Joining me today on the Mads Singers Management Podcast is Jo Rawbone of Flourishing Introverts. Like myself, Jo is an introvert. However, she is the master of introverts and advocates for introverts in the workplace.
Jo is based in the United Kingdom and has been a management trainer and coach facilitator since 1987. Initially working for British Telecom, Jo left the company in 1994 to pursue her career. Although she has jokingly said that she is unemployable, Jo has focused and grown in her chosen niche. This has also made Jo mad enough because there were many negative connections in being an introvert. Many introverts were often shunned and excluded from meetings, team buildings, and even promotions compared to their extrovert peers.
Frequently, most extroverts will almost always be in a sales job or work as a salesperson. However, Jo believes that introverts can excel in being a salesperson because they tend to ask the right questions, which can pique a customer’s interest or immediately serve a customer what they need. But because of their shy and reserved nature, many employers tend to pass that opportunity to their more extroverted or outgoing peers even though they may not have enough experience or knowledge about the position.
While we need to get rid of our preconceived notions about what introverts and extroverts can have, I believe there are specific fields where introverts can excel. But rather than sorting out where people belong, let people find their comfort level to discover their strengths and weaknesses. Who knows, that person you’ve been putting in the back may be an undiscovered salesman.
As observed by Jo and me, most managers and business owners tend to hire people who share their likeness. It is also why at times, it fails to add variety to their team and adjust to the needs of their team accordingly.
While different people may want or seek other things, we must find what and where we are comfortable with to flourish in life. Although it may seem daunting at first, it’s essential that we take action rather than wait for the perfect conditions to set off our plans and goals.
- Mads says it’s essential to get the right people in the right roles. – 03:36
- Jo believes that we should eliminate our preconceived notions about what jobs introverts and extroverts can have. – 04:32
- Mads believes that different teams need different styles of management- 07:53
- Jo shares that she likes to enable managers to flex and move elegantly between management and leadership styles so that they can fill what’s needed in that moment rather than bragging about who they are or what they are. – 08:47
- Mads says it’s crucial to utilize a person’s strengths as much as possible- 10:08
- Mads says that business owners should learn how to communicate with their staff even if they don’t seem the approachable type. – 11:05
- Jo says it’s essential to take note of where we get our energy from- 14:35
- Jo says that it’s not about getting out of our comfort zones but finding out what we are comfortable with, what’s on the outer edge, beyond that, and what’s way out there. – 17:20
- Jo adds that if we continue working on our outer edge, our comfort zone expands – 17:34
- Jo shares her mantra: Done is better than perfect. She adds that it’s vital that we take action first because we can continually refine our work and processes as we go along. 21:37
- The Introverts Edge: How the Quiet and Shy Can Outsell Anyone: by Matthew Pollard with Derek Lewis