Social skills can simply be described as skills that help one to interact amicably with others. Since we interact with people on a daily basis, be it at home, in business or at the workplace, it is important to have good social skills. The benefits of having good social skills are immense and will help in strengthening relationships in all areas. Here are some of the benefits of having good social skills:
- Reduces Cases Of Conflict
Having social skills reduces the cases of conflict in any relationship. In an office set up, when workmates have good social skills, they are able to work well together and deliver smoothly on the products and services offered by the company. In the case of a business, customers get excellent service and there are fewer cases of complaints. In the home setting, there is more peace and harmony between family members when social skills are embraced.
- Greater Opportunities For Jobs
These days, new industries are born and employers are looking for different sets of talents. When a company conducts interviews for a job vacancy, they will generally look for those who have good social skills. Research has shown that even though a candidate may have good academic qualifications, if he or she has poor social skills, then it will be counterproductive since there will be constant conflict at the workplace. Those who have good social skills are more likely to get the job after the interview.
- Faster growth for the business
If the employees of a business have good social skills, then this means that the customers will be treated very well. This will lead to the growth of the customer base and eventually to the faster growth of the business.
- Better efficiency at the workplace
Good social skills among employees creates a positive atmosphere where the workers can thrive and become more efficient in fulfilling the vision of the company. Each employee is eager to perform his or her own tasks well, and is also willing to collaborate with other staff members to ensure that all other tasks are completed within the stipulated time frame.
- More peaceful home atmosphere
Social skills are also applicable in family relationships. Those family members who practise these skills have the benefit of enjoying a more peaceful and harmonious atmosphere in at home.
From the above points mentioned, it is clear that social skills are important because they are relevant to every situation in one’s life. It is advisable that Singaporeans endeavour to embrace these skills.
Below are 10 key social skills that everyone should strive to have:
Communication is a social skill that can generally be broken down into two major parts; verbal and non-verbal communication. Those who exercise the skill of verbal communication should speak clearly and patiently to the listener. The communicator should use pleasant language and should be ready to answer any questions comprehensively to the point where the listener has fully understood. For non-verbal communication, the communicator should show the listener some positive body language. This includes maintaining good eye contact, and giving a pleasant facial expression that shows genuine interest in the conversation.
Another good social skill is cooperation. In a company setup, this would mean cooperating fully with fellow employees. Each employee should work with the others to achieve the company goals within the required timelines. There should also be some flexibility by all employees to assist those who may be challenged so that they all deliver the desired results as a team.
This is a social skill that especially needs to be used by those who deal directly with customers in a business, or those who are managers in the human resource department of an organisation. The people in these positions should have an attitude of empathy and should actually strive to solve the problem at hand with a lot of concern, whether it is a customer who needs help or an employee. This leaves the recipient feeling satisfied and well taken care of.
It is important for one to learn how to listen patiently. This is a social skill that is needed very much today. When interacting with fellow employees, one should be careful not to interrupt when another employee is expressing his or her views. It is important for one to listen actively and show genuine concern for the views of others. This will help each person to feel valued. The art of listening should be used in all scenarios, but especially by those who are in customer care services.
5. Show respect
This is another social skill that is very important. One should learn to show respect to everyone, regardless of their position in the company. This can be done using polite language; words like please and thank you should be used very often. This creates a positive atmosphere in the workplace or even in the home.
6. Be assertive
Being assertive is very different from being aggressive. Communicating a point in a passionate and firm way is different from overstepping the boundaries and becoming argumentative. One should be assertive in a clear and polite way, but when it develops into a fiery argument, then this is a sign that it has become aggression. One should be careful to differentiate between the two.
7. Take criticism positively
There will always be some kind of criticism at some point in everyone’s life. This criticism could be positive or malicious. If it is malicious, one should handle it patiently and remain level-headed. It may be better not to give any input on the criticism given so as to avoid undue conflict and arguments. In addition to this, it is important for one to analyse the criticism directed towards him or her with an attitude of humility because part of it could actually be helpful.
8. Maintain a positive attitude
This is another valuable social skill. It is important for one to maintain a positive attitude towards his or her work. It has been proven that people who have a positive attitude tend to progress quickly. It is also true that a positive attitude is contagious and therefore, it is important that one implement this skill at the workplace. This will encourage employees to continue delivering results even in difficult circumstances.
9. Be teachable
No one can claim to know everything; even those in managerial positions need to keep learning. Being teachable with an attitude of humility is very important. If all the employees in the team are teachable and willing to take instructions with a good attitude, then everyone in the team ends up delivering results and the organisation benefits as a whole.
10. Utilise positive traits
This skill involves utilising one’s natural positive traits. Some positive traits that people have include being a peacemaker, being generous, being patient and being creative amongst others. One should be glad to offer his or her positive traits to the organisation without necessarily expecting anything extra. If each member decides to use his or her positive traits for the benefit of the team, it will bring about positive development for the organisation.
In conclusion, the above social skills are very valuable in developing meaningful and long lasting relationships both in the workplace and at home. It is advisable for Singaporeans to make an effort to learn and use them.