This post highlights 13 essential interpersonal skills for managers to take a management career to the next level. We all know managers with less than acceptable interpersonal skills for leadership. As you undoubtedly know, that often leads to a challenging or toxic work environment.
As the Web3 demand for talented professionals increases, it’s becoming harder for a hiring manager to distinguish from top competing candidates. After technical skills and qualifications, the most important criteria are interpersonal skills.
What is the Definition of Interpersonal Skills?
Those individuals with strong interpersonal skills are typically confident, calm and emotionally intelligent. They have excellent communication skills, can manage emotions, and interact and work collaboratively with others verbally and non-verbally. Interpersonal skills are often described as soft skills.
Hiring managers seek candidates with good interpersonal skills who can create and build good relationships with co-workers and customers. The positive interpersonal skills of a manager can significantly contribute to creating a healthy workplace culture of cooperation, collaboration, and productivity.
In addition, good management can go a long way towards increasing employee happiness and job satisfaction, which helps improve retention and engagement rates in the organisation.
Why are Interpersonal Skills Development Important?
Your new management role could be office-based or remote. Whichever it is, getting the best out of a team requires interpersonal skills. Whether navigating workplace politics or managing fractious dynamics within a team, interpersonal skills can mean the difference between the success or failure of a project.
Even in the most technical roles, such as blockchain development or cybersecurity, employees must still interact with the team working on a project. A fractious environment where a manager fails to instil trust and confidence in their team can create epic problems if communication breaks down.
In addition, having the right interpersonal skills to put on a resume can help your CV stand out from others with similar hard skills and qualifications. Organisations seek an effective manager who can help create harmony and productivity in the workplace and help improve organisational structure and growth.
As a leader, you are often the face of the company to your team. As humans tend to lead and follow by example, a manager’s interpersonal skills can help positively channel a team’s energy and focus.
Job descriptions typically list interpersonal skills for managers in order of importance. Add these keywords to your resume, tailoring the information relevant to the job. During the interview, hiring managers look for evidence of the interpersonal skills required for the working environment.
Top 13 Interpersonal Skills for Managers
The following list is not in order of importance, although communication skills are primarily vital for any management position: –
Skill #1: Excellent Communication
Good communication involves a blend of practical understanding of what people are and are not saying. In addition, it involves active listening skills and an empathetic approach to everyone, including employees from diverse backgrounds.
It’s also necessary to understand how to manage neurodivergent employees. For instance, many high-functioning ADHD employees contribute significantly to the workplace but struggle with some communication aspects.
Developing interpersonal skills for managers helps to communicate with customers, shareholders, founders, co-workers, and colleagues. In addition, it’s important to note that good communication is not only about your words. It is also dependent on tone and context.
The most effective managers are empathetic and adopt a benevolent leadership style. They enable team members to be authentic and autonomous in their work but remain supportive leaders for guidance when needed, navigating challenging personality dynamics compassionately.
How to improve communication skills: –
- Read books on body language: A great book is What every body is saying by Joe Navarro, an ex-FBI agent
- Observe people’s body language, facial expressions, voice tone, gestures, and eye contact. Listen to their words and see if you can judge if their behaviour is congruent with what they say
- Become self-aware of your triggers: For instance, do certain personality types cause you to feel irritated and less empathetic?
- Practice conflict resolution and negotiation skills at home and work. You’ll be surprised how quickly you can hone your communication skills
- Concise communication: Always clarify that the other person understands your meaning
Gather as much feedback as possible regarding your communication skills, both verbal and non-verbal. Monitor things like eye contact, facial expressions, personal space, and posture by standing in front of a mirror or getting someone to record a video.
You may be surprised at the low awareness of your actions and physical quirks. Another tip is to watch a TV programme with the sound off and see if you can determine what the characters are saying and the tone of the conversation.
Skill #2: Management and Leadership Skills
People management is never easy, but some managers make it seem effortless. The better your interpersonal skills, the easier it becomes. It’s a balance of adapting to each relationship in context, excellent organisational skills, and the ability to delegate.
