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Is it possible someone more introverted to get a career in the business field?

#business #career #marketing #internship

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Lucie’s Answer

The short answer I would give is: of course Tyreh!
Introverts are people and people have skills! Thinking about skillset rather than personality is I think a good way to start answering your question. Business is a very broad term so i would start by framing a little bit the term (sales being very different than marketing for example).
Also being an introvert means many different things depending on the person you are talking to. Some people will default to introvert = shy or anti-social; I disagree, I think there are as many types of introverts as there are extraverts (and they are not all sunshine and loud all the time either).

There is an excellent book I recommend: "Quiet: the Power of Introvers" from Susan Cain
It really depicts how introverts are a key part of any company! They might not be the loudest at a party but they are strong business contributors.

Hope this helps,
Cheers
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Amy’s Answer

Absolutely Tyreh!

I've been working in different business fields throughout my 30-year career life, like Finance, Marketing, Design, and Product Management. As an introvert myself, I understand that it takes time to warm up and get comfortable with socializing with others especially newly meet people. I stay in a listening mode most of the time. But because of that, I'm able to listen actively, think deeply, and contribute to my work with well thought-out perspectives. So being an introvert helps me stay focused and create quality work.

Throughout my career, I constantly push myself out of my comfort zone - going outside to meet and talk to people. I signed up classes/conferences to meet people with similar interests so it's easy to have a conversation to share my thoughts and learn from others. A few things I did that I've found super helpful in my career:
1. Joined improv classes to learn some skills about how to communicate and build courage to reach out.
2. Volunteer to coach others through empathy so it's natural to open up and be myself.
3. Set up regular time to catch up with co-workers. Even a 15-min chitchat is super helpful. Make it casual.

Don't just listen to me, here are five super successful introverts for your reference:
Warren Buffett, Larry Page, Steve Wozniak, Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk
https://www.truity.com/blog/5-super-successful-introverts-and-what-they-did-right

Embrace who you are. Your authentic self will allow you to achieve so much and more, so don’t worry. I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors!

~Amy


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Ray’s Answer

Hi Tyreh-

As others have indicated on this thread, it is absolutely possible and, even more so, great for introverts to work in business alongside extroverts. The diversity of perspectives and approaches that both introverts & extroverts bring leads to richer discussions and better outcomes.

I would also recommend the Quiet book because I think it very directly helps answer the question you are asking.

From one fellow introvert to another, all the best to you!

Kind Regards,

Ray
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Kashif’s Answer

It seems there are several great answers. Here is my advice on the subject. Introverts and the concept of Introverts does not mean that there is any field where you are not able to excel. The people may be introvert however they could speak as a master on the topic, as an introvert, you could bring great analytical skills, subject matter expertise, and can also be a leader in the business. The business leaders I know some may not do a Smalltalk, however, they bring value to concrete conversations, these leaders can speak when it is needed, these leaders show more empathy to their teams and these leaders show great success. So this is a mindset question, if you are in growth mindset then being introvert does not hinder in your professional or personal growth.
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Emily’s Answer

Great question! The good news is that in the business world there is a mix of introverts and extroverts. Both bring amazing skills and talents to the corporate world. For example, there are introverted accountants and extroverted accountants. An extroverted accountant might eventually focus career on business development for example, to win new accounting clients. An introverted accountant might have a wonderful career focused on the very technical aspects of delivering world class accounting service to their clients. As you can see, there are fantastic paths for both. Best of luck!!
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Adrian’s Answer

Absolutely, introversion is conceivable in the corporate world. Introversion is common among successful executives, especially CEOs and entrepreneurs. Nonetheless, introversion may provide obstacles in some parts of the corporate world, such as networking and public speaking.

Building contacts and excelling in many fields, including business, requires networking. Introverts may find networking more difficult than extroverts, but they may still be effective if they identify networking opportunities that correspond with their personality and abilities. For instance, an introvert may feel more comfortable networking using online platforms such as LinkedIn or by attending small, targeted events as opposed to huge, packed conferences.

Public speaking is another business domain where introverts may have difficulties. Introverts may, nevertheless, become great communicators and presenters with practice and preparation. Several introverted executives who have achieved success have learned strategies to control their nervousness and produce persuasive presentations.
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BRIAN’s Answer

The answer is definitely yes!

In the business world there are many roles, which are considered individual contributor roles, meaning you tend to own your own portion of work. Data Analytics, Software Development, and some Finance roles are examples.

Additionally, as you work individually, you will surely have opportunities that put you in positions to partner with others, which over time will help build comfort in working with others.
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Jennifer’s Answer

There are so many types of jobs in business, any one can be a part of the business field.

