BRUSH UP YOUR SKILLS
Five soft skills that will make you a better professional
Today’s highly competitive world demands more than just the ‘X factor’ from us. Mastering soft skills makes you career-ready and lends you that much-needed edge for sure. Here are simple, but effective ways to ace your social and communication skills.
WORK ON YOUR PRESENTATION
Presentation does not only include your physical appearance and attire, but more importantly, your verbal and non-verbal communication skills. The latter includes posture, gait, body language, gestures, eye and facial expressions. These subtle, yet powerful tools communicate everything you plan to project and are vital components of business and social etiquettes.
SPEND TIME LISTENING
Don’t just hear but listen. This art needs focus and discipline despite distractions. It helps one learn much more than what one would when one talks ten to a dozen.
BUILD UP YOUR VOCABULARY
Ice breakers are important to start a conversation—a gift in the professional world. Pay attention to your vocabulary and general knowledge. Try and learn five new words every day, in any language of your choice. Understand the meaning and apply these in sentences. Read, read and read. Learn, unlearn and re-learn.
BE AWARE OF BODY GESTURES
Eye contact is a powerful tool; maintain eye contact, but avoid staring. In some cultures, not maintaining eye contact is a sign of respect. Read a little before you interact with different cultures. This applies to all modes of non-verbal communication, business and social etiquettes. This principle also applies to handshakes. Should you shake hands? Who makes the first move? The handshake portrays a lot about your personality, keep it ‘to-the-point’ and firm.
FIND A BALANCE BETWEEN THE PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL
Strike a balance between your personal and professional life and between self and others. For this, discipline is important and management is key. Staying positive and motivated is essential. As Swami Vivekananda pointed out, “Everything in excess in life is poison.”