17 Interpersonal Skills to Stay Top of Your Job
Besides the business skills you might likely have knowledge of, there are some interpersonal skills and qualities you will need to succeed in your job.
These skills are important to develop to make your relationship with people in the workplace cordial.
What are Interpersonal Skills?
Interpersonal skills are skills needed in order to have a smooth job execution within an organization.
These skills are personal and are geared towards expanding your skillsets.
Since it has been established that these skills are necessary, it is necessary to list them out and know how they can help one excel in their job.
Best 17 Interpersonal Skills and Qualities to be Effective within a Team
1. Show Interest in Others
This is by far one of the most important interpersonal skills to be possessed by anyone in the workplace.
The workplace is a place where your personal desires should not be your utmost priority.
Your personal likes are good, but must not be put first ahead of the interest of the general good of others.
When you work in an organization, your ability to condone, accommodate and look out for the good of others is what shows your professionalism and nothing less than that.
What you know will get you to the top, but your attitude towards others will definitely go a long way to determine how long you may last in that job.
Showing interest in others can also seek to bring out the best in people particularly when you are working as a group.
In a team, the different individuals are important and no one is to be seen as more important than anyone else.
2. Focus on Your Body Language
It is possible to say one thing and your body language portrays another thing altogether.
This is the case when confidence is absent. This is one thing you need to sort out in your relationship with people in the workplace.
Your body language should align with what you say or do.
Sometimes, people pay more attention to what our body language says than what we say and will definitely judge by what they see more than what they hear from you.
Unknown to you, they may not let you know except you are open minded.
So, sometimes before you appear before people, especially before a presentation, stand before a mirror in your room and try rehearsing your speech and body movement to make sure they are on point.
This will help boost your confidence always.
3. Speak Clearly
Clarity is important to effective communication. When communicating or interacting with people, be vocal enough and make sure your accent is clear enough to your hearers.
People get frustrated listening to you if they can’t hear you well either because you are speaking so low or because of your accent.
That is why it is good to take time to learn public presentation. This training will help you achieve your aim of clarity during communication.
4. Speak in an Acceptable Tone
Do you know that when you speak people are sensitive to your tone? This is very true and something you should take note of.
The tone of your voice can affect the way your communication or message is taken by your hearers.
Part of the things you learn during training in public presentation is how to moderate your tone while addressing or communicating with people.
Your tone should be put in check so that your message will not be misunderstood or miscued.
The use of harsh tones can be seen as a sign of disrespect or disregard by your audience.
And know that once this becomes their idea about you, they will tag you as a disrespectful fellow.
Also, low tones can exude either fear or lack of confidence, which also has its own effects.
5. Work on Your Listening Skills
You have two ears and one mouth; this is probably because you are meant to listen more than to speak.
This said, you need to sharpen your listening skills as this will help you know what to say and when to say it.
When you are able to listen, you will be able to evade some mistakes that arise due to listening problems.
One problem you will face with a low listening ability is the tendency of jumping into conclusion even without proper verification of an incident.
This will definitely put you in a bad light in the eye of people in the work place.
To sharpen your listening skills demands patience. Sometimes, issues may demand that you talk even without listening, but if you are able to apply patience, you will give a better judgment, and you will be able to say what is in the interest of everyone, rather than how you feel.
6. Socialize in New Settings
Socialization is one thing that occurs every day of our lives. It is for your development both in and outside your workplace.
So, socialization should be seen by you as a necessity and not something to baulk at. Socialization occurs everywhere.
When you find yourself in a new environment, one thing that will help you adapt well within a short time is your ability to socialize within your new setting.
This can be difficult but must be seen as a means of survival and not a bad omen.
One thing is sure when it comes to socialization, and that is new experience.
When you find yourself in a new environment, you learn their culture and the way things are done.
This will gift you an invaluable amount of experience as well as knowledge.
7. Maintain Eye Contact
You have to maintain a good eye contact when addressing people. That eye contact is very important to your listeners or the people you are relating with.
Try fixing your eyes on them and especially their eye balls. This will send the right signal to them.
When communicating with people on one-on-one situation, and you tend not to maintain eye contact, it shows that you are either afraid or not confident of yourself.
You have to avoid this. This is not a good impression as people when they sense you are not confident will find it difficult to work with you.
Eye contact on your audience will definitely help your course, especially if you need to persuade them to buy into your ideas.
Nobody wants to risk working with someone that lacks confidence or that is unsure of themselves.
You may know what you want to say, but a good eye contact is a sure way of underlining your confidence.
8. Be Assertive, Not Aggressive
We all have our own ideas and how we feel towards different issues. This is only a sign that the brain is working.
However, there is always a problem of how to present our ideas and how to make people see things the way we see them.
Confrontation and aggression are not part of this equation.
Your ideas should not be geared towards intimidating others. Remember that other people may not be able to see things the way you do, however, that should not breed space for intolerance and aggression just because your ideas are not supported.
Engage more in dialogue and try to see what comes out of it. Aggression is not an option.
When you engage in a meaningful dialogue, you earn some respect and dignity.
Understand that it is not a matter of who wins or loses, but who makes sense the most.
9. Choose Effective Communication Channels
Communication is good no doubt about that. But there is always an issue emanating with employing some channels to convey ideas and thoughts.
