To be labeled an introverted intrapeneur is quite intriguing to say the least. Some may ask, “What the heck is that?” Others may secretly try to say it five times without getting tripped up for amusement’s sake. But tongue twister and ambiguity aside, there’s something to this combination when it comes to personal branding.
Myers-Briggs touches on the psychology of introverts (introversion) as people who are more reserved and get their energy from processing life in their head; as opposed to extroverts (extraversion) who are more outgoing and get their energy by being around other people.
When you take the term “intrapreneur,” which is a forward-thinking professional who uses their entrepreneurial skills within a company, there is clearly a need for both personality types in the workplace.
Imagine a room with both introverts and extroverts: The introverts are looking at the extroverts like, “Ugh, why are they always so extra all the time!” and the extroverts look at the introverts like, “Goodness, you can find more personality in the royal guards at Buckingham Palace.” It’s like a badge of honor, or dishonor, to be one or the other depending on who you’re talking too.
Although there are advantages to both sides of the coin, here’s why introverted intrapreneurs succeed when it comes to mastering their careers and personal brand.
1. They make strategic moves.
It can sometimes seem like introverts are aloof to what it takes to climb up the career ladder because they are more laid back. It’s often believed that the loudest or most aggressive person will get noticed, but that’s not always true. A lot of times introverts focus on exactly what they need to reach their goals.
They pay special attention where it’s necessary and avoid unnecessary distractions such as non-strategic alliances, gossip, or office politics. What appears to be a very laid back nature is actually a covert bull’s-eye approach.
2. They build solid relationships.
Introverts are truly the opposite of extroverts in regards to interacting with other people. If you go to a networking meeting, you can easily pick out an introvert because they are either laying low in a small group or quietly sitting alone pretending to look comfortable. When it comes to expanding your personal brand, it’s better to have a few people that know you well than a lot of people who don’t know much about you.
Remember, introverts can be just as savvy at communicating as extroverts; they just prefer to have more focused conversations in smaller circles. In doing so, they are able to really connect with colleagues and business partners in a way that stands out more than superficial interactions.
3. They reflect before they react.
Introverts have the advantage of processing information internally, which means they are slower to react, especially in challenging situations. A huge part of navigating through your career is managing various types of personalities—and that usually means the coworker who makes you wish you can extend an invitation to meet outside to “settle” your issues. Whereas an extrovert may be quicker to react, an introvert is going to take the time to see what’s the best way to address the situation.
In a case where the first reaction may not be the best, they save the embarrassment of saying or doing the wrong thing.
4. They solve problems.
One of the key traits of an intrapreneur is being able to identify the gaps, which is what introverts do naturally. Introverts are always thinking and analyzing information to come to a sensible conclusion. When something doesn’t make sense, they will think about various factors to put the pieces of the puzzle together. Introverts are able to take a step back and work through all sides of a problem.
Introverts are able to successfully lead and facilitate out-of-the-box solutions that produce results. This skill is very helpful when it comes to managing projects and closing the gaps.
5. They don’t reveal it all.
The thing about dealing with introverts is that you don’t always know what they are thinking. Some of the best career moves are done in silence. If an introvert is unhappy with their job or searching for a better opportunity, it won’t always be advertised for discussion.
Being too vocal about certain things like not liking your manager or hating your job will bring a lot of attention to you for the wrong reasons. Sometimes the people that appear to want to help you can be the ones that sabotage your next move.
Introverts are very selective in what they say and who they say it too. Instead of saying too much about how they feel, they will quietly work on making a power move.
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