Recommended Reads: Book explores the strengths of introverts
“Do not underestimate the determination of a quiet man,” is a quote from Iain Duncan Smith, British politician.
The quiet one in the background used to be in the shadow of the attention getters in the world. This book insists those introverts can be highly effective influencers when they make the most of their own natural strengths. The author points out the strengths of being an introvert, and then presents descriptive examples of successful ways to use these strengths. Her examples include some surprisingly introverted celebrities. The author states that half the U.S. population is introverted. Instead of struggling to act like extroverts, the author suggests that there are four workplace trends which indicate that the time for quiet influence to be more successful than ever is now.
So why is now a great time to be an introvert in the workplace? The flattened work organization means networking is a personal responsibility. One-to-one connections are strengths of introverts. Increased global diversity means different ways of connecting with people, more personally and in deference to cultures, which are areas well suited to introverts. The virtual world and online social media are tools that introverts can excel in. And heightened competition means a need to listen intently, which the author identifies as something introverts do well.
Early in the book there is a short test to determine if you are an introvert. If you are, you’ll closely identify with so much of what the author writes. This book is also interesting for people who have a son or daughter or friend or other person in their life whom they have never quite understood, and now you see that person is an introvert.
The six strengths of “quiet influencers” include – taking quiet time, preparation, engaged listening, focused conversations, writing, and thoughtful use of social media. The author discusses how influencers can use a mix of these six qualities for success, and she warns about the dangers of their overuse.
Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, Ph.D. is an Atlanta-based author, and speaker, and executive coach who is hailed as a “champion for introverts.” Jennifer works with business professionals across a wide array of industries leading seminars and coaching individuals and groups. Her client list includes NASA, Coca-Cola, Home Depot, Pfizer, Time Warner Cable, AT&T, and more. She is committed to helping introverts unleash their inner leadership voice.
Introverts are continually asked to adapt to an extrovert-centric workplace that rewards being out there and on stage. They plead, how can I be me and still make a difference? Jennifer Kahnweiler’s book will show you, with a plan and through examples, how to stop trying to act like extroverts and instead make the most of your natural, quiet strengths.
Thereby hangs a tale . . . .
– By Wendy Kendall
Wendy Kendall is a writer, project manager and volunteer at the Edmonds Library. She’s enjoyed living in Edmonds for over 20 years. Follow her via her blog here or on Twitter @wendywrites1.