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Interpersonal skills you need to succeed at work

Having strong interpersonal skills are key in climbing the ladder. Take a look at the top interpersonal skills you’ll need to be successful.

Interpersonal skills you need to succeed at work

Being successful at work isn’t just dependent on how good you are at your job. Sure, you could be the most qualified worker in your department, but if you can’t work well with others, you can’t expect to climb the ladder.

Let’s take a look at some examples of interpersonal skills you need to be successful at work, and to include on your CV:

  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Problem solving
  • Listening
  • Taking criticism
  • Persuasiveness
  • Assertiveness
  • Positivity
  • Patience
  • Trust

What are interpersonal skills?

Interpersonal skills are the soft skills needed to work and communicate effectively with others. This could be on an individual basis, or even as a group. In a workplace setting, it relates to everyone you come into contact with including your colleagues, managers and customers. 

10 essential interpersonal skills to succeed at work


Being able to work well as part of a team is critical to your career’s success. It’s very rare that you’ll find a career that doesn’t require any teamwork. To truly shine, you need to work in unison with others, recognising their strengths and contributing your own.

Problem solving

Problems arise all the time at work, whether you’re dealing with colleagues or customers. So it’s a real bonus if you can be the type of person who finds solutions to problems when they crop up, rather than making the matter worse. 


Having the ability to clearly communicate your ideas is a key interpersonal skill. Not everyone is able to communicate ideas clearly and in an engaging way – so this is a real asset!


Listening is one of the most important interpersonal skills you can have, and is often overlooked. But great communication starts with the ability to listen properly. That means devoting your attention solely to whoever is speaking, therefore being able to respond in a direct and relevant way. 

Taking criticism

We all have our flaws, and we all have areas we can improve on. But being open to that feedback is a different thing. Often, employees can become defensive if they’re challenged. But it’s important to always remain open to feedback, and to be able to acknowledge your weaknesses. That’s a real sign of strength!


Having persuasive skills is a great interpersonal skill to have under your belt. Being persuasive isn’t just for salespeople. It’s for anyone who needs to work with others, especially for people wanting to take on a leadership role. If you have a new idea to bring to the table, you need to be able to present it in a compelling way that highlights the benefits and gets others excited about your idea too.


Being assertive is a real skill – and one that many people struggle with. But in business, there are always moments when you need to assert yourself. From negotiating important deals to resolving workplace conflicts, there are several moments throughout the working day where an assertive personality is needed.


Having bags of positivity is crucial in the working world. We encounter problems everyday, and it’s only by adopting a positive mental attitude that we can overcome these problems. That’s not to say you can’t be realistic about any challenges, but there’s always an opportunity to boost morale by bringing a positive spin.


Patience is a great interpersonal skill to have, particularly if you’re aspiring to a leadership position. Not everyone works at the same pace, and not all projects go to plan. So you need to have patience when things don’t go as you planned rather than losing your composure and creating friction within the team.


Trust is a key soft skill when it comes to interacting with colleagues. Without trusting your colleagues to perform certain tasks, you’ll never be able to work as part of a team and you’ll end up trying to manage everything yourself – this will inevitably lead to burnout and disaster.

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