When applying for a job there are many things that you must bring to the table. Some of these things will include your education and your employment history. But these things, although valuable, are in the past and therefore cannot be modified. They are indeed a reflection on your professional career and who you are as a professional, but it ultimately doesn’t sum you up as a person. Summing you up as a person, or finding out what kind of worker you will be, is exactly what interviews/employers are seeking to discover. Therefore, one thing they will need to know about are your interpersonal skills. You may have heard of such skills, but why are they so important?
First of all, what exactly are interpersonal skills? Well, the short version of that question is this: interpersonal skills are interactive skills. They are makes you a good co-worker, or what makes you valuable in the workplace. How you interact with other people is paramount in every job, so therefore an employer will need to know how you manage yourself around other people. There are many different kinds of interpersonal skills, all of which are very important and which can ultimately make you stand out as a professional person. In all jobs, having the brain for the work is one thing and of course is a valuable asset. However, putting all of what you know into use and thus interacting and communicating with people is equally valuable (if not more desirable).
Interpersonal Skills Advice and Why They Are Important
Take a moment to think of what interpersonal skills you think you possess and have perfected. These are the things which you will need to include in your application and talk about in your interview. If by any chance you would like further help with an interview, our site has just what you need. Here, you will find posts on behavioural interview questions and how to prepare for them, as well as guidance on how to conduct a phone interview. We also have ‘how to’ guides on writing the perfect resume, curriculum vitae, resignation letter, cover letter, and much more. In sum, everything you need in regards to writing for an employer can be found on our website. For now, however, let’s dive into interpersonal skills.
Why Do Employers Value Interpersonal Skills So Much?
As mentioned above, you may have the mind for the work, but you may not have the personality for it. In other words, interpersonal skills is all about putting into effect what you know. With experience your interpersonal skills will develop, it does take time to really hone in on these skills, and therefore the more of these skills you have, the more employable you will effectively be.
Say, for example, you are a college graduate from one of the most prestigious universities in the world. You graduated a few months ago, you’re clearly highly educated, and you are now applying for a job that is perfect given what you have studied. Sure, you’re very employable and you have a great chance of getting the job. However, you lack personality, experience, and have never been in such an office situation before. In sum, you haven’t got many interpersonal skills. The employer now has what is effectively a brain and no person. Work can be achieved, but can this person handle speaking to and interacting with other employers? What about interacting with business partners? All in all, this person has half of what is desired.
On the other hand, if the aforesaid person has the qualifications and the experience/interpersonal skills, it’s a no-brainer for the employer. Combining both the mental capabilities along with the physical, personal capabilities which are inherent within interpersonal skills creates the perfect candidate.
Inserting Your Interpersonal Skills Into Your Resume, Curriculum Vitae, etc.
When it comes to writing your resume, CV, and so forth, there will always be ample room for writing about your skills. Often it will be provided within its own unique section. Here it is important to give your potential employer a good insight into your skills. Simply state the interpersonal skill which you believe you possess, and then provide an example or proof of how you possess this skill. For example: “Leadership skills – In the past I lead a marketing team for five years during my time at XYZ company”. This is a short and succinct example of how you can state your valuable interpersonal skill and then back it up with evidence.
Are You Sure You Don’t Mean ‘INTRApersonal Skills’?
Don’t get mixed up! Intrapersonal skills and interpersonal skills are two very different things. The former, intrapersonal skills, is all about how you handle you. Interpersonal skills on the other hand, is how you handle yourself around other people. In other words, intrapersonal is how you self-manage, handle stress, remain organised, and so forth. Interpersonal is how you lead a team, talk to a colleague, and so forth. One is about you within, the other is about you outer.
A List Of Interpersonal Skills To Ponder
As mentioned, there are many different types of interpersonal skills. You can basically think of a word that best describes one of your best features and turn it into a skill. For example, positivity. In this case, positivity or optimism can be moulded into remaining stress free, self-organisation skills, and so on. The following is a list of interpersonal skills to have a look at:
- Listening Skills
- Postive Behavioral Attitude
- Communication (An important one)
- Conflict Management
- Conflict Resolution
- Constructive Criticism (How to receive)
- Customer Service
- Problem Solving
- Public Speaking
- Relationship Management
- Interview Skills
- Leadership (Another important one)
- Nonverbal Communication
- Positive Reinforcement
- Team Building
- Helping Others
Ultimately, when thinking of what interpersonal skills you have, just think of what makes you a good worker. Always remember to then provide some evidence or back it up.