In office environment, introverts catch the sight at once. In most cases, when they take part in team meetings and discussions, they never express any ideas before they are 100% assured that those ideas are good enough. On the contrary, extraverts are more likely to suggest any solution or plan that comes to their mind and share it with others at once.
When you are an introvert that occupies a leadership position, your communication patterns can be misunderstood easily. Pauses and delays can be perceived as actions of a hesitative person, who lacks confidence. Both characteristics are critically negative for female leaders.
As a person of that kind, you might have difficulties with presenting yourself as a strong and motivating leader because of your natural forms of communication. However, this is not a big deal and you don’t have to change your personality from the ground up and become someone else to be a motivating and strong leader. With these tips at hand, you will learn how to manage your responsibilities and engage with your co-workers in a more efficient way.
Know the members of your team
Even if you address the common and most primitive approaches of popular psychology, you will learn that there are more than 15 personality types. While there are no pure ones, you can perceive your team through a prism of such categories. You can start from offering them some tests that will reveal their core values and behavioral patterns and then discuss the results. Just be a little bit smarter than those tests are and remember that your team actually consists of real people, not examples from an encyclopedia.
While the tests are more like entertainment and rarely provide any complete information about the personalities of your team, they can still give you some clue. What is more, test results can become a perfect subject for a group discussion. Encourage your folks to talk about themselves and their colleagues and you will see that there are many new things they didn’t know before. You will make them reflect on their own values and allow other members to find out more about people they work with. If you know the core values of people, you have a better understanding of how to reach them. Open conversations about personalities and things that are important can increase the level of emotional intelligence in your team. As for you, this is a perfect chance to learn how you can help them meet their goals.
Manage the dynamics inside of your group
Providing people with an opportunity to understand each other better, you create a warmer environment. In addition, you get more useful information that will help you assist your colleagues be better and find a way to meet their own expectations about themselves and their activity. This way, you will surely decrease any suspicions that you are a hesitative and unconfident leader. What’s next?
When you know more about your employees, you can easily tell whose behavior is the same as yours and who is absolutely different. You will determine the extraverts right away and some of them might be informal leaders of the group. Find the influencers and arrange the meeting with them.
Influencers, that naturally appear in the group, are not your rivals. Instead, they can help you make a team stronger if you use their attributes to change the environment to better. All in all, if you are not an extravert yourself, you can always rely on those who are and use their skills for general benefit.
Things are the same when it comes to introverts in a team. For example, if you find out that some of your team members have interesting ideas about the projects, but they rarely share them, you can motivate them to lead those projects. If you are not ready to entrust an entire project, consider assigning some segments to this person and discuss this opportunity on the next meeting. Just give him some time before you do that. This will help him to prepare and practice his skills, which is absolutely necessary for introverts. Allowing introverts to take some time for thinking and preparations puts them in a comfortable environment, so they are more likely to share their ideas with others. In turn, great ideas will increase his self-confidence and credibility among coworkers. This way, the dynamics inside of your team is going to be improved significantly and people will trust you more.
Being a female leader and introvert at the same time might seem challenging from the first glance, however, when you have some useful tips at hand, there is no need to worry about that. Your team will bring perfect results after you grasp how to work with the dynamics within it. Try these pieces of advice and let the productivity in your office grow!
About the Author
Jennifer Pauli studied at Corvinus School of Management and finished the faculty of Journalism at the Corvinus University of Budapest. Currently, she is a columnist, marketing writer, and copywriter, working with 1ws.com and other well-known corporations, blogs, and characters. Follow her on Twitter, and read the personal blog.