Labels so many times cut us short of what we could do because we start to fall into the definition the world might decide for that label. I would suggest that you look at what you like and don't like. I believe there are varying levels of each type of person we are and that could sometimes change based on the day or the environment. With the age of technology today, focusing on what you like such as math, art, individual sports, etc. Then you can look for a job that will allow you to be who you are as well as enjoy what you like. Some jobs will allow you to engage with groups via chat or email or in small sections of your day allowing your to re-energize if being around a lot of people starts to get exhausting.

I enjoy being at home and if I go out, it want it to be with a small group or people (sometimes as small as 1). Limiting how much I am exposed to many people helps me to feel safe. But I have also found, some situations with larger people where my role is more of an observer, is just as exciting and educational but doesn't take me too far outside my comfort zone.

Continue to examine your likes/dislikes and needs without the label and hopefully you will be able to focus on all your many strengths.

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David’s Answer

Yes, it is possible to be introverted and yet still successful in business - you just have to find your niche. There are many types of jobs that cater to these types of personalities such as researcher, analyst and even CEO. I recommend taking the Myers Briggs test that will help you understand whether you gain energy from human interactions (extrovert) or lose energy from human interactions (introvert).

There are attributes that are actually helpful with being introvert including focus, attention to detail, listening, empathy, etc. You can always build on your abilities to get more comfortable with human interactions while on the job by taking on assignments that will exercise this muscle (e.g. speaking up in meetings, making presentations, volunteering to join committees both inside/outside work).

Good luck!
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Juliana’s Answer

Absolutely, Tyreh! :)
I am an introvert myself and I have been working in Business Strategy for 6 years now.
At the beginning of my career, I realized that there were more extroverts than introverts at my team and this made me question if Business was a career for me, although, with time, I realized that being an introvert made me think, work and behave differently than a lot of people on my team, and that was actually a great thing! Business teams need diversity of ideas, and ways of thinking. This means that teams with a mix of introverted and extroverted people can be very strong and powerful! If you consider a career in business, being an introvert should never be a blocker.

Juliana recommends the following next steps:

Search online for great leaders who are introverted and get inspired by their stories
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Michael’s Answer

Hi Tyreh!

I definitely fall in the introvert category. I have been working in the finance / accounting field for 10 years, and have been able to develop a lot of "extroverted skills" despite this. My main advice to you is to not try to find a job so that you avoid interacting with people. Looking back, I probably pursued a career in finance because i envisioned myself number crunching alone all day, but little did I know I'd be in meetings and working on teams all day long! No matter what job you get, you are going to end up interacting with people, especially the more you advance in your career. I've found my technical skills become less and less important as I've advanced, and it has become more about leadership, building relationships, and teamwork.

My advice to you is to pursue a job in business if that is what interests you, and don't sweat the fact that you are introverted. You will be doing what you like and I guarantee as you grow older and mature, you will build an extroverted skill set (even if you cant imagine it now).

Hope this Helps!
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Sarah M.’s Answer

I absolutely agree with the others here - it is definitely possible to find a career in business as an introvert. It takes all kinds of people in an organisation to be successful, and in tune with the needs of customers. Diversity of thought, experience and knowledge is very important, as are an understanding of learning styles, and how information is processed and received.

Will you find it challenging at times to "fit in" with the more extroverted members of a team? Probably. But it's definitely doable, and you may be surprised at the things you can achieve. I identify as an introvert (ISTJ on the Myers Briggs scale), and I would say that my introversion is just one part of my personality and preferences. There are things someone how is more introspective, detailed or "quiet" can achieve that may not come naturally to others, and that is a benefit.

I sometimes get nervous when I need to do presentations, speak with new people, and so on, but because I believe in the value of my role, and my work, I am able to push through this, and deliver. I may go home and want to withdraw from the world afterwards for a while to recharge, rather than celebrate loudly, but I find a great sense of accomplishment in going beyond what might have been expected of me, and any barrier I might have put in place for myself. Working in an environment where you know your voice is respected is incredibly valuable and rewarding.

"Quiet" by Susan Cain is indeed a great book, and I do recommend it. I'd also recommend learning about other types of personalities - in Myers Briggs, they also offer advice on how to work with people of other personality types, and give you more in depth understanding of your personality beyond just "introspective" - learning more about this and others will allow you to more effectively communicate your needs, and to understand others and find a middle ground to get along.
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Jacqueline’s Answer

hi Tyreh, absolutely and i can agree with what many others have commented here. Introversion isn't an disadvantage , it is a strength :) that you can harness once you are aware of it. We behave differently with different people in social and work settings. Some of us take time to warm up. some of prefer small groups. Introversion and extroversion are also ways of internalizing our thoughts ; some of us prefer to think internally before we articulate. Some may prefer talking it out loud to validate their beliefs. These are different styles, there is no need for a label to stereotype because we also behave differently depending on settings.

