24 Effective ways to Improve Interpersonal Communication Skills

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Interpersonal communication skills involve both personal as well as professional communication skills. These collections of abilities enable a person to interact optimistically and work efficiently with others. In a corporate environment, the need of developing interpersonal skills is very essential. Through this, the leaders come to know about how an employee can handle the organizational disputes in a constructive manner. In this article we focus on Simply and Effective ways to improve Interpersonal communication skills to interact optimistically, work efficiently with others at workplace

Interpersonal Communication Skills

The communication skills are needed to interact with one another that include both oral as well as the written communication skills. These skills enable a person to share information, ideas, and feelings to transfer meaning among them. Whereas, the interpersonal communication skills are made to use when there are different priorities and expectations that further generate conflicts, misunderstandings and arguments. For example, in a professional scenario, uncooperative behaviours like withholding the information or not meeting the requirements may generate some issues. To solve these issues, one needs to have effective interpersonal skills.

Interpersonal Communication Skills

There must be a three tier communicational approach to inculcate the desired interpersonal communication skills. First, the Ethos, they make out for the ethics. These are the underlying sentiments that states the beliefs, customs, or practices of a person, group or society. Second is the Pathos, which means empathy. The empathy stands for the feelings, or understanding that you have for the person who is speaking to you. Next are the Logos, they mean the logics or the ways that we make into use while communicating or simply our presentation method.

Some of the interpersonal skills that a person must possess include:

Verbal Communication

Clarity is the most important thing that is needed in the verbal communication. For this, one should think efficiently and speak thoughtfully. In a verbal communication, when we are asked about something or when we have to give a response to something, then rather than just juggling out the answers, one must stay calm and in a very thoughtful and clear manner, answer that very question.

Non - Verbal Communication

This section is often ignored. However, in the interpersonal skills, it is vital to be efficient non-verbally also. These skills include the standing posture, voice, gestures and most importantly the eye contact. All this reveals about your attitude and the way you converse. A person having good non-verbal skills, can surely converse verbally more efficiently.

Listening

The communication loop is incomplete without the listening process. An effective listener can only be an effective communicator. In-fact, listening is such a bona-fide field, that it is included in the most popular theoretical theories too. A person, who listens effectively to another person, knows even the minute details of the process. Thus, it becomes feasible for both the communicator as well as the listener to communicate with each other in a proper manner. It is a vital component of the interpersonal skills.

Questioning

Questioning is not merely a device for gaining information, but it also a great way to start a conversation. The more questions a person asks another, the more he will get to know about the topic. Moreover, it is a great way to start a conversation. It shows the interest and can spontaneously draw someone’s attention to your desire to listen to them.

Manners

With good manners, interpersonal skills come on its own. In every sphere of life, it is necessary to show good manners. Just a little understanding of etiquettes and a person can win over the other person’s heart thereby developing good communication skills. The manner in which, a person interacts, to an extent tells us about the capability of the person.

Problem Solving

In today’s era, rarely a day goes without any problem. The person must be capable enough to solve problem in such a way that it does not cause any more chaos. Problem solving is a concrete area of interpersonal skills as they identify that how can one handle the problem and in what best possible way the issue can be tackled.

Social Awareness

It is very important to be socially aware. When we are in a dedicated project, we often get involved into it so much that we neglect the other person’s social problems or issues. It is important too. Because only a person who has complete social awareness can bring up more opportunities.

Self Management

Self-management accounts to control over our emotions, that is needed in a situation where we have to keep these out and concentrate on what is going into action. Some of the emotions that need to self-managed are anger, frustration, confusion etc.

Accountability and Responsibility

Responsibility and accountability go hand in hand. A person must be responsible enough to tackle any task or situation. Likewise, must be accountable for what the person has done or performed. Like a conflict occurs, where you have done the mistake, then it is not important just to admit the mistake but also to give the reason and the way to tackle it soon. This makes a person with better interpersonal communication skills.

Assertiveness

This requires standing up for what you believe. The person needs to forthright about his needs and wants, still keeping in mind the other person’s needs also. Developing this, gives good understanding that each person’s rights, wants and desires are as important as the other. The interpersonal skills of a person thus, tell a lot about him. A person who has good interpersonal skills follows certain principles that are of utmost concern in this regard.

