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Sociability refers to your ability to make (new) social contacts. If you are very sociable, you like being in the company of others, you can easily approach people and you can easily get involved in company.

What does sociability mean in practice?

Specifically, sociability means the following:

- You don't suffer from embarrassment; you easily approach others at meetings and festivities and take the floor smoothly.
- You are good at small talk, you are not shy about conversation topics.
- You easily respond to a conversation that is already going on.
- You know how to make contacts that are useful for your own position within and outside the organization.
- You communicate with people of different levels, education and background; you connect your own behavioral style to this.
- You bring people into contact with each other who can have added value for each other.
- You are strong in maintaining contacts by regularly approaching others yourself.
- You are aware of the people and networks that are relevant to the organization where you work and you actively approach them.
- You sit on boards and committees that can be useful for the organization where you work or for your own career.

Demonstrate your sociability in an application

If a job vacancy text states that sociability is an important job requirement, then the trick is to show that you are sociable in your.application letter and the job interview. You do that by giving concrete examples. Use the STAR method for this. If you apply for the position of journalist, for example, write that you can easily make contacts, sit on different committees and boards and therefore have a large network in journalism, social and social Netherlands.

If you are invited for a job interview, then you explain this. Questions can also be asked, such as:

- What was the most recent meeting you've been to? How do you behave then? How many people have you spoken to? Do you also address strangers?
- When did you last meet new people who you consider part of your network? How did you make the contact?
- Which boards and committees are you in? What can these contacts mean for our organization?

By the way, the interviewer will already estimate your degree of sociability when you are picked up at the reception for the interview. If you shook hands and then walk silently and tightly in front of you, you will not come across as someone who can easily chat. On the other hand, show your interest in the other by, for example, a - positive! - make a comment about the business premises or the paintings on the wall, then you come across as someone who is not shy about conversation.

Can this competence be developed?

Whether you like to be alone or prefer to be surrounded by people and whether you can easily chat or have a difficult conversation is more or less ingrained in your personality. Sociability is therefore a competence that is difficult to develop. Although difficult, it's not impossible to become more skilled at it. The range of training courses in the field of social and communication skills is countless. If you prefer to get started yourself, the following tips can also help you:

- Consider for yourself in which situations you would find it necessary and pleasant if you could easily get involved in a group. Which groups evoke tension in you? Which groups prevent you from actively seeking contact?
- Which of your colleagues, family or friends easily gets involved in company? Ask that person how he or she contacts others. With which question or comment does he open the conversation? Which topics does he then address? What does he gain from contact with others?
- Become a member of an association, committee, board, the works council or another organization. As a result, you gain all kinds of new social contacts and you develop routine in maintaining relationships.
- Choose a group activity that is shortly scheduled, for example a family reunion, a drink at work or a birthday party. Think in advance what you want to talk about, write down these questions and learn them by heart. The more often you practice this, the easier it becomes to come up with questions on the spot and to respond to what the other person is saying. Always go one step further by moving from known and trusted people to unknown groups.
- Evaluate the conversations you have. How much did you like them? And if they were annoying, how did that happen? In which situations did the contact go very smoothly? Which people did you feel comfortable with? How did that happen? Are there still situations in which you find it difficult to make contacts? What exactly do you look up to? How can you remove these thresholds?

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