Robert, a young manager, joined a new company in his first role. At first, he struggled because the team members were significantly older than him and had more experience in the industry. Robert’s self-confidence waned as he realised his team did not take him seriously because of his age and inexperience.
Subsequently, Robert developed an overbearing manner to try and compensate for the team’s disdain. After a month, productivity declined, and his team refused to comply with his micromanagement and reported him to human resources.
After that, the company took Robert under their wing and committed to management training for six months. An arranged mediation took place with the team for open discussion, and mutual respect became established after a while.
Robert was good at his job, but the lack of team support and the knock on his self-confidence threw him off balance. Thankfully, he worked for a great company that supported employees transitioning into new roles.
The best managers do the following: –
- Delegate tasks
- Are well organised and can organise others
- Recognise and utilise employee strengths
- Are unafraid to ask for help if needed
- Do not micromanage a team
The best leaders inspire others to do their best. They lead by example and act with integrity and authenticity. Even if you have the manager title, you can become a great leader and encourage your team to aspire to new heights. If you wish to hone your leadership skills, ask the organisation if they will fund a training course.
Skill #3: Teamwork
Great teamwork involves understanding your team so that each person is assigned tasks that complement their skills and capabilities. Managers with excellent interpersonal skills can lead, motivate, and encourage people to want to do their best. They reward excellence and actively want a team to succeed without taking the glory for themselves on completing a project.
It takes confidence to lead a team; practising and making mistakes is the best way to develop these skills. Take responsibility for your errors, and do not blame the team for inefficient results if you are the cause.
Skill #4: Decision Making
Making timely decisions is part of being an effective manager, but every decision involves the cooperation of others. They need to know when, how and why you made the decision. Ideally, consulting the team during the research stage is an excellent way to build trust and cooperation.
Work on developing critical thinking skills using logic and problem-solving principles. In addition, always consider the consequences of a decision. Contemplate how it might impact others and, if possible, gain additional opinions before making the final decision.
The best way to learn how to make effective decisions is to practice and look at each decision from all possible angles.
Skill #5: Conflict Management and Resolution
One of the essential interpersonal skills for managers is navigating and resolving conflict within a team. Good managers are diplomatic, calm, and assertive negotiators. They understand the value of compromise and are unattached to being right.
There are numerous online courses for conflict management, negotiation skills and conflict resolution. If you think it’s an area of weakness, ask your employee to fund training for you, as it will significantly add value to your contributions.
You may need to defend your views, decisions, or team opinions. If you can learn to do this dispassionately and respectfully, it will become one of the most valuable interpersonal skills to add to your resume.
Skill #6: Adaptability
Rigid thinking and behaviour are exhausting for you and anyone that meets you. Managers with adaptable attitudes are highly valuable in the Web3 workplace. Many Web3 projects are fast-paced, and things can change in an instant.
Practice the ability to change direction without missing a beat. At first, change can feel uncomfortable, but in time, it becomes easier. Organisations greatly appreciate managers with an adaptable approach.
Skill #7: Receptiveness to Feedback
It’s not always easy to hear feedback. Some employees struggle with criticism, and others are uncomfortable hearing praise.
As a manager, you must be receptive to feedback as it can help you develop your career. The easiest way to accept feedback is to take it as a learning experience, as there are always ways to improve.
If you receive negative feedback, get clarity on the situation, the actions needed and the ultimate result. I
f you are appraising a team member, the same applies. If you are pleased with their work, tell them exactly what you liked about it, such as, “I liked how accurate and clear the data was in your presentation, Emma.”
Skill #8: Professionalism
Always treat people with respect. Become the face of the company in every interaction, representing values such as integrity. It means taking pride in your daily work, dressing and acting appropriately in every situation.
Encourage your team to behave professionally by leading the way and monitoring and addressing individual behaviour as needed. Your team should respect management, colleagues and customers, maintaining a professional approach in each interaction.