In business situations, value isn't about dominating discussions. it is about the quality of your contribution - being an introvert could be a way to help you engage in smaller but impactful discussions. If you feel that you need more time to prepare to articulate your thoughts, it is ok to ask for more time . Others will appreciate you thoughtfully taking the time to consider, making the interaction even more meaningful. In social settings, if you feel drained, step away to recharge when you need, you will find yourself more energized. Just be mindful of your own energy and believe in the value you bring.

Focus on what you will learn through interactions with certain individuals. My belief is that anyone can be successful in business, roles are not limited and things always gets easier when relationships start to be build and there are discussion focused on the work itself.

hope this helps. GO GO GO!
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Angelica Rossana’s Answer

Over the years, I have come to accept the following definition for introverted vs. extroverted based on Myers-Briggs (search for MBTI):
Introverted - A person who replenishes their energy by being by themselves
Extroverted - A person who replenishes their energy by being with other people

However, it is understandable that given the above definition, a lot of people tend to think introverted people are always the quiet ones and extroverted people are always the opposite.

But when you start thinking about these definitions, your self-limiting thoughts about "can I have a career in business, etc." because of your introversion will hopefully be reduced because how you replenish your energy has nothing to do with your capability and potential for success in any field. Sure you may think, "Oh, I wish I was an extrovert so I would be a successful salesperson." But what makes a salesperson good? Is it really solely because they're a natural around people or is it because they know what they're selling and are able to share that with potential customers? Extroverts may have a slight advantage for the latter because of the former but that doesn't mean introverts are unable to do the latter at all.

I encourage you to instead focus your thoughts on "do I enjoy working in business, etc.?" because as long as you're passionate about something, you will develop the confidence to share what you do and what you know and that will come across to others just fine even if you think you're not a "natural" around people because of your introversion.

Hope this helps but please feel free to reach out if you have additional questions!


Angelica Rossana recommends the following next steps:

Find out your MBTI (there's some resources online to take this test for free) so you can read some resources about your personality type and how to work with your strengths and improve upon your perceived weaknesses
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Michelle’s Answer

Hi Tyreh!

Yes, of course! I work in Financial Services at a Wealth Management firm and while I wouldn't consider myself an introvert (I do have my introverted moments for sure, though), many of my colleagues definitely are. There are many different roles and they each have differing levels of engagement with clients and other employees. In fact, there are many positions in research, analysis, reporting, etc. that have no client interaction and even the teams you engage with regularly can be quite small.

For many roles in wealth management, I would say that attention to detail and diligence in follow-through and work product are more important than having an extroverted personality. I think as you grow more confident in your career, you may find that as you seek to share your expertise, you may find yourself being a bit more outgoing as well.

Hope this helps and best of luck!
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Thilini’s Answer

Of course! There are many benefits of being an introvert, and while you may sometimes feel overpowered by extroverts at work, it's important to remember that everyone brings unique and valuable skills to the table. I'm an introvert and have received positive feedback from managers on some thing that skew more 'introvert':

1. We often take time to digest and contemplate ideas thoughtfully before we vocalize how we feel. At the beginning of my career, I was often told to "speak up more", but as my peers got to know me, they realized I do speak up, it just takes me longer to think through what I want to say. The benefit of this is that when you do finally speak, it's often well thought out and insightful.

2. Because introverts internalize a lot of their feelings before showing it to other people, we often appear calm & collected, even under pressure. This has been greatly valued by many teams that I have been on - especially when things are tense or stressful, we don't add fuel to the fire, but rather bring an even-keeled approach to the team. Sometimes this can come off like you don't care, but if you strike the right balance it can be very useful and appreciated in times of stress.

You should also remember that being an introvert doesn't mean you're not good with people or not social. It just means you approach certain situations differently, and gain your energy from being alone. Just remember to give yourself the alone time you need to recharge when necessary!
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Ben’s Answer

My answer to you is: yes.

Everyone has its own style, most of the time, it is your determination and accumulated efforts decides your success.

Introverted may appear to be less 'competitive', but remember, when one speaks, he/she is not listening. Keep learning mind and stick with key principles in your own industry, build your old 'Pyramid' in your unique style.

Set your goals/milestones, work with team/people to achieve it.
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