interpersonal skills, soft skills, behavioral skills
NO CATEGORY / 14 December 2016
Face to Face - How I Grew My Interpersonal Skills
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Stephen Nemy

Growing up, I’ve always considered myself shy. I enjoyed spending time with close friends, but meeting new people was not my favorite activity. Making small talk with acquaintances was even worse. Today it is my job.

I am currently a peer advisor for the School of Information Studies at Syracuse University, lovingly called the iSchool. This means I have to develop relationships with prospective students, first-year students and their parents. But starting out as a peer advisor, I was nervous.

I was tasked with helping run the biggest event of the year: welcoming the entire incoming freshman class and their parents to campus. This meant I would be interacting with unknown people for an entire day and the last thing I wanted to do was present a bad experience to the incoming students. To prepare myself, I created a short bio that I would use to introduce myself, as well as a set of questions I would ask parents and students.

The big day arrived and I put on a smile, excited to represent my home school and unsure of how the day would go. As the event started kicking into gear, I realized that I really enjoyed speaking with everyone. I attributed this to being passionate about what I was talking about. I loved my first year in college and I wanted everyone to get excited for what the iSchool had in store for them.

Since that day, I have been involved in career fairs, meeting campus representatives from companies I wanted to work at, several interviews and numerous speaking events for the freshman class. I have found that the best way to let your true colors shine is to find what you are passionate about, connect it to your audience and bring it into your conversation. Having an in-depth knowledge of a subject, along with understanding current events enables you to be more confident and interpersonal. Everyone has a heart full of greatness within them; you just have to find a way to let it shine.