How to Make the Most of People Skills on the Job
By Sandy Schroeder
If you are hearing more and more about people skills and emotional intelligence (EQ), don't be surprised. Forbes tells us people skills are continuing to grow in demand.
A recent Manpower Group survey of 2,000 U.S. employers found 61 percent of the companies were looking for people skills, such as problem-solving, collaboration, and communication, in their new hires.
Wherever you are in your work, people skills may make the difference in your future. One career coach said, "Strong people skills allow those who are simply smart to distinguish themselves from those who will actually lead." These are the people who easily relate to others, downplay conflict, and get everyone to believe in their mission.
Take a Look at These People Skills
Here is how they work in our daily jobs.
Actually listening - Are you really listening to your co-worker, or client, or just waiting to jump in with your thoughts? When people realize you actually heard what they said, a real conversation begins.
Awareness of who you are - Making the effort to spot your own assets and weaknesses is essential to strengthen them to connect with the people around you. When you know what needs work, and what you do best, you can be a stronger player in everything you do.
Ability to communicate - Getting your point across to capture the dreams of everyone around you is worth its weight in gold. Strong speech and writing skills are critical on the job, at home, and in the community. Keep working on yours and learn from the feedback that you get.
Knowing how to build trust - Without trust a personal or business relationship is not likely to go very far. In a fast-moving society that is often turbulent, trust is needed even more to build strong connections and lasting relationships. Trust requires mutual respect to help us function well and feel confident in our transactions.
Maintaining self-control - If you are always level and calm, this may not be an issue, but if you occasionally go off track, you may need to work on this one. Figure out what bugs you and what you can do to head off the flare-ups. Remaining level and calm helps build trust and deepen relationships with those around you.
Wherever you are working in a company, people skills will give you an edge. In complex projects, being able to communicate is invaluable to be successful. In sales, understanding where your client is, can make the difference to close the deal. In handling employees or working with others on creative projects, knowing how to listen can make everything work better.
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