Interpersonal communication skills are the behaviours that we exhibit when we are interacting with others around us. Whether we are trying to maintain relationships in our personal or professional lives, good interpersonal communication skills are crucial. These skills can help us effectively interact with those around us to build commonalities, create understanding, and ensure good teamwork.
Why Are Good Interpersonal Communication Skills So Important?
Interpersonal communication skills can help you build and maintain relationships with others while developing and growing as a person. Within a workplace, communication excels between individuals with good connections. Here are some vital advantages of good interpersonal skills:
Builds team dynamic and spirit.
When team members can communicate effectively, they can build a healthy dynamic with effective and time-efficient back-and-forth interactions. This ability reinforces honesty, integrity and trust between team members. This, in turn, promotes a friendly and cooperative environment for employees, which will create a sense of belonging and morale.
Sets you apart
Professionals can stay ahead of the competition by combining good technical and professional skills with good communication skills. Building successful, stable, and long-lasting interpersonal connections requires the capacity to communicate effectively with colleagues, employees, and customers. When you can communicate effectively, it will also set you apart from team members who will view you as someone who has good people skills and is charismatic and likeable.
These skills can help collaboration with others, provide guidance, support and reassurance, and convey information effectively. Understanding these skills will also enable you to read a room, understand how your actions affect others, and help you fully grasp what others are trying to tell you. Not only can clear communication of goals and agendas help project output, but it also boosts professionalism and team morale and accelerates conflict resolution.
What Are The Most Important Interpersonal Communication Skills?
Verbal communication skills
- Oral communication
This is any communication that occurs when we are speaking. Your choice of words, tone of voice, speaking pace and volume can all contribute to the message you are conveying. This is the type of communication that is used the most in everyday life. Effective oral communication can also be beneficial in the workplace as it can help you become more likeable, relatable and credible.
Nonverbal communication skills
Written communication includes all forms of communication that take place using writing or typing. In the workplace, most written communication takes place on the computer, i.e., emails, memos, notes or documents. Word choice isn’t the only thing that conveys meaning in written communication, as emojis, symbols, and punctuation can also say a lot about the message you are trying to send. This type of communication is especially important for remote working environments. If your writing does not convey the correct message or has too many grammatical errors, it can be detrimental to your reputation and work life.
When you speak, do you use many hand gestures? What about your facial expressions, posture and eye contact? All of these things can convey a message to others. When your behaviour and actions line up, it increases your credibility and helps others develop a positive attitude towards you. Reading the body language of others can also help you understand the meaning behind the words of others.
Along with effectively communicating your message, it is vital that you can effectively interpret the message of others. By listening to what others are saying, you can respond appropriately with verbal and nonverbal cues, thereby showing empathy and understanding. If others feel like you are actively paying attention and listening to them, they will have a positive experience and enjoy interacting with you. Show others that you are listening by using both verbal and nonverbal cues such as nodding your head, asking questions and responding appropriately.
How Can You Improve Your Interpersonal Communication Skills?
The only way to master strong interpersonal skills is through consistent practice and improvement. These skills may come easy to some, but it might take a bit more conscious effort, patience, and self-awareness for others. By knowing what interpersonal communication is and researching these important skills, you can build your skills and become a more effective communicator in no time.