Skill #9: Dependability
Dependability aligns with trust building. Do you do what you say you will do on time? Are you accountable for your actions, and can your team count on you to support them in challenging situations?
A dependable manager encourages an open and honest culture and doesn’t create drama in the workplace.
Dependability may seem like a boring personal attribute, but it’s a quality often underestimated in the workplace. With so many employees feeling disengaged from work, teaming with a dependable manager can help rebuild passion for their jobs, increase engagement and raise retention rates.
Skill #10: Patience
We have an attention span below that of a goldfish, and as our world speeds up, technological advancements in Web3 are like an orb of shiny objects floating into view. Patience skills are rapidly declining, but impatience can lead to mistakes.
Patient managers are typically excellent listeners and do not make hasty decisions. In addition, patience is a crucial factor in negotiating conflict resolution.
Suppose your patience skills require an upgrade, practice listening instead of speaking. Practice deep breathing when facing stressful situations and encourage team members to slow down their thinking. It may seem counter-intuitive, but patient people are often more productive than impatient people.
Skill #11: Self-Confidence
Self-confidence is an attractive quality for anyone in the workplace, but it’s a prerequisite for managers. People often misunderstand confidence because it can be context related.
For example, a manager may demonstrate superb levels of confidence managing a team but fall apart if asked to speak publicly.
The most effective way to improve self-confidence is committing to doing something daily that makes you uncomfortable. Volunteer for public speaking opportunities and accept that it may not go smoothly. However, with practice, you can develop self-confidence in various situations.
Skill #12: Problem-solving
Problem solvers are in high demand in Web3. Indeed most job descriptions for Web3 careers list problem-solving and critical thinking high on the list of requirements.
Sometimes, problem-solving is an innate skill. Learning how to do it by finding situations that call for critical thinking and problem-solving is possible. Ask for opportunities to become involved in exploring solutions and report your results.
Consider all the possibilities for solving a problem, even if they seem weak or inappropriate. Natural problem-solvers quickly navigate a plethora of solutions to find one that works.
Skill #13: Public Speaking
You may not see public speaking in most job descriptions. Still, it’s an acquired skill that can improve your job prospects. Many people are terrified of getting up to speak in front of a crowd, but it’s a learned skill. You can become a skilled public speaker with practice and a little training.
In addition, there is always a demand for public speakers, and it’s well paid, especially in the motivational and leadership fields. If you suddenly find yourself out of work, finding public speaking gigs is an option you could consider.
Bonus Skill: A Positive Attitude
Nothing is more exhausting than working with an individual with a negative attitude. One of the most potent interpersonal skills for managers is a positive attitude and approach to work. Enthusiasm is infectious and can lift a team from the doldrums if a project is struggling to complete.
In interpersonal skills interview questions, hiring managers actively seek candidates with a positive attitude. It dramatically impacts workplace culture and lifts the environment if positivity is the overarching attitude.
We’re not talking about false positivity by pretending that everything is okay when it isn’t. Primarily, it’s about adopting a can-do attitude and not allowing anything to get you down. A positive approach also aids problem-solving because your brain is already seeking positive solutions.
13 Excellent Interpersonal Skills For Managers To Learn 2023
There are undoubtedly more than 13 interpersonal skills for managers. Still, we’ve covered the ones we think will most impact your efficacy as a manager. In addition, if you seek a career change, it helps your resume stand out from dozens of other candidates with the technical skills but may not have the soft skills you have.
If your interpersonal skills need brushing up, training courses, videos and books can help shape your learning. After that, practice until you achieve the level of expertise required.
Meanwhile, if you are considering a career in Web3, it’s a fantastic time to explore transitioning your current skills into this evolving space. We believe 2023 will be an incredible year for those developing the talent to move into a Web3 role.
Contact the CB Recruitment team to discuss your options. We can help you with many career aspects, including a resume assessment to prepare for job applications.