I used to think that I was a person who preferred my own company and I didn’t need to spend lots of time with others. Nowadays the situation has definitely changed. I actually relish meeting new people and learning about them and what makes them tick. Being introduced to someone for the first time is an opportunity to look into a different front door.
It is too easy with the pace of modern life to rush around and avoid talking to people we meet along the way. There is always time to be saved by emailing them instead. And after all why would we want people to talk to us and either challenge what we are doing or make us review the approach we have taken.
We cannot and should not hide away. On a personal level sharing and being social have huge health benefits that have been outlined. Human beings are social creatures and need to be able to interact in person as well as online. I know some people will say they are shy but this isn’t about confidence it is about getting involved. There are lots of tools and techniques people can use to help them connect to other people and if you relax you will get the most out of the situation.
For the communication professional recognising that there are many different perspectives and people have different views is essential. Without this clarity of understanding you will never be able to appropriately target communication activity that you are planning. There is no hiding away from direct conversations as they hold the key to effective communication activity but more than that they can help to spark ideas.
I have increasingly realised during 2016 that I am quite excited to meet people from different backgrounds and to use the experience to test my own views and thought processes. It gives me a chance to consider new ideas but also to be aware of what really matters. It is not all about confidence. It is about being nosy and interest in others, because that way we can learn more about ourselves.