The ability to communicate within an organization depends heavily upon people’s interpersonal skills and it makes the difference between a good and a great employee. We use interpersonal skills every day to communicate and interact with others both individually and in groups. It would, therefore, be important to note that Interpersonal skills are a part of our daily life but when not properly managed it could cause ruin.
Interpersonal skills include a wide variety of skills, though many are centered around communication, such as listening, questioning and understanding body language. They also include the skills and attributes associated with emotional intelligence, or being able to understand and manage your own and others’ emotions.
People with good interpersonal skills tend to be able to work well in a team or group, and with other people more generally. They are able to communicate effectively with others, whether family, friends, colleagues, customers or clients. Interpersonal skills are therefore vital in all areas of life at work, in education and socially.
Through awareness of how you interact with others, and with practice, you can improve your interpersonal skills. This section of Skills You Need is full of information and practical advice that you can use to improve and develop your interpersonal skills.
Interpersonal skills are also sometimes referred to as social skills, people skills, soft skills, or life skills. Although all these terms can include interpersonal skills, they tend to be broader and may therefore also refer to other types of skills. Many people also use the term communication skills for interpersonal skills, but interpersonal skills covers more, including decision-making and problem-solving, plus working in a group or team and emotional intelligence.
Good interpersonal skills are often viewed as the foundation for good working and social relationships, and also for developing many other areas of skill.
For example, good leaders tend to have very good interpersonal skills and develop other areas of their leadership skills by building on these.
Without good interpersonal skills, it is often more difficult to develop other important life skills. It is therefore worth spending time developing good interpersonal skills.
Unlike specialized and technical skills (hard skills), interpersonal skills (soft skills) are used every day and in every area of our lives.
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