Employing the right communication channel is sure to bring you the desired result in the workplace.
There are different communication channels available at every workplace and ideas and complaints are handled through these channels.
If you want to achieve what you want communication wise in the workplace, then it is important to employ the best communication channels.
This is one challenge faced in almost every organization. Sometimes, people in the workplace tend to overlook the right channels and employ methods of communication that have no problem to solve for them.
But for you as someone that wants to last long in your workplace, try to correct this error.
10. Be Flexible
Succeeding in your workplace demands a lot of flexibility. Flexibility helps you adapt to different situations in the working place.
These conditions can be stressful, challenging, and to an extent unpleasant. But you have to employ the flexibility skill.
Flexibility can also be the ability to handle different tasks if the need arises.
Flexibility is shown in your ability to do a particular thing in different ways, depending on the scenario and situation at hand. When you are able to do a thing in different ways, it helps you become efficient in your job.
11. Take on a Challenge
Challenges are scaffoldings to greater heights in any job. Doing one thing well will make you a great employee but your ability to think outside the box and take a step higher than before is one thing that will keep you relevant in your job for a long time.
One way to improve your skills as an employee in the workplace is your ability to take on new challenges.
Though some challenges may be more difficult than what you are already used to, yet it is a sure way to improve yourself and become better than who you are.
Shying away from challenges will keep you stagnant and redundant in your job in the future.
Remember, for everything you want in your job, there are people that want it more than you.
So, competition is the name of the game and only those ready to take the bull by the horn get the lion share.
12. Remain Positive
It is important to know that there is a big relationship between your success or failure and your mindset.
If you must achieve great feats in your job, then you must remain positive minded.
The positivity should not be dependent on what is on ground.
The mind remains the battle ground where your success or failure is determined.
So, failure to be positive minded is a call to failure in your job and this is something you don’t want. Guard what goes on in your mind in regards to your job.
Difficulties and challenges in your job is absolutely normal and not something to fear.
Sometimes, in order to get out difficult situations surrounding your job, the first step is to win the battle in your mind, make your plans, and execute them.
13. Accept Criticism
Accepting criticism is one thing that a lot of people are never willing to do. But whether you fancy criticism or not, you can’t shy away from it.
This is where open-mindedness comes to the fore. If you are not open minded in your job, you can’t accept criticism.
If you desire to grow, accepting criticism is a key factor in what you want to achieve in your job.
Try to understand that the essence of criticism is to make you better and not to make you worse than you are.
When you are criticized, your weaknesses are highlighted for you to make amendments where necessary.
It is understandable that many people can criticize for the wrong reasons or for the wrong motive, but for whatever reason anyone criticizes you, take the correction and work on yourself.
That may save you from future embarrassment.
14. Be Respectful
To be respectful cannot be overlooked in the workplace. Respect is needed in the workplace at all levels.
Trying to stay respectful is not a sign of weakness, rather it means you are civilized and know how put others’ interest at heart.
Treat your employer with respect not out of fear of losing your beloved job but as a sign of civilization.
Respect is needed from you towards your employer even without his/her presence to monitor what you are doing.
Also, to your fellow colleagues in the office, show some level of respect even if they are lower than you in rank or age.
When you respect people, they are likely to reciprocate the kind gesture and that can be shown in the form of cordial relationship that will build up between you and them.
15. Be Yourself
This is self-awareness. As much as you are advised to socialize anywhere you find yourself, it is not a license to lose your identity.
Your identity is what makes you unique. So be yourself even when you are socializing with people in the workplace.
Being yourself demands that you reserve your originality, which is what distinguishes you from every other person in the workplace.
Do your thing and do not try to imitate anyone’s lifestyle. Life of imitation stinks and can keep you uncomfortable in your job.
When you do your thing, you feel relaxed and feel at home within yourself.
However, caution should be taken when doing this to avoid being overconfident and intimidating others with your lifestyle.
Don’t overdo things and don’t show less concern toward the welfare of others.
16. Have Patience
Patience is key to anything you do in the workplace. There is always that tendency to follow events as they roll in.
Though this is cool in its own way, patience will help you avert some avoidable mistakes. Without patience, mistakes are inevitable.
Patience keeps you going in your job, and that is the truth.
Trying to follow events and do things in a hasting manner will certainly expose your flaws and bring you into an unwanted situation. So apply patience today.
Also, one area you will need patience is in dealing with your coworkers. Some people are difficult to deal with and require a lot of patience to relate with.
So, if you must maintain a cordial relationship with people in the workplace, then you must be patient with their excesses.
17. Ditch the Distractions
Distractions are real threats to your job. Every job has its own distractions for any employee to deal with.
Most of these distractions are not entirely avoidable but can be managed and dealt with if the right attitude is exhibited. Ditch the distractions!
One way to deal with distractions is to bear in mind how dangerous and threatening they can be to your job and career.
Distraction is anything that takes your productive time in the office as well as your attention, preventing you from achieving your goal in the workplace.
You need to minimize your talking time and the time you spend with people during working hours, except they are customers that need your attention or your employer.
This article has provided the various interpersonal skills and qualities you need to excel in your job and career.
These skills and qualities tend to build up the capacities within you and also help you work in a team effectively and help achieve the company goals both in the short and long term basis.