Introverts in a business world

Introverts are drained by social encounters and energized by solitary, often creative pursuits. Their disposition is frequently misconstrued as shyness, social phobia or even avoidant personality disorder, but many introverts socialize easily; they just strongly prefer not to… –

What do Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg all have in common? In addition to being some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world, all three are introverts. The definition above makes us think that introverts just like sitting alone, but apparently they use this alone time better than most of us. The surprise comes from the fact that in this fast pace world, introverts seem to thrive when others struggle to keep up.

Wonder why?

Being an introvert is something that many don’t know from the start. Is just a personality trait at the opposite end of the spectrum where extroverts are. Being an introvert is not something bad that you should try to cover up, and comes with a lot of great qualities if you are willing to act on them.

All the great examples from the business world are prof that you can make it. You just need some great advice and the will power to go the extra mile.

So what can you do to overcome the „social phobia”?

Get an extroverted partner.

This translates into: one is the brain of the operation, the other is the charismatic sales man. Consider this partner as the wingman that does all the talking at a conference network session, leads a presentation on behalf of the team. It doesn’t mean that the introvert can’t do it too, instead is less „painful” for the extrovert to handle it.

Introverts are great leaders in the online era

Since companies use to pick introverts to do the thinking as engineers, writers and other creative stuff, extroverts used to be leaders, marketers and sales people. In the globalised business world a leader is less needed to charm it’s team, but instead is required to effectively communicate online. And in this online era introverts seem to do it better.

Schedule one-on-one meetings

Public speaking is a fear greater than  death they say, and as an introvert myself I tend to agree. Talking to an audience bigger than 3 is scary but not impossible. To avoid this just schedule one-on-one meetings. They are more intimate and you get to talk more open. If you cannot do this all the time, then consider taking that partner. If this is still not an option, then you will find that over time it will get easier after you get to know the people you meet constantly.

Be a god a self-promoting

Sharing links on LinkedIn and commenting on threads is an easy way to get noticed. Joining groups and discussions on the topics you follow are a great way to do this naturally.

Let your social profiles speak for you. This means that the information you put in reflects what you do, what are your interests and gives potential clients a way to get in touch. Also, show off your expertise in written articles of curated contend from the sites you follow. This creates a professional image especially on business channels as LinkedIn.

Plan ahead

Networking at a conference doesn;t come easy to an introvert. So if you go alone and want to meet some people, think ahead some icebreaker questions regarding the subject of the conference or other industry related topics. Maybe you can ask those questions about the future of the online business and get some interesting insights.

Asking for advice is always a good approach

Asking people to talk about what they are passionate about can be a great source of insight in their mind and also people love to educate. There is no shame in asking for details on a matter that you dindn’t quite get.

Be willing to share things about you too

Avoid being too interrogative and insert some information about yourself into the discussion. You never know what your hobby can sparkle into a networking session. Also, sharing with others helps them remember you after the meeting is over.

Follow on social media

After meeting people at a business event, follow them on social media. They might lose you business card or forget about it, but when you follow them on LinkedIn of Twitter, gives them a reminder that you spoke and they have better chances of remembering you the next time you meet.

Recharge your batteries

Working with people is always a challenge and introverts do not thrive on this. So after a long meeting, take some alone time doing what you love to recharge your batteries. Getting back in the zone of creative stimulation is an art and takes some skills to get to.

Always remember, your introversion isn’t a disease. It’s part of what makes you an awesome, effective business owner, so get out there and use it to your advantage!

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