Can good interpersonal skills be taught ?

Parental influence on children in the first 12 years of their lives have a permanent effect. Unfortunately, children come with no user manual. Each child is different from the other. Discuss how to handle emotional and educational needs of your child here.

Can good interpersonal skills be taught ?

Postby tamarind » Sun Feb 01, 2009 8:55 pm

Nowadays most people are expected to work in a team. Good interpersonal skills is very important for a successful career.

I am wondering if a child can be taught to have good interpersonal skills ? Or is it a characteristics that he or she is born with ?

I am not someone with good interpersonal skills. But I know some very nice people in this forum, like buds and EN, and I can imagine that they have very good interpersonal skills in real life too. Care to share how you develop these good skills ? :D

tamarind
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Re: Can good interpersonal skills be taught ?

Postby jedamum » Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:17 pm

tamarind wrote:Nowadays most people are expected to work in a team. Good interpersonal skills is very important for a successful career.

I am wondering if a child can be taught to have good interpersonal skills ? Or is it a characteristics that he or she is born with ?

My ex-coy used to use the term 'X-factor' to describe good interpersonal skills. To me, there are usually 2 category of 'good' interpersonal skills - one is the boss thinks the leader is good but not the co-workers, and the other is the co-workers think the leader is good but the boss doesn't appreciate the leader.
I personally feel that really good interpersonal skills come from the heart. When you are genuine in treating others, those who feel it will appreciate it....just make sure that you do the same in vocalising your efforts to the boss....which some genuinely nice people overlook.
Those people that i know who has really good interpersonal skills tend to have leadership, charisma and can inspired/motivate others with their words, which i feel is largely inborn.
JMHO.

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Re: Can good interpersonal skills be taught ?

Postby shylyn » Sun Feb 01, 2009 11:06 pm

tamarind wrote:Nowadays most people are expected to work in a team. Good interpersonal skills is very important for a successful career.

I am wondering if a child can be taught to have good interpersonal skills ? Or is it a characteristics that he or she is born with ?


Taramind
I strongly agree that gd interpersonal skills is definitely more impt than having gd academic/IQ..cos no matter what, who u know & how u go abt doing things will play an impt role in ur career advancement.
Honestly, I don't think i hv gd interpersonal skills cos I'm not one who can 'charm' people easily..it takes me time to warm up to others..however, in my line, i hv to appear friendly & outgoing..cos its mainly people skills that I'm dealing with..thus, i really find my paper qualifications useless.
Hmm..coming back to whether this is inborn, i guess partly...take my boy for example..as a bb ( cant rem exactly how many months), whenever we scold/raise our voices at him, instead of crying or being scared, he will laugh & giggle at us..till we r unable to control & laugh instead. Now that he is almost 3, he has really good inter personal skills/EQ..he will say his please/thank u (occasional reminders from us), mixes easily with everyone (toddlers his age to adults)..on the whole, very likeable to everyone who sees him..not sure whether this is inborn though. I rem my hub saying, shortly after i gave birth, that people who was born on that day, has good people relations. I guess, i can only confirm when my boy is older..

shylyn
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Postby csc » Mon Feb 02, 2009 11:12 am

Maybe some of you have come across this book..

"How to Win Friends & Influence People" by Dale Carnegie.... find it extremely helpful in handling personal relationships.

Just quote some key points from the book.

> Don't criticize, condemn or complain.
> Give honest and SINCERE appreciation.
> Be GENUINELY interested in other people.
> Remember that a person's name is the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
> Be a good LISTENER. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
> Talk in terms of the other person's interest.
>Make the other person feel important and do it SINCERELY.
>SMILE :D

And I believe it can be developed though some of us are born to be more naturally people-oriented than task-oriented. :lol:

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Postby sashimi » Mon Feb 02, 2009 12:44 pm

I believe that interpersonal skills in a child can be taught, but the most important source of education/influence is the child's parents and frequent social partners.

One of the most difficult challenges of teaching this to a child however, is trying to get the child to understand that the world is not about him, that he is not the centre of the universe.

From what I've read, a child is born with little sense of empathy. Children are designed to protect their own interests first and foremost. It is only with interaction in society that she learns that OTHER people have needs too.

So, I try to teach my DD with this in mind. Suffice to say, we still have some ways to go.

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Postby EN » Mon Feb 02, 2009 12:57 pm

I shouldn't get the honourary mention. I am just another forumer who might in my course of eagerness ruffles some feathers among parents. Or just being in a side fence might make people sees red. But then every individuals are differents & my belief & stands might not reach out to most of the people.

Interpersonal skill can be taught. I do agree with both Sashimi & csc statement.

My stands is, if I think I'm rich, there are other people richer than me. If I think I'm smart, there are others smarter than me. If I think I'm in a bad shape (oh god!! the work is currently killing me), I'm sure there are others worst off than me. With this thoughts in mind, it helps to remind me that I am not so great after all. Just another God's creation in an ocean full of people.

EN
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Postby tamarind » Mon Feb 02, 2009 1:22 pm

jedamum,
I agree that really good interpersonal skills come from the heart. But then it also depends on what kind of boss we are working under.

I used to have an ex-colleague who is always to eager to please everyone. She regularly buys big boxes of cakes/kuehs/cookies and treat everyone for free. Her work performance, however, is less than satisfactory. When it comes to retrenchment, she gets to stay while others who were much more hardworking were asked to leave !

I really don't know whether she was really genuine or not. There is no way that I can try to do the same in my new work place, it is just not in my character.

I do encourage my girl to be generous to her friends. For example, once when I printed out Little Einsteins coloring pages for her, she asked if I could print out another 17 pages, one for each of her classmates. I said OK.

