I am introvert, but I can be extrovert when I have to.
Introvert is not comfort to be in the middle of the crowds, and neither am I. Mingle is definitely not my thing, except when it comes to work. Talking to clients and colleagues is a part of my job description, so that like it or not, I have to blend in. I can’t be just the girl who sits quietly on the corner (even back in college, I always sat on the front row just because it helped me to focus with my study back then).
Introvert is more comfortable with small circle of friends and I find it is so true to me. I feel more engaged with a smaller group of friends and I’m not interested to have more friends in my phonebook. However, that simply can’t be the case when I’m at work. Networking can be so powerful I can’t ignore it at all. Not only networking helps me to achieve my goals, but also it gives me the best opportunity I could possibly have.
Finally, as most people know, introvert is shy, and so am I. Introvert is not that kind of person who is carving to be the center of attention. With that being said, I just can’t be shy at work. I have to show others what I’m capable of even if it will tend to make me as the center of people’s attention. I know that being shy will never take me this far in my career. And it turns out that being well known is actually not that bad, not at all!
Does it mean we have to be extrovert at work? Not entirely. There are many introvert qualities that also keep me going with my career.
The first one, introvert is a good observer. When I don’t talk, I observe, I connect the dots, and I get myself an insight. It makes me good at reading people and this kind of knowledge is a powerful skill you’ve got to have at work. When you know the people you work with, you know how to deal with them so that you can work together with them to pursue the goals (in other words, your goal).
The second one, introvert is a better listener. I’m capable to patiently listen to my colleague instead of rushing to get my own turn to speak. And once again, it helps me to get to know the people I’m working with. It gives me so many useful information about them and about many other things happening in the office. Knowledge is power, and sometimes, all you’ve got to do is just to listen to others’ long talks.
The third one, introvert is usually sensitive and so am I. I can sense how others feel towards something just by looking at their gestures and facial expressions. It helps me to predict someone’s reaction to certain thing so that I can prepare the best way to deliver that information to them. Different people may require different approach, and this is where being sensible can be a huge help.
The fourth one, and this is the most important one, happiness of an introvert comes from within. I don’t lay my personal satisfaction on someone else, not even my bosses. I know myself better than anyone else in the office. That’s why I don’t need my boss’ compliment just to make me proud of my works. Not all bosses keen to let me know how satisfied they are with my works and that’s totally fine to me. Same thing when my boss has a bad day, it won’t instantly get under my skin. His problem is not necessarily my problem too. And that to me, is the beauty of being an introvert.
Unlike many researches out there, I’m a firm believer that introvert and extrovert have equal chance to succeed. Everyone can be anyone they want as long as they work hard and work smart to make it happen. Don’t let ourselves become the barrier of our career. Overcome our personality problems and start to make things happen!