Many careers require consistent, if not constant, interaction with other people. This is true even for jobs that would seem to favor introverted personalities and independent work styles. For example, even if you’re a software engineer, writer, or statistician, you still need to be able to communicate and collaborate with your team.
Below are different inter-personal skills that employers look for in their employees:
One of the most important interpersonal skills in any job is communication. Whether you work in IT, customer service, construction, or any other industry, you will need to be able to communicate clearly and effectively with others both verbally and in writing. Some jobs also require skills in effective public speaking.
- Conflict Management:
Whether you are a manager or an employee, you will likely need to resolve conflicts at some point in your job. This might involve solving an issue between two staff members, between yourself and a colleague, or between a client and your company. You will need to be able to listen fairly to both sides and use creative problem solving to arrive at a solution.
Part of being a good manager, employee, or colleague is the ability to understand and show empathy for others. For example, if a customer or colleague calls with a complaint, you will need to listen thoughtfully to the person’s concerns and express compassion for their issue. Empathy is an important skill that will help you get along with everyone in the workplace.
Even if you are not a manager, it is important to have some leadership experience and ability. Leadership requires being able to motivate and encourage others and help a team achieve success.
Listening is a skill that goes hand in hand with good communication. While you need to be able to express your own ideas, you also need to thoughtfully listen to the ideas of others. This will help your clients, employers, colleagues, and employees feel respected and valued.
Negotiation is an important skill for many positions. Depending on the specific job, it might involve creating formal agreements (or contracts) between clients or helping colleagues solve a problem and determine a solution. To be a good negotiator, you must be able to listen to others, use creative problem solving, and arrive at an outcome that satisfies everyone.
Even if your job involves a lot of independent work, you still need to be able to collaborate with others. Teamwork involves several of the skills already mentioned: you need to be able to listen to others, communicate your own goals, motivate your team, and resolve any conflicts that may arise.
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