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What is Interpersonal Skills Training?

Mary McMahon
Updated Mar 02, 2024
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Interpersonal skills training is business education designed to improve communication skills with other people. People who take such trainings will learn a variety of communication techniques, in addition to developing assertiveness, negotiation skills, conflict resolution skills, and cultural sensitivity. All of these skills can be useful in a business setting. Seminars providing personal skills training are offered all over the world and the costs vary, depending on the length of the seminar, the trainer, and the setting. Some employers will pay for employees interested in taking such training, as an investment in employee development.

People apply interpersonal skills to a wide variety of interactions, from talking to coworkers about a project to selling a plan to clients. People with good interpersonal skills tend to be more successful in business. They can interact more effectively with coworkers, management and subordinates, in addition to establishing business networking connections more efficiently, landing clients, and retaining existing clients.

Taking an interpersonal skills training course allows people to develop stronger and more consistent interpersonal skills. People who have difficulty in social settings can benefit from such courses, as can people who are changing careers, and people who are interested in cultivating a set of strong skills useful for success in the business world. At the course, people will have an opportunity to practice in a variety of settings and scenarios, applying their skills in an environment where they are not under pressure.

Content at interpersonal skills training can be offered over the course of several hours or days. It usually requires attending classes to interact personally with instructors and other students. Courses designed for specific applications are available, such as interpersonal skills training offered to people who are preparing to travel in a country with a different culture, or trainings designed to help people develop conflict resolution skills to keep their workplaces harmonious.

The quality of such courses varies. Reviews are often available at third party sites to give people an idea of the kind of training offered. It can help to talk to people who have taken interpersonal skills training to see if they have any recommendations or warnings. People may also want to weigh issues like cost of attendance, including food and housing if the class is far from home, when considering which course is most likely to suit their needs. Some training companies will bring classes to the workplace by request; if enough employees are interested and their employers are willing to sponsor them, it may be possible to take interpersonal skills training in the office.

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Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a Practical Adult Insights researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments

By donasmrs — On Nov 15, 2014

@bear78-- Yes, I took a course on interpersonal skills, communication and conflict resolution. If you're concentrating on conflict resolution, the most important things are being impartial, sympathizing with the parties to conflict and trying to find a middle ground.

I don't think it's a problem to put what you learn into practice. It might seem difficult at first, but after a few tries, it does become easier.

Usually though, if the conflict is an office conflict, it might be better to have someone from the outside to intervene and negotiate between the parties. Because it's difficult for people who work at the same place to remain impartial. People tend to take sides but resolving conflict requires that one does not do that. It's important to be objective and understand the grievances of both sides.

By bear78 — On Nov 14, 2014

Has anyone here received interpersonal skills training? What was the most important thing you learned about conflict resolution skills? I'm considering taking a course on this topic but I'm not sure if what I learn will actually be applicable.

By stoneMason — On Nov 13, 2014

The interpersonal skills mentioned in this article aren't only necessary and useful for businessmen, but really any job that requires interacting with people. Of course, people in different fields may need to concentrate a little more on different types of interpersonal skills. But even at the very basic level, if we're working all day in an office with colleagues, managers and employees under us, we have to know how to relate to them correctly.

In my office specifically, I know just how many problems have occurred because of poor communication.

Mary McMahon

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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