A person performs best when his or her needs are met. It is therefore sometimes difficult for introverts in a world (and in the workplace) that is designed for the extroverted person. As an introvert, how can you ensure that you stand out in the workplace?
In short, it is by fully accepting yourself and focusing on what makes you good and what makes you happy.
You would almost forget it because of all the vacancies that ask about extroverted qualities such as “spontaneity”, but an introverted personality also has advantages in the workplace. For example, research shows that introverts are often more creative, are better at dealing with feedback, meet more deadlines and work better together. In addition, introverts can often listen and observe well.
Of course, it’s not that all extroverts are bad at working together and introverts are always creative. Often people are not 100 percent introverted or extroverted and these are more two ends of a spectrum where everyone falls somewhere in between. Still, it is good to remember that being an introvert brings benefits in the workplace just as well.
By accepting yourself, we mean that you focus on your strengths, instead of behaving like an extrovert in the workplace. That is exhausting and at the expense of your work. If you understand what you add in the workplace, you can only make it visible to others. Otherwise, you run the risk of getting fewer credits for your hard work.
Network your way
People often think of “networking” as seminars, lectures and networking drinks, where you meet like-minded people. Hell for introverts, because these kinds of events consume energy. Fortunately, networking is much more than that. For example, you can also network by having a coffee with someone one on one, connecting with people on LinkedIn and Facebook or joining a community.
Moreover, investing in your existing network is just as important as expanding your network. You do this, among other things, by responding to LinkedIn posts and keeping in touch with (former) colleagues. If we no longer work from home in the future, it also means joining the Vrijmibo every now and then. Have you been so broken up from a day of working in a noisy office garden that you have no energy for a Friday afternoon drink? Then show your colleagues in a different way that you care. For example, by bringing home-made baking on Monday morning.
Your network may be smaller than extroverts, but that doesn’t mean yours is less strong. On the contrary, if you pay enough attention to your contacts, your network may even be stronger.
Choose the right job
In one job, the introvert just comes into his own better than in another job. For example, a creative job where you have to work independently a lot is better for the average introvert than a job where you have a lot of customer contact. If you are tired to death at the end of the day and often feel uncomfortable, chances are you will be more comfortable elsewhere.
Are you very happy with your job and do you not want to make a career switch? Then create a work situation at your current job that you feel comfortable with. Maybe this means that you will continue to work from home partially in the future. Or that at the office you ensure that you are alone now and then, for example by starting earlier.
You will see that a job where you feel good about yourself will take you much further in your career than a job where you constantly walk on your gums.
Also read: 5 ways in which you can influence your happiness at work
Tessa Ham is an editor at WorkJuice.nl and writes for Metro about career and money.
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