In a work culture that focuses heavily on teamwork and communication, individual skills, creativity and independence are often overlooked.
Introverted job seekers are often the ones to bear the brunt of this bias because they are commonly misconceived to be too reserved, shy, thoughtful, aloof and too quiet to fit into a culture that prizes assertive, high energy, aggressive and vocal individuals.
But the truth is that it takes all sorts of people to build a strong team, and stereotyping has never really helped anyone.
In fact, introverts tend to be independent, creative, and productive by nature, and these very personality traits make them valuable and indispensable assets to any company. Hence, it is not a good idea for companies to casually dismiss or overlook introverts as employees.
It is time to add introverts to your ranks to gain new and valuable insights and increase productivity.
Why Do Introverts Make Good Employees?
Several personality traits make introverts different, and these can actually be a boon in an organisational setting. We talk about some such traits below –
1. Introverts are self-driven
Introverts tend to be self-driven and don’t need to wait for support from the whole team to take the initiative for a project. They don’t mind diving in alone. This makes for an ideal employee.Introverts tend to be self-driven and don’t need to wait for support from the whole team to take the initiative for a project. Click To Tweet
Because they often learn from observations, they also typically do not need a lot of assistance when taking on new projects or learning new skills.
2. Introverts can work alone
Not all projects are suitable for big teams. Sometimes projects need the solitude of an introvert to get them done.
Since introverts mostly prefer to work independently, they tend to focus deeply and produce high-quality work. Naci-Kayaoglu’s study in 2013 showed introverts consciously employ “goal-oriented specific behaviours” instead of expending their energy in interpersonal communication.
But make no mistake, introverts can also work well with others, although they would rather focus on the task itself rather than deal with the social aspect of working with a group of people.
3. They don’t have too many distractions
Introverts tend to lead a quieter life and indulge in activities that involve solitude. They often enjoy reading, gardening, crafting, writing, gaming, watching movies, or doing any other activity that’s performed alone more than extroverts as seen in the study by Diener, Larson, & Emmons (1984).
Such activities rejuvenate them and prepare them to come to work the next day without too many distractions and with a fresh mind.
4. Introverts put a lot of thought into their words
In today’s workplace, “thinking on one’s feet” is usually held in high esteem.
Extroverts and introverts have very different verbal styles. In a study done by Beukeboom, Tanis, & Vermeulen (2012), it was found that introverts focus more on facts, even though they speak less. Introverts also tend to process information more thoughtfully as compared to extroverts – they take time to understand ideas and weigh out all the options before arriving at a decision. However, many dismiss this trait as procrastination or inattention.
This is not so. Introverts have a very active inner thought process. So, not being talkative means when they do speak, they have probably clearly articulated how they want to respond. They also tend to talk only when they can contribute something of value.
This is a good quality to have in people working for you, because they would spend their time working and problem-solving rather than chatting or being involved in office politics.
5. Introverts can work well with extroverts
Introverts prefer to work quietly and present their work in a way that allows them to maintain their privacy.
They are often humble individuals and do not like to steal the limelight. This is invaluable because the whole team vying for attention and approval can sometimes be disastrous. So, teaming up an introvert with ideas with an extrovert who will be the face of the project can be an unbeatable combination.
6. Introverts tend to be creative
Introverts are often known to have a creative side – they tend to think outside the box.
Because they spend much time thinking and processing information, they come up with different ways to look at problems and solutions that other team members may overlook. Their novel way of looking at things can offer new insights during adverse scenarios and even chalk out innovative marketing strategies.
7. Introverts do not need tonnes of praises and acknowledgement
Because introverts get their buzz by accomplishing a task, they are less likely to need external rewards.
This means they do not need too much public acknowledgement, praise, and recognition. It is not that they do not appreciate compliments or social recognition- it is just that they do not value it as a motivator or a reward or find it as exciting as extroverts do.
Introverts tend to be driven by more personal, intellectual, creative payoffs or self-affirmation rather than inconsistent social motivators.Introverts tend to be driven by more personal, intellectual, creative payoffs or self-affirmation rather than inconsistent social motivators. Click To Tweet
8. Introverts can stay calm
Getting frazzled in stressful situations can be quite a drawback in an office environment. When levels of stress are high, they can be infectious and affect everyone on a team.
By nature, introverts tend to be calm and collected, and not get visibly emotional and upset in stressful situations. So, in situations when needed the most, introverts can hold it together and silently think of a way out.
9. They are good observers and listeners
We all know that introverts are typically quiet people, which is especially true when they are with a large group of people.
So, while they are not talking and interacting, they are observing and listening. And let’s face it, you can learn a lot more by actually observing and listening than you can do talking.
An introvert observes details that others may overlook. Hence, it is an indispensable skill to have in a team member.
Introverts have not always got a fair deal of acceptance in the workplace. They are often bypassed or side-lined because they are considered too quiet, shy, withdrawn and lack ambition.
But there’s a lot of evidence out there that shows introverted people are generally more intelligent and innovative on average.
If your company prizes creativity, independence, and productivity in its processes, don’t overlook the seemingly quiet and aloof ones. They may have just the qualities your company needs to succeed.