What do Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, Bill Gates of Microsoft, and J K Rowling, the author of Harry Potter, have in common?
They all self-identify as introverts.
Contrary to common belief, introversion is not synonymous with being quiet and shy. It’s all about an individual’s attitude to people and activities.
Although introverts are more guarded in their attitude, they are just as imaginative, enthusiastic, and insightful as extroverts.
There is often a huge misconception in the business world, demanding to be robust, loud, and assertive. If you’re a manager, then it’s also likely that you’ve come across various personalities and working styles along with your profession.
Typically, individuals fall into two broad categories: outgoing/sociable (extroverts) or withdrawn/reserved (introvert).
Regardless of one’s social rhythm, different personality styles bring about diverse skills and perspectives in a team.
Don’t you agree?
As a manager, you must harness each individual’s potential and ensure they feel supported and respected at work.
Particularly true for introverted workers, their quiet or timid nature will need a different approach than extroverts.
This blog portrays some helpful ways to manage introverts in your organization and strive towards maximizing their potential.
How To Recognize An Introvert
Introverts themselves may be very different from one another. Though the following characteristics may be concrete for some introverts, not all introverts meet every one of these criteria.
Even so, the following are among the most common characteristics of introverts:
- They are highly independent.
- They have a high level of self-awareness.
- They are seen as shy and reserved by others.
- When presented with ideas, introverts become motivated.
- They choose to engage in activities alone or with a limited number of people.
Why Introverts Make Great Employees And Leaders
- Introverts are frequently outstanding listeners, which comes in handy when leading a team.
- ‘Servant leadership,’ one of the best leadership practises, refers to a management style that prioritises and puts employees first. Numerous studies indicate that introverts often exhibit traits associated with this leadership style, such as modesty.
- Quieter workers are more mindful and reflective in their analysis of events. This reflection exercises creativity and motivates one to make more informed choices. Such a characteristic would be beneficial as an employee and manager.
- Introverts value personal, one-on-one relationships, which are critical for employee engagement. Additionally, they are more likely to establish personal relationships with their teammates, which enhances employees’ sense of connection to their leader or team member.
- Self-awareness is a critical trait that all leaders and workers must acquire in order to be emotionally intelligent. Introverts listen attentively, pick up on social cues, process knowledge, and see the big picture as a result of their self-awareness.
Tips To Manage Introverts In Your Organization
As a leader, you’ll need to develop the ability to work with a variety of personality styles and adapt your management style accordingly. Here’s a few recommendations to assist you in managing those silent workers more effectively.
1 – Be Patient With Them
Staying out of the daily office chit-chats or dodging encounters are a part of an introverted persona. As a manager, ensure you don’t take them personally or draw conclusions about them.
Lack of expression in such manners doesn’t necessarily symbolize that an employee is dissatisfied or disengaged. Sometimes, this implies that they are in their minds, focused and happy.
Mainly if the introvert is new to your team or organization, it can take some time for them to warm up to you. Offer your encouragement and patience with them as they overcome their initial apprehension.
Recognize their silence as an advantage rather than a disadvantage. An introvert’s silence means that they think about their next move and design it creatively, benefitting any business.
2 – Give Them The Space They Need
Though introverts are highly artistic and innovative, they require suitable settings to work efficiently. To empower introverts to perform their best, managers must learn how to embrace their personal space.
Introverts, who are easily fatigued with prolonged interactions with others, require a place to unwind.
Providing them with significant alone time to recharge and complete their assignments is critical. You can provide quiet areas for introvert workers to relax before returning to their desks.
It might be a small nap station or a peaceful place to unwind in the company of books.
Allowing introverted workers to work from home on a limited basis can often aid in their productivity improvement.
Scheduling one-on-one meetings for introverted employees is another great way to give them room while also allowing for more personal contact.
They’re also more than likely to prefer email or chat, so ensure you are considerate of that.
3 – Give Time to Think, Plan & Prepare
Allow introverts to collect their thoughts and reflect. This increases the likelihood of them providing you with excellent ideas and tactics.
Managers must ensure that the conference agenda is understandable before the meeting to assist introverted employees in efficiently preparing for and communicating their ideas.
In inevitable emergency meetings, managers should give introverted workers more time to reflect and inquire after the conference or a day later.
Additionally, it may be advisable to seek their opinion through the mode of communication they prefer.
Managers could, for example, wait an hour or two following the meeting before sending them an email or text message asking their input.
4 – Celebrate The Differences
Avoid the misconception that introverts dislike group work; they are sometimes a team’s most dedicated and productive participants in many ways.
It’s natural for introverts to go unnoticed, but you must seek them out actively and be as inclusive as possible.
Suppose the team consists of introverts and extroverts.
In that case, certain employee engagement activities can help bring the team together to discuss each member’s unique characteristics and how those features can contribute to the outcomes.
However, managers must ensure that they circulate the agenda to motivate the introverted members to work optimally.
When introverts’ talents become more recognised, business cultures and management styles are likely to change.
Managers seeking to maximise employee efficiency and capacity should undoubtedly consult this guide to introvert management!
What’s your opinion on this, or please let us know your experience with any of your introvert employee in the comment section. For such interesting and exciting content, don’t forget to subscribe our weekly newsletter.
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Associate Growth Manager
Prashant is Associate Growth Manager in PagarBook and manages all the organic web presence for brand.