Another time we made a pretty beaded butterfly at home. My girl brought it to school, and I noticed that her Chinese teacher was very interested in it. Since it was near teacher's day, and we had some more beads left at home, I told my girl to make another beaded butterfly to give to her teacher. Now I need your honest opinion. Did I make it seem like she is going out of the way to please other people ? Is it the right thing to do ?

shylyn wrote:Hmm..coming back to whether this is inborn, i guess partly...take my boy for example..as a bb ( cant rem exactly how many months), whenever we scold/raise our voices at him, instead of crying or being scared, he will laugh & giggle at us..till we r unable to control & laugh instead. Now that he is almost 3, he has really good inter personal skills/EQ..he will say his please/thank u (occasional reminders from us), mixes easily with everyone (toddlers his age to adults)..on the whole, very likeable to everyone who sees him..not sure whether this is inborn though. I rem my hub saying, shortly after i gave birth, that people who was born on that day, has good people relations. I guess, i can only confirm when my boy is older..

I think your boy certainly have very good EQ ! I can imagine how lovable he is ! It is definitely very fortunate to be born with such characteristics, he is already all his way to success !

My boy, on the other hand, immediately runs away to hide, once we started to scold him. Not very good EQ :(

csc,
I think you have posted very good points here. The only thing is that perhaps it is OK to complain ? Being a woman, I love to complain and rant. That is my way of dealing with stress and depression. I talk about it to get it off my chest. So long as I find people who are willing to listen, then it is OK right ? Of course I try to be a good listener to other people's problems too.


EN wrote:I shouldn't get the honourary mention. I am just another forumer who might in my course of eagerness ruffles some feathers among parents. Or just being in a side fence might make people sees red. But then every individuals are differents & my belief & stands might not reach out to most of the people.

I realized that in the past I probably wrote things that you may not be happy about. I think the way you handled it was very nice, and the fact is that we can still carry out friendly conversations, that's why I thought of you in this thread. I really hope that there are more people like you around. :)

EN wrote:My stands is, if I think I'm rich, there are other people richer than me. If I think I'm smart, there are others smarter than me. If I think I'm in a bad shape (oh god!! the work is currently killing me), I'm sure there are others worst off than me. With this thoughts in mind, it helps to remind me that I am not so great after all. Just another God's creation in an ocean full of people.


I agree !

sashimi wrote:One of the most difficult challenges of teaching this to a child however, is trying to get the child to understand that the world is not about him, that he is not the centre of the universe.

The reason why I wanted to have another child, is so that my older girl does not think that she is the centre of the universe. When my younger boy was born, it took her a long time to adjust to this fact. But when she finally understands and starts to take care of her younger brother, I am so happy.

I totally respect those who choose to have only one child, and I am sure those parents have their ways of making sure that the child does not think that he or she is in the centre of the universe.

tamarind
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Postby csc » Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:44 pm

Hi Tamarind,

Those points are the author’s. Glad u find them helpful. I think it’s pretty normal to ‘complain’ especially us, ladies. We enjoy letting off steam once in a while… but make sure it’s to a confined and trustworthy group of friends. My group of girlfriends will gather to “complain’ or rant about the education system, the kids, the husbands and the list the goes on, once in a while.

BUT I must caution that complaining too much of inadequacies of our lives tends to bring our spirits down. It’s always good to be positive and be grateful for what we have…

I don’t know if you’ve heard that a woman is the thermostat of her home. We are capable of setting the tone of our home. I believe that if there is less condemnation, criticism and complaints , we will be more pleasant people to relate with ,not only at home but among our colleagues and friends too. And hopefully, the positive spirit will be “caught” by our next generation.
:D

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Postby jedamum » Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:51 pm

tamarind wrote:Another time we made a pretty beaded butterfly at home. My girl brought it to school, and I noticed that her Chinese teacher was very interested in it. Since it was near teacher's day, and we had some more beads left at home, I told my girl to make another beaded butterfly to give to her teacher. Now I need your honest opinion. Did I make it seem like she is going out of the way to please other people ? Is it the right thing to do ?

ah...eager to impress vs being anti-social...it's a pretty thin line to tread when teaching the kids whether to be more sociable vs resisting peer pressure. tough being a parent, right?

i think the occasional gifts to teachers on a special occasion is perfectly acceptable if the kid puts in effort in making the stuff instead of merely buying it.

my mum used to bake extra cake for my teachers as they showed a keen interest in my delicious raisin cake...but that does not make me any sociable...although i have a feeling that the day the teacher spare me from the rod (cos whole class didn't clean up the art room after lessons) is due to the cakes.... :wink:

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Interpersonal Skills

Postby buds » Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:53 pm

Heyya tamarind,

Paiseh leh get mentioned exclusively.. :oops:
If i had that skill, i suppose i wudn't have
been engaged in any so-call fire spark at all.
:wink:
Heheh..

Niwae, on the topic of interpersonal skills.
The word "skills" itself means - "practised ability".
So, i suppose the answer is,
yes, can be learned..
and yes, can be taught...

Would like to quote the man himself : Howard Gardner

"In the heyday of the psychometric and behaviorist eras, it was generally believed that intelligence was a single entity that was inherited; and that human beings - initially a blank slate - could be trained to learn anything, provided that it was presented in an appropriate way. Nowadays an increasing number of researchers believe precisely the opposite; that there exists a multitude of intelligences, quite independent of each other; that each intelligence has its own strengths and constraints; that the mind is far from unencumbered at birth; and that it is unexpectedly difficult to teach things that go against early 'naive' theories of that challenge the natural lines of force within an intelligence and its matching domains."
(Gardner 1993: xxiii)

buds
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