5 Reasons Why It’s Important to Have Good Social Skills

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Co-workers share some social time

5 Reasons Why It’s Important to Have Good Social Skills

Italians are  generally viewed as a very social and outgoing.  Italian society puts great emphasis on communications and  personal relationships and its part of the reason why Italians have a reputation for conveying warmth and openess with both native and non-natives alike.
In turn, here are five advantages associated with having good social skills, gleamed from our Italian American upbringing:
1. More Relationships
Identifying with individuals leads to both relationships and, at times, friendships.   And, as most people know, you can’t advance very far in life without being able to leverage relationships.  Focusing on relationships will help you land a job, advance in your job, make new friends, and give you a better outlook on life (a large social network equals satisfaction with life).
2. Great Communication Skills
Relating with people and being able to work in large groups inadvertently develops one’s communications skills.  After all, you can’t have great social skills without good communications skills and, in my view, being able to convey one’s thoughts and ideas maybe the single most important business skill of all time.
3. More Efficiency
If you’re good with people you can probably avoid being with the people you don’t like very much. For example, many folks dread social interactions because they don’t want to spend time with individuals who do not have similar interests and viewpoints.   So, if you’re at a business get together and don’t want to spend time with Joe because he can’t help you close a particular deal, a great set of social skills will allow you to politely convey that you need to spend time with other folks at the get together.
4. A Better Career
Most worthwhile jobs have a people component and the most lucrative positions often involve a large amount of time spent interacting with employees, media, colleagues, etc.  It’s a rare individual who can isolate himself in his office and still excel in his or her job.  Most organizations are looking for individuals with a particular, tactical, skill set and the ability to influence people to get things done.
5. Increased Quality of Life / Happiness
Getting along with people will open up many personal and career-related doors.  Striking up a conversation at a work related conference may lead to a new job offer with a higher salary or a smile and hello at your local tennis club may grab you a new tennis partner!  It’s also been widely acknowledged that retirees with a large social network have a higher level of happiness during their later years versus depressed and lonely 60-somethings who spend the majority of their free time watching TV with little or no social activities planned.
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  • David

    I never really thought of #3 “If you’re good with people you can probably avoid being with the people you don’t like very much.”
    This is something I have a big problem with. I spend time with people I don’t like, being polite on the outside, but feeling very frustrated inside, and like I am unable to get away. I have trouble either politely excusing myself or telling them to shove off. Any hints?

  • Vincent Scordo

    Hi David,
    I think the key is to spend just enough time with the person you don’t like just to give him or her the impression that you’re not being rude.
    Also, try and find something of interest that the person is saying and then latch on to that and ask a few questions (you basically want to listen and then go for a few questions to engage the person and thereafter politely excuse yourself – spend no more than 5 minutes doing this).
    Good luck.

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  • Simon

    Vin, this is good advice and you bring attention to a need which most people have, to be social and enjoy the company of others.

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  • Linda

    and it just feels good! Your comment about being 60 with no social activities resonates with me. My husband and I are both in our 60s and we do have a really great circle of friends. We meet once a month for dinner – this month is Octoberfest so the theme is German food, But i am also always looking for new opportunities and new activities. We recently began joining the local fire dept for their monthly community potluck and are rewarded with not only hanging out with really great men and women , but they LOVE my baked ziti.

    • http://www.scordo.com/ Scordo.com

      You live well, Linda! I’m sure I’d love your baked ziti, as well!

  • Lexi :)

    ummmm how does this say the reasons that they’re (social skills) important???

    • http://www.scordo.com/ Scordo.com

      Sorry, I don’t understand your question?