First and foremost, it is important to know that although communication and social situations may not seem to come as easily to you as it does to others, you are still a good person with important thoughts and opinions that people want to hear. Knowing this will help you understand how specific interpersonal skills can impact your social relationships.
According to social scientists, Hatch and Gardner, there are four components of these interpersonal skills that, when practiced and developed, will help you become the communicator you want to be and make certain social situations, such as in the work place or at networking events, easier. Here are the four interpersonal skills you can work on to achieve more success on a social level.
1. Organizing GroupsThis involves bringing together a group of people and having everyone focus on one common goal or purpose. Why is this so important? The person who is able to effectively reach an entire group of varying opinions, personalities and character traits and pulls them together to work cohesively on one project is someone that people immediately feel that they can trust and relate to. In the work place this is an important trait and one that can give you the ability to stand apart from the crowd and position yourself as a leader.
If there is an important project that your team is working on, by bringing a group together and commanding respect from a room full of people, you can show your boss and your colleagues that you have the ability to relate to a number of people with varying personality traits. This will put you in the position for social success in the office and may help you get promoted.
2. Negotiating SituationsConflict is a necessary evil to solving problems and finding solutions that will help propel people forward. But managing this conflict is not always done as effectively as some people would like. For many, conflict can cause a person to get defensive, go into attack mode, or cower away and give in to demands from the opposing party. But for skilled negotiators, mediating any situation and finding a resolution that makes everybody happy is a strong trait that people respect.
At work this is particularly true. In order for a negotiation to take place successfully both parties must walk away from the situation with confidence that they got what they wanted out of a partnership or deal. If someone walks away disappointed or feeling that they got the short end of the stick, there are significant problems that could arise down the road. Strong negotiators can stand apart in the workplace just by honing their skills.
3. Personal ConnectionsIt is human to have emotion and to feel empathy or care for other people. Still, this tends to come easier to some people rather than others. At work, personal connections are of the utmost priority when it comes to networking in particular. Networking can take place in the office, by talking with colleagues and getting connections within an organization to help get promoted, or outside the office by working with a number of partners or people.
When you have the ability to relate well to people and show them that you value their thoughts and opinions, you can open them up to be more positive toward you and about the work relationship you have which can open new doors professionally.
4. Social AnalysisPersonal connections are shown on the surface but being able to analyze your approach and determine how people are detecting your connection is equally important. This final interpersonal skill will help you navigate relationships socially and professionally and help feel people out in terms of what they are thinking and feeling in a situation. In the office this is particularly important. If you are interviewing a potential investor, you need to know how they are feeling about your presentation.
With strong social analysis skills you can determine what makes them tick and what gets them excited and focus your presentation and all presentations thereafter on targeting this particular feature. This will help you close more deals and thrive professionally. By working on your interpersonal skills, you can develop not only as a person but also as a professional making you more valuable to a corporation and improving your chances at getting a raise or promotion.