These principles include:

Treat each other with respect

Anyone would love to communicate with you if and only if you treat him or her with regard. It can be achieved in a way that we just focus on the happier things, instead of complaining about others and wasting time as well as energy.

Do not interrupt one another

To make our conversations more worthwhile and interesting, it is better to focus on what we say and the manner in which we are communicate things rather than giving attention to what others are saying wrong and interrupting them repeatedly.

Have the right to pass

It is not necessary always that we have to or we should do some work. We must know that at times, when we are not capable to do we must pass it on to the other person who is much more effective in doing that task without any hesitation.

Do not volunteer others

Recognizing the importance of others is very much important. The interpersonal communication skills have a vital principle that tells us how to treat others with equal importance and choose the language of their choice to communicate with them rather than our own choice.

Speak only for ourselves

We must make only the accurate statements in our conversation process, rather than thinking that we can speak for others too. This saves us from the unnecessary resistance.

Speak, but not for too long

Speaking something that is necessary is important rather than taking a huge amount of time and giving a speech of what is not otherwise needed. This also makes the other person interested in our talk and hence he/she listens effectively.

Challenge behaviour and not person

One must not oppose the person directly for what he is saying but can talk about the topic that the person is conversing. This makes an impression that person is not being offensive and have good interpersonal communication skills.

Respect with confidence

Means developing a feeling of trust, safety, and in some cases intimacy by valuing what is important to the other person. This shows person respects everyone and hence has better interpersonal skills.

It is ok to make mistakes

It is not always possible that one is right. One may make mistakes and that should be acceptable. It is only after making mistakes that a person learns to do better. We are not robots who will perform everything accurate and perfect. These principles thus make a person efficient in the interpersonal skills.

Tips to improve the Interpersonal Skills

We communicate in order to be acquainted, share our emotion with others, share emotions, persuading others to understand our views or build relationships. The interpersonal communication skills, is the most important ingredient in any relationship be it personal, social or professional. Better relations are nurtured by open, clear and sensitive communication. That is why its essential to have good interpersonal communication skills. Some of the ways to be good and improve the interpersonal skills include:

Focus on the message

Always think and plan before you speak. Decide the goal behind what you exactly want to deliver, which is to persuade, to inform, to direct or something else. Have complete knowledge about the audience that is going to listen to your message. Be sure that the message is precise and concise. Moreover, your message must be delivered in a polite manner so that the people listening to your message do not get bored and offensive about what you are saying.

Widen the listeners attention

It is necessary to grab listener’s attention. These small things make bigger impact. Like, before giving a speech if one says that, “What I am about to say now, can save your life”. Now, this will catch the listener’s attention and drive him towards you to know more about the topic. Another vital thing is, the person must deliver the topic keeping in mind the listener’s perspective.

Penetrate the barriers

Barriers to communication make the communication completely ineffective. Like if, a person wants to tell the listeners about a major fire disaster that occurred last night. In addition, what he says is, “That a fire broke out, in the area last night.” However, it does not specify that there was a huge disaster. So instead of speaking like this, the person would have explained a bit in detail that would have given a clear picture of what has happened. These pose as barriers when the information speaker wants to convey does not reach the listeners the same way that it is needed to be.

Listen Actively

Whether it is interpersonal communication or any other listening is the mainframe of all communication processes. People often confuse between hearing and listening. Hearing is something when a person hears what he is told to, but he is not sure that he has also understood it. While, listening is something when a person listens and completely understands what was to be told.

These were the key factors that a person must have to inculcate good interpersonal communication skills. Some other forms by which a person can improve in this area are like seeking out the opportunities to lead, which means finding different opportunities that will allow communicating more and making more decisions, which will enhance the skills. Another, a person can take up a speech course whereby he can build in confidence and side by side learns to communicate coherently. Or a way out is to rehearse with some recording tool.

By making a recording of what you spoke, lets you listen to yourself and identify the areas where you were wrong. Moreover, you can observe your body language, the voice of tone, and what other factors that cause you to communicate badly or inefficiently. An interesting option can be, to take up an acting class; this allows you to communicate with a large number of people from various backgrounds. Because acting is one such field, that lets a person perform on the stage in a manner that is either appreciated or denied by the audience. In addition, one must take it positively and try to improve on the areas of concern.

Thus, improving on these areas can help us in developing our skills largely. The interpersonal skills hence, are the life skills that we use every day to communicate and interact with people in a way that is more effective.