Social skills are crucial contributing factors to success. Improving on your social skills is not just about talking to people- it's about effectively getting your message across and understanding your customers' needs so that you can adapt your sales pitch or strategy accordingly.
In the long run, good communication skills will not only benefit your business, but also other aspects of life such as personal relationships, health, education, and more. Try working on these five social skills that will surely help you and your business send the right message!
With fast-paced lives and schedules, it's hard to stay focused on one thing. Sometimes you can't help but think about other tasks while in another social situation. If you're talking to someone, it's best to give them your full attention. Be there physically and mentally, otherwise you'll miss the details and make them feel less valued. Practice active listening and make eye contact. Really try to understand the conversation rather than just listening to reply.
2. Learn to read body language
What you hear is not always what is being meant. Non-verbal communication often reveals our true intentions or meaning. A speaker smiling and looking directly into your eyes can come across differently compared to when the speaker is slouching and looking away. In the same way, our tone of voice can convey different meanings as well. In business, you will meet people from different walks of life. Knowing how to read body language and learning how to control your own allows you to anticipate and prepare for where the conversation is heading.
3. Be collaborative
Teamwork is key to a business’ success. Collaboration entails a series of interrelated skills such as accountability and compassion. Your actions speak volumes. When part of a team, you have to take account of your actions and mistakes. At the same time, you must be able to communicate expectations, so everyone has a clear understanding of your actions. Collaboration can also manifest by following guidelines and set rules so that people know you have self-control. Show discipline in the way you work as it relays that you are reliable and someone who can be trusted.
4. Practice empathy
Having empathy is the ability to relate to others and understand their feelings. Some words don't even need to be said. You may not necessarily agree with their reasons but knowing where they're coming from is the key. When you place yourself in another’s shoes, that's when you're equipped to understand what they care about and therefore, create or offer solutions for their needs.
5. Be authentic
No matter how many people you meet or wherever your business takes you, stay true to yourself. Things may change, but when you have the mental and emotional capacity to stick to your principles, you can be straight up about who you are, what your business is, and what you want to become. Be honest if you have gaps in your knowledge or at work, and work to fix them. Don't act like you know everything or assume; others will appreciate your honesty rather than bank on false assumptions.
These effective social skills are important weapons that you can use in your arsenal not only for business, but for any social setting. Practice makes perfect so the member to continuously hone your skills so they are always sharp and ready to use!