Maximizing Your Quiet Brilliance
Introverts constitute 51 to 57% of the population, yet represent only a small fraction of leaders and influencers in the workplace. Why? Our culture focuses on extroversion as the standard of excellence, overlooking the need for the quiet reflection and analytic ability that introverts contribute.
Leaders need to learn how to include and develop the quiet brilliance of introverts. Introverts need to learn how to connect, communicate and establish themselves as contributors of excellence – without becoming extroverts.
Helping Introverts and Extroverts
Connect and Communicate
How does misunderstanding people affect personal and professional success?
Low productivity, lack of creativity, conflict, and costly and dangerous errors and omissions come about principally because of communication difficulties, and these difficulties are based on differences in personality and communication styles.
One of these big differences that has gained much attention recently is the gap between introverts and extroverts.
Why is this important in the United States right now?
In the United States, our society has become more demanding, challenging, speeded-up, and external goal-oriented; in fact, it has established extroversion as the norm and introversion as some kind of deficiency. The result: a brain drain of the reflective, analytic thought and forethought that introverts – who constitute slightly over one-half of the population – can contribute.
Employee Engagement is a Major Factor in Success
The one thing that creates the sustainable, competitive advantage, ROI and long-term strength of a company is the workforce – people. The one thing that keeps people engaged – enthusiastic and focused on the mission of the company – is the personal relationship with their immediate supervisor.
Yet too often these relationships suffer because of very real and understandable barriers: the lack of “people literacy”: the ability to understand and relate effectively to people different from oneself. Leading, guiding, motivating and giving constructive feedback depend on understanding other people.
Small business owners and solopreneurs, too, can benefit from an in-depth understanding of partners, clients, and customers.
It’s stressful, too!
Another result: decreased wellness in the workplace. To be marginalized and not have your contributions recognized is to have lower morale. To deal with people you don’t understand, who seem to be unresponsive to what you want and need, is frustrating. Continuing low morale and frustration can contribute heavily to a state of low-level anxiety and depression, the kinds of emotional states that make the greatest contributions to poor health.
Differences are not only good; they’re essential. Think “yin” and “yang.”
Extroverts and introverts have different motivation, different communication styles, and different ways of arriving at solutions. If you are not aware of this, and cannot work with both types of people, you are seriously limiting your world and lowering your chances of success – whether you are an individual, entrepreneur, employee, manager, or business owner.
Remember: we live in a world that is approximately 50% introverts and 50% extroverts.
Whether you’re managing up or managing down, you can bridge that gap!
…and my expertise can help you do it.