving the path to success and team growth. Interpersonal skills teach you to solve problems using compassion and empathy while being tolerant towards others.
When you have a high PQ (Interpersonal Quotient), people listen when you talk. This makes it easier for you to negotiate better deals and influence people to follow your lead. You are able to gauge how people react to you by decoding their body language and reading their facial expressions. You are highly charismatic and empathetic, making you very personable. You know when to assert your views and when to allow others to take the lead, making you easily likeable.
Here are 7 ways you can improve your interpersonal skills at work:
1. Work on your verbal communicationHow you use words to communicate with people decides if you can influence them positively. Your choice of words helps you crack negotiations in your favour, stand out in meetings, and be everyone’s favourite during break-room chit chat. It is absolutely important to know what to say and find the best way to say it. Effective verbal communication has the power to pump up people for a project or to calm them down in stressful situations. Work on building appropriate phrases for different situations such that people will want to listen to you. And make sure you deliver them with ease and confidence
2. Ace your non-verbal communicationBody language is as important as the spoken word. Facial expression, tone of delivery, gestures, stance, etc., all matter a great deal during communication. It is important that you master these tricks and also learn to decode the clues and cues people leave when listening to you.
3. Build relationshipsBuild strong relations with your colleagues and bosses. Find ways to help them in their tasks, maybe even work with them on a side hustle. Another way you can build good relations is by getting involved in things people are passionate about (if you find them interesting as well) and also be a part of their personal lives (don’t pry though). It is important to be assertive about your needs as well and to set certain boundaries to stop relationships from falling apart
4. Acknowledge others and take interest in themA kind smile or a thank you when someone offers to open the door for you goes a long way in making you more personable. We are always so busy and running around that we forget to acknowledge the people who help us get through the tough days. Make it a habit to appreciate people for their help and offer to help them in their little task.
5. Practice empathy and compassionEmpathy and passion are two extremely important interpersonal skills. When finding solutions for work-related situations or coming up with ideas for a product, always consider the effects on other people. The more you think good for others, the more you will be liked. In fact, you will also receive similar support from the rest of your team because you’ve always considered their opinions
6. Learn to listenSometimes, people just want to talk, they don’t even want a solution, just a pair of willing ears. Be that person who provides a shoulder when needed. More often than not, the best solutions and ideas come not by talking but listening to others. The more you practice listening, the more it’ll encourage people to communicate and listen to you
using compassion and empathy while being tolerant towards others.
7. Practice being assertivePeople love a calm but confident colleague. Know your craft well and ensure only the best decision is taken. Being confident about oneself and having strong opinions is an important skill. But don’t mistake being assertive for being rude or blatantly offensive. Remember to always communicate with compassion and empathy
There are many interpersonal skills you can aim to achieve and it’s easy to get overwhelmed by trying to master a bunch of them at once. Hence, we suggest practicing one or two skills at a time to form habits, and then adding a few more.