"Conversation is an art which a man has all mankind for his competitors, for it is that which all are practising every day while they live." Ralph Waldo Emerson

Having read about the numerous benefits of interpersonal skills after reading that everyone has the chance of developing their leadership ability, you surely will be looking for ways to develop your interpersonal skills. Well, what if you could develop your interpersonal skills online?

This sounds like one of the most ludicrous ideas ever. How can you develop your ability to speak to someone else when using an online medium means not reacting with people face to face? Well, the internet is one of the most convenient platforms to engage in learning almost anything. There are many ways that you can use the online environment to better understand what interpersonal skills are and to advance your interpersonal skills. From online blog posts to online courses, there are a variety of methods that you could leverage to better your interpersonal skills. However, before we get into the ways of improving your interpersonal skills, think about why you would want to better your interpersonal skills in the first place. Have you thought about it? Developing your interpersonal skills is a form of personal development and personal development means growth in all aspects of your life.

Aside from the online method for developing your interpersonal skills, there are other ways that you can develop your interpersonal skills. Here is your guide to developing your interpersonal skills.

sticky notes
Use sticky notes to remind you why personal development is important. Source| Unsplash

Why Should You Develop Your Interpersonal Skills Online?

"You're talking about a younger generation, Generation Y, whose interpersonal communication skills are different from Generation X. The younger generation is more comfortable saying something through a digital mechanism than face to face." Erik Qualman

With more and more companies turning to online working channels, it is inevitable that the same soft skills that you would need to display in the workplace are also needed when you are interacting with organizational members online. While the form of interacting with work colleagues may change, the mannerism and professionality with which you communicate with work members must remain the same.

Let's face it, you have been learning communication and social skills from the day you were born. You may even feel that you have excellent communication skills. However, the question that you should be asking yourself is how often do you stand out from the crowd at your workplace because of your communication skills?

If you struggle with answering the abovementioned question, chances are that you could use some assistance with personal skills development. You won't realize it but with the humdrum of daily tasks, there may be barely any time during your workday to formulate interpersonal relationships and communicate with people in your organization. Learning all about the very essence of these soft skills may help you to stop your tasks for a few minutes and pay attention to work colleagues creating a more pleasant work environment.

Create a better workplace
Work on your interpersonal skills to create a better work environment for yourself and others Source: Unsplas| Green Chameleon

Plus when it comes to working from home situations, you need to know exactly how to properly interact with your work colleagues online in a way where you don't seem to come across as rude and aloof. Since the online sphere seems far less personal than interacting face-to-face, you could still learn how to make an impression and stand out via your online interactions.

Irrespective of the method of communication you use, interpersonal skills are:

  • Being able to communicate well with others whilst understanding their point of view as well
  • Having the skills needed to cooperate and work collaboratively with others
  • Being able to negotiate and handle any conflict that may arise. Conflict resolution skills are core when it comes to working collaboratively with others.
  • Having not only the necessary communication skills but the needed listening skills as well

So How Do You Develop Your Interpersonal Skills Online?

The internet allows you to gain the necessary soft skills that you need to make an impression in your workplace by offering you a variety of online courses. It is here that you can attend live online lectures or simply work at your own pace with a video tutorial. An added benefit of trying out these online courses is that many of the courses offer a free certificate once the course is complete or you will pay the bare minimum for certification once the course is complete. A certificate proves you are continuing on your personal development and lifelong learning journey and a certificate does look attractive when it is attached to your CV. It is also a pull factor that may draw potential employers to hire you.

Check Udemy or Hyperli for Emotional Resilience Courses

Up until fairly recently, most people utilized Udemy to access training videos that dealt with personal development and the development of communications skills.  Udemy remains a market leader in providing easy to access courses and Udemy certification still proves to make a considerable impression on current employers and potential future employers.

Hyperli also offers vouchers for courses from worldwide online universities. The price of most personal development courses are fairly reasonable and most include certification as well at no additional cost. There are a variety of courses that deal with issues such as emotional resilience, dealing with workplace stress and building leadership qualities within.

The course offered via universities are mostly self-paced courses that allow you to learn through videos and interactive channels such as email communication with lecturers.

Complete an online course
Make the most of free online courses to personally develop yourself. Source: Unsplash

Visit Various Blogs to Read Up on the Value of Having Good Interpersonal Skills

The internet is filled with opportunities for learning and you should make the most of all the free resources offered. There are many blog posts that deal with issues related to social and emotional intelligence which are a key component of interpersonal skills.

If you are a teacher and work in a school, you would realize the value of having good interpersonal skills. You can only formulate better relationships with your students if you showcase positive social and emotional skills. As a teacher, if you are composed and in control of your emotions then only can you mould your learners in a positive way too.

The South African College of Applied Psychology produces blog content that deals with aspects such as social and emotional learning and visiting their blog regularly could prove to be highly beneficial for you.

The Just Africa Life Skills blog is another online platform that allows you to learn how to deal with daily stresses and conflicts in the workplace through the blogposts that they publish. Reading various perspectives about developing better interpersonal skills and the skills necessary to allow you to thrive in the workplace will enable you to apply these ideas when you are actually in the workplace setting.

Search for Hands-on Approaches to Learning Interpersonal Skills

If you are seeking a more hands-on personal approach to learning interpersonal skills and you are someone who sees the benefit of good old fashion in-person training, the online sphere can simply be used to find the right courses for you. Devote any spare time to searching for available courses that you could possibly attend. Read the reviews of courses to find out which course will best suit your needs.

You may stumble across institutions that offer face-to-face training such as the Business Optimization Training Institute that offers Interpersonal Skills Building courses throughout the country.  You may be surprised at how well a traditional course will work to help you devise just the right strategy to formulate and establish constructive relationships with managers and work colleagues.

Interpersonal Skills Development Training

some people thrive with face-to-face interaction
Training whilst interacting with others is still a good way to develop your interpersonal skills. Source: Unsplash

While you were taught how to excel academically in the workplace during your years of schooling and in university, certain educational opportunities were overlooked in these institutions. You were never actually told what the correct social etiquette is when communicating with someone. While your rude and insulting behaviour may often have gotten you detention at school, you were never really guided as to how to improve upon this behaviour.

Sometimes you just need to take a break from mainstream learning and try something different. Mindvalley is a transformational self and personal development learning platform fixated with inculcating people with skills that they may not get anywhere else. They offer mentoring, courses and even free courses which means taking a few hours daily to complete their courses may be holistically beneficial thereafter. You would be surprised at how much you can develop your soft skills just by enrolling in a Mindvalley course.

There is also another way that you can get personal career coaching. Perhaps you are looking for a private coach who will work with you to bring out the best person that you can be in your workplace. If you are in search of a private coach, you would be delighted to know that Superprof offers career coaching services as well. All the coaches on the Superprof site have exciting professional backgrounds and they are all focused on working with their tutees to bring out the very best in all their tutees. You may feel that you could use someone to personally mentor you and to keep a check that you are actually applying all the knowledge that you have learnt about interpersonal skills in your work setting as well.

There are many ways to seek the training that you need to better your interpersonal skills so it is up to you to choose a method that you feel will be beneficial. If you are searching for ways to personally develop yourself, you have already made your first step towards a successful new outlook on life. You have also taken the first few steps towards being a new, more approachable and empathetic you in the workplace.

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Laila is an enthusiastic English educator and a fun-filled freelance writer. She has accomplished her dream of getting her first book published and has managed to write over 1 000 000 words since beginning her freelance career. In her free time, she is a travel blogger who explores all South Africa has to offer.