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7 Tips for Successfully Managing Introverts

The distinctions between introverts and extroverts continue to receive attention. You are undoubtedly already aware of the main difference: introverts need quiet, alone time to recharge internally. Interacting with others helps extroverts refuel. Whether they enjoy being around others generally has no bearing on these recharging needs. Both extroverts and introverts might be extremely outgoing or cherish their alone time. People’s tendency to think of introverts as bashful may be their biggest mistake when they hear the word. This is why it is essential to have a process while managing introverts.

Roughly half of the people are introverts. However, introverts are frequently forgotten about, even in the professional world, in a society where the loud and the brave garner most of the attention. It is up to you as a manager to encourage everyone on your team, from the talkative and outgoing to the contemplative and silent, to express their creativity and ideas. You must locate untapped mental capacity and direct it. 


How to Identify an Introvert?

First things first: what exactly is an introvert? And how can you spot them in employees? 

An introvert is someone who is usually reserved, quiet, and self-reliant. Introverts may require more time than others to recover from social engagements because they are less likely to have feelings of contentment:

Typical characteristics of an introverted personality include the following: 

  • Quiet demeanor 
  • Choosing to work alone
  • Imaginative and full of ideas 
  • Contemplative 
  • Slow to speak
  • Analytical and Systematic 
  • Thinks ahead

Since they prefer to plan more carefully, introverts typically don’t need as much supervision as their extroverted counterparts. Additionally, they are excellent at formulating thoughts and absorbing all they discover through even the most minor observation. The majority fall between the two. You can, however, make more strategic choices about staff management if you are aware of particular methods to coach such team members. 


7 Tips – Managing Introverts in the Workplace

You may effectively lead and encourage your introverted colleagues in several ways without discouraging your outgoing ones. The provision of flexibility is a common theme across the suggestions on this list of managing introverts. Here are some pointers for collaborating with and making the most of the more reserved team members.



1. Encourage Participation 
Encourage attendance at meetings by creating a framework that promotes everyone being heard. Give each participant a set number of tokens to be used each time they speak, or assign agenda items (and the associated legwork) to particular people. 

2. Speak Up for Them
When they deserve a pat on the back, speak up on their behalf. Many introverts are modest about themselves. Look at what they did. Gratify it. However, it might be wise to let them know in advance if you plan to do so in public. Usually, they don’t enjoy being the focus of attention.

3. Provide Peace and Quiet
By providing a location where they may take a break from ongoing social engagements for a while, you can give them space and quiet. Employees don’t typically have offices at work, so just locking the door for a short period isn’t an option. Is there another location where I could take a quiet break? Group your inquiries, requests, and other low-priority items to reduce sporadic interruptions. 

4. Allow Independent Work
Even though teamwork is a necessary component of any workplace, you should give them the freedom to work independently periodically. Individual or alone employment tends to be preferred by introverts.

5. Allow for Follow-up 
Do so by encouraging your team to keep thinking about the subjects discussed following a meeting. Please enable them to communicate these ideas and views from the post-meeting by email or a separate follow-up meeting. If the material is given more time to sink in then big ideas might emerge.

6. Preparation Time
Provide time for planning by distributing an agenda before meetings or brainstorming sessions. Due to their preparation and improved ability to respond and provide ideas and solutions, your introverts will feel more at ease at the table due to this warning. If you don’t ask for a spontaneous reaction, introverts are likely to give you a thoughtful response because they are generally skilled at analyzing information.

7. Respect Boundaries
Do not force your staff members to participate because Introverts need downtime to re-energize. Therefore they might not be up for all team-building activities.


Do’s & Don’ts of Managing Introverts 

Contrary to popular belief, introversion doesn’t mean being reserved and timid. It’s more about a person’s method of approaching people and jobs. Introverts are just as creative, enthusiastic, active, and expressive as extroverts while having a more restrained manner. On the other hand, these desirable traits can also be accompanied by some unfavorable traits that can prevent introverts from being recognized for their contributions or rising to leadership positions. These characteristics are the cause of the requirement for managers to coach their introverted team members occasionally. Here are some dos and don’ts for managing introverts to help you be a better coach:

Do’s:

  • Recognize the benefits of supporting the introverts on your team and the risks involved if you don’t. 
  • Learn to spot introversion in others. 
  • Assist introverts in setting and achieving appropriate standards and goals. 
  • Encourage skill expansion through training. 
  • Communicate with introverts in mind, and urge your outgoing team members to do the same. 
  • Create a space where everyone is welcome to speak out and share, and all forms of communication are valued. 
  • Make use of the innate tendencies of your staff.

Don’ts:

  • Lower the bar you’ve set for others. 
  • Don’t force an introvert into the spotlight if it’s not wanted or necessary. 
  • Believe you can alter an introvert’s personality to suit your working preferences. 
  • Give up being patient.

Know Your Employees

Before taking any action, you must get to know your staff. And a straightforward method to determine who may be an introvert or extrovert is to survey your team and get input on the type of environment employees want to work in. After that, you can put your managerial abilities to use. It can quickly get overwhelming when we divide your staff into two extreme personality groups. However, it’s vital to remember that neither the majority of people nor all management styles are extroverted or introverted. 

Studies on the preferences of both personality types in the workplace have also been conducted. For example:

  • Introverts prefer workplace training that breaks down mental barriers, whereas extroverts prefer an activity that encourages idea development. 
  • Introverts favor immediate rewards. Although introverts don’t always benefit from bonuses, they could take punishment worse. 
  • Interpersonal communication-based work is where extroverts excel, whereas introverts may need more goal-oriented employment.

Conclusion

You may have noticed that some of your staff members are introverts. People who prefer to be alone may be silent during meetings and dislike small talk. They may also like to eat lunch alone. Yes, they don’t speak much, but when you give them an issue, they go off to a corner to think and devise a fantastic solution. Employers must comprehend for the benefit of both the business and the personnel while managing introverts. If you don’t know, or even worse, don’t care, how your introverted employees are doing, you could be losing out on a lot.

FAQs

1. How do you handle extremely introverted people? 

  • Have direct conversations
  • Encourage them to speak up 
  • Give an introvert enough time to reply 
  • Don’t be afraid of conversational pauses 
  • Develop your listening abilities
  • Increase your text and email communication 
  • Recognize their skills and successes

2. What traits make someone an introvert? 
Introverts, in general:

  • They require solitude to focus
  • They reflect
  • Own self-awareness 
  • Make decisions slowly
  • Feel at ease being by themselves
  • Dislike working in groups
  • Prefer writing over speaking 
  • After being in a swarm, they feel worn out
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