Skill Building: Interpersonal Skills

Interpersonal Skills

Interpersonal skills refer to your ability to have confidence in yourself, speak your mind, and explain your point convincingly. It is also about understanding other people’s points of view and comparing them with your own.

Peers are people who are similar to you, because you have the same age, background, education, community, school… Talking to peers about issues you think are important, for example the issues raised on this page, is a critical part of developing interpersonal skills. You may also want to do this because you want your peers to take action along with you.

If you want to discuss difficult issues with peers, you can use some techniques, because you already have some things in common which you can use to talk to them.

Think about how you formulate your message:

  • Explain them exactly what you want to achieve and why it is important

  • What do you have in common? Why should you both care?

  • Be honest about your intentions, don’t tell lies

  • Understand the person you are talking to, what does s/he find important?

How to communicate effectively:

  • Ask your peers for their advice and opinions. This will make them feel valued and important, and more likely to see your standpoint.

  • Make them part of what you want to achieve; of the project

Be creative in your communication!

Use the appropriate tools. There are so many tools to use like social media platforms; leaflets, brochures and posters; discussions or group sessions; other interactive, game-based sessions…, but be aware that there are some messages you can send on Twitter, others that should be sent via email, and then those that need a face-to-face conversation. Using the right medium to send a message can make all the difference in the world when it comes to how your message will be received.

Take action! Think about an issue that is important to you, and talk to your peers about why this is important and why they should care too!