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Useful Business Skills Outside of the Workplace

While you might question the practical value of some areas of formal education, the day to day usefulness of many business skills cannot be disputed. This is true because success in business is highly dependent of effective communication, and communicating is something you will be called on to do continually in your personal and professional life. Also, the need for time management and organization transcends business. Consider a few examples where mastering some useful business skills will enhance your everyday life.

Communication

Most business curriculum includes training in the art of negotiation. In business, negotiation often involves coming to a mutual agreement that serves the interests of all parties involved. Compromise is required, and the ability to serve one’s own interests while meeting the needs of others is crucial. With this in mind, consider how negotiation training might help you to get along with your roommates. Living in close quarters with others can be a source of conflict. You might want to have a particular room for yourself, require a certain amount of privacy or have preferences when it comes to home décor. Since compromise will no doubt be involved in resolving these issues, you will have to effectively communicate with your roommate to see that mutual interests are served. Applying the negotiating skills you have developed in business can help you to maintain peace in your home.

Leadership

Business training places much emphasis on developing leadership skills. A successfully managed household also requires effective leadership, and this is especially true if you have a family at home. Imagine working to motivate your children or your spouse in the same manner that you try to motivate subordinates at work. Your positive reinforcement, willingness to listen and leadership by example will inspire your family members. Be careful not to expend so much energy leading your team at work that you have little remaining to offer your team at home.

Selling is often called the art of persuasion, and good salespeople are excellent communicators. Here again, applying this crucial business skill outside the workplace can make your life easier. Much sales training focuses on discussing the features of a product and then talking about how those features translate into benefits for a prospective customer. Parents often find themselves trying to convince their children of the benefits that will result from following a particular course of action. Instead of just talking about the features of a good education, for instance, a parent can focus on the benefits that education will provide for a child. Once the child is sold on the value of education, external motivation may no longer be necessary.

Ambition

Effective goal setting is crucial for success in business. If you hope to accomplish much in your personal life, goals are important outside of the office. While people tend to set formal professional goals, they are often much more lax when it comes to what they hope to accomplish personally. Business training encourages putting a goal down on paper along with a formal plan of action that serves as a roadmap to success. With this method, progress can be tracked and needed adjustments made. Consider how helpful this professional approach could be when it comes to reaching a personal goal. Perhaps you want to lose weight or increase your fitness level. The same goal setting strategies that are effective for you at work can help you to achieve these objectives.

While everyone would acknowledge the value of time management and organization at work, their personal life may be far less structured. For instance, most business professionals thrive on maintaining a detailed calendar. Utilizing this habit at home can greatly increase your efficiency while decreasing your stress level. Operating from an agenda can help you to prioritize activities and lead to your spending more time on the things that are important to you.

People Skills

Business training encourages the development of a professional network. This network, developed via social media or more traditional means, can serve as a source of referrals and camaraderie for the businessperson. A personal network can be developed in much the same way. While some business contacts are likely to find a place in both networks, a group of friends that have nothing to do with your professional life can provide refreshment and a change a pace when you are away from the office. With this in mind, you must be willing to put forth sufficient effort to build a solid personal network.

Improving your skills in business is like getting two items for the price of one. Perhaps more than in any other area of formal education, what a person learns about being effective in business can be practically applied at home. If you strive to communicate with your family and organize your home life using sound business principles, you can enjoy success on both fronts.

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