There is a special day at the start of January, the 2nd to be exact – although the people it is celebrating are not bothered about all the fuss it creates.
Guessed what it is? It’s World Introvert Day.
Being an introvert in a world of high-flying extrovert ‘A‘ type personalities can be intimidating, especially when the corporate world seems to extoll the extravert personality traits. But the introverted employee, team member, manager and often CEO adds huge value to our planet.
Before we debate and share the immense value introverts bring to the workplace, it is always good to start with a definition, especially if you are using the word to describe rather than label.
What Defines an Introvert?
This is from Healthline:
“An introvert is often thought of as a quiet, reserved, and thoughtful individual. They do not seek out special attention or social engagements, as these events can leave introverts feeling exhausted and drained.“
Psychologist Carl Jung was the first person to describe two personality extremes back in the 1960s. He wrote that introverts and extraverts could be separated based on how they regain energy. (The term “extrovert“ is now used more commonly than “extravert.“) Introverts, his basic definition said, prefer minimally stimulating environments, and they need time alone to recharge.
However, we know now that these personality traits are not all or nothing. Introverts can have elements of extroversion in their personalities; they may like acting on stage or throwing parties. Extroverts may like a little more solitude from time to time and prefer to work alone when they need to focus.
Confused? Assuming most introverts assume the recognised definition, and the key is often how we regain energy. Take a moment to reflect; do other’s help you gain regain energy or do you prefer to regain energy alone? The answer to this is likely to inform you of your own extraverted or introverted tendencies.
They Listen and Process
Have you ever had a decision fall down because no one had thought through the detail; often preceded by a lack of listening to exactly what was being said?
As a learning consultancy working across the globe, we experience this happening regularly. If only that quiet employee in the corner had been asked for their opinion earlier, maybe the decision would have been different.
Introverts Care About People And Have An Open Mind
More than ever as we navigate and process what has been happening during the COVID pandemic, organisations need thoughtful and open-minded leaders.
It’s simply not true that introverts do not make good leaders. Some of the most innovative and successful leaders are introverts:
- Bill Gates
- Jeff Bezos
- Elon Musk
- Marissa Mayer
- Steve Wozniak
… the list goes on!
Though introverted personas may lack the perceived charisma of an extravert, they are thoughtful and open-minded when developing strategies, considering innovative ideas and recruiting staff members.
Their caring nature also gives them other advantages too, like self-reflection and an eye for detail.
Introverts Are Self Reflectors With An Eye For Detail
An upside of being a listener who also processes what is being said is that introverts reflect and make personal changes based on feedback they are given.
In tandem, this allows introverts to excel when correcting their errors, as they take their mistakes seriously once they realise what has happened: Quite a different reaction to the extravert response.
When you consider that making mistakes is a common occurrence for human beings on the planet – introvert employees are a joy! As a manager, it is a delight to have conscientious and thoughtful contributors on your team.
Let’s explore a few more benefits of this detailed approach.
Introverts Make Reasoned Rather Than Irrational Decisions
Success is commonly linked to the number of decisions we make that work out; another reason why you need more introverts on your team!
Though introverts can be criticised for over-analysing decisions to the point where they suffer paralysis by analysis, this is often exaggerated.
Give me a thought-through decision using a filter of multiple ‘what if’ scenarios any day of the week.
Introverts Are Empathetic Connectors
As I touched on earlier, most introverts have a higher level of self–awareness and consequently are more sensitive when it comes to the needs of their work colleagues around them.
This level of sensitivity also helps when it comes to their ability to connect with others, especially in a professional context. These connections help to drive understanding too, which is the missing link and cause of many team working issues.
Understanding how different people are from a behavioural context is critical for every organisation.
As the workplace becomes more culturally, behaviourally and educationally diverse, more versatile interaction is essential to the success of any organisation.
This is where Excel can help through our Social Styles programme.
Social Styles helps you identify your preferred communication style and the styles of others and how to use this knowledge to develop far more effective and productive working relationships. If you want to find out how we can deliver this virtually for your organisation, get in contact here or call us on +44(0) 1628 488 854.
P.S. If you would like to attend one of our complimentary taster leadership workshops, call us on +44(0) 1628488 854.
About Excel Communications
Excel Communications is a learning and development consultancy based near London in the U.K. For more than 30 years; we have been collaborating with clients across the globe.
Partnering with Excel empowers you to evolve your people and business by fuelling a love for learning.
We work with you to create unforgettable, customised learning experiences to achieve your vision of success and growth, with tangible results.
View our case studies here. Call us now on +44 (0) 1628 488 854.
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