Developing the ‘people skills’ mindset

As we all know, whether it’s our colleagues or clients – they are people. Business and life both revolve around people. Products and services are created for people. The entire cycle of economy is centered around people. Therefore developing a ‘people skills’ mindset is imperative for sustained success. Dale Carnegie’s iconic book ‘ How to win friends and influence people’ is the all time bible of ‘people skills’. There are methods to connect with people, better your listening abilities and empathy. Methods which are easy to impliment and make them a part of your mindset and personality. It’s not just bettering your interpersonal skills but adding a complete package of traits that make you a people skills person who is positive, easy to connect and align with. Here are some quick traits to adapt and create a ‘people skills’ mindset.

Deep introspection

The cornerstone of change is deep realization of what’s missing in you and therefore identification of what you need to change in yourself to create the ideal ‘people’s mindset’. The starting point is to genuinely care about others. For everyone, the self is most important. Most of us are born with the ‘me, myself and I’ syndrome. You need to step out of this mindset, to be able to understand others with your sense of empathy and therefore be able to connect more meaningfully and naturally. But there is more than this to do!

The mind is like a parachute. It works best when open

Remember, develop a personality which invites others to connect with you. Be open, make others comfortable. Be friendly and positive. Just this behavior can develop your people skills by leaps and bounds! By being open you trigger openness and create an environment of free flowing formal and informal conversations. Conversations lubricate interactions and build friendships and relationships. When you interact with a closed mind you literally close the front door of your house to any visitors!

The most important part of communication is listening

If you really observe around you, you will find that most of the people listen to reply but do not listen to understand. This is because we are so full of our self and cannot go beyond that. The most important part of communicating is listening and responding. Not just responding to reply. We need to raise the bar here from passive listening to active listening. This simple step can create invisible bridges between you and other people, a very critical element of developing people skills.

Positive body language

When you communicate you communicate with your body language. This means it’s not limited to what you say and how you say it, your tone of voice and how you speak. Your whole body talks. You may be saying something but your gestures, mannerisms and body language may be saying something else. This subject is a science of it’s own. Negative body language creates communication barriers and impacts your people skills. So be conscious and develop positive body language to get ahead, get accepted and get followed.

Speak well to be understood

Actually we create content when we converse and communicate for others to consume and engage. Can you imagine a bestseller written by hand in a bad handwriting? If you cannot read, you cannot comprehend. The same way if you do not communicate clearly, let alone appreciate you, people will not be able to understand what you are saying! So speak clearly, form your words and speak well. Better still evolve to become a good speaker. People will look forward to hearing you

In addition to all of this, be humane (read one of my previous articles on ‘the humane mindset’). Smile more, genuinely care more. It’s easy to develop a ‘people skills’ mindset. And once you have developed this mindset, there is no stopping you from achieving success!

“Leadership is about persuasion, presentation and people skills” Shiv Khera


The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Amitesh Banerjee
Amitesh Banerjee is a passionate result driven professional with three decades of multi-country, multi-domain experience in Communications, Marketing & Advertising. He has worked for reputed organisations in leadership positions including JWT, ITC, New Zealand Dairy Board, Seychelles Marketing Board, Perfect Relations, Genesis Burson Marsteller, Adfactors PR among others.
Amitesh’s last assignment was with the Della Group and now works as Senior Consultant Strategy & Public Relations, Hill & Knowlton Strategies India. Amitesh is a proud catalyst of positive change.

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