We all love a charmer, whether they are a prince or a princess. There is something about the way they pull you towards them when your initial inclination may be wariness or suspicion. Good communication skills are often listed on person specifications and for good reason. So it pays to pay attention to how these silky sultans show their skills. How can you develop your own charm offensive?
- Skilled communicators work well with colleagues, listen and understand instructions, and can express their opinions with confidence without being aggressive.
- The best communicators are also able to change their style of communication to suit their audience or task at hand - a particularly valuable skill when leading a team, dealing with conflict or persuading others to your way of thinking.
- If you want to improve your communication skills, seek out feedback on what you do well and be willing to learn from constructive criticism.
- You might think that some people are naturally charming, but you can learn to build rapport with others, which is valuable in a variety of situations, from interviews to client meetings. The key is to avoid self-referencing and to shift your mindset from you to the other person.
- We know when we meet someone charming - it's the quality of the attention they give to you. They remember and use your name. They show interest in your world and you as a person, without being creepy, slick or gushing. Their tone is sincere.
- They use humour appropriately. They empathise and show you positive regard. They convey credibility, care and warmth. The result is they engender trust.
If that sounds like a lot to take on, observe how the charming people you admire interact with others and practise in non-work situations to begin with. You’ll soon be teaching snakes to dance.
- David Shindler
About David Schindler
David is author of Learning to Leap, a Guide to Being More Employable and co-author of 21st Century Internships: how to get a job before graduation. An experienced personal and professional development coach and consultant, David helps individuals, teams and organizations build the people skills and mindsets they need now and for the future. He runs the Employability Hub (free resources for students and graduates). Follow David Shindler on Twitter: @David_Shindler