TLDR: There is a misuse of the term humble, often seen at award ceremonies. It’s often a desire to make oneself appear humble (a good trait, but saying you are humble probably proves you’re not), or it’s an unintended insult to the organisers of the award. Humility is a great leadership power, which many introverts possess without realising; where many others claim to have humility while demonstrating how their arrogance and oversized ego make them poor leaders.
Here are number of relevant articles, which I hope you find interesting.
Introversion is a personality factor which is at least partly explained by biochemical make up. Neurotransmitters are chemicals we all have inside us. Two which are highly relevant to introversion and extroversion.
Dopamine helps us prepare for time with people and challenges. Introverts are more sensitive to it than extroverts, so get tired around people more quickly
Acetylcholine increases alertness and blood flow to the prefrontal cortex, where introverts have thicker grey matter. This is where abstract thought and decision-making are seen.
So introversion / extroversion is real. Introverts going to find some things harder than extroverts and be better at others. A good leader will help their whole team work on their joint strengths.
How do you lead people to get the most from all of them?
There’s a fundamental problem with the idea that being authentic at work is the solution to team performance and something a leader has to show and strive for. It’s an idea which has been overstated and seems to have more in common with the modern trend of over sharing and splurging personal feelings on social media.
Introverts are no more, or less authentic, than extroverts; even though they may spend less time-sharing personal views and feelings. In fact they value being part of a close knit team.
Looking at what authenticity is reveals that psychological safety at work needs to come first and that this is what a leader should strive for, rather than authenticity.
How are you working on the psychological safety in your team?
Many people struggle to get introverts to communicate with them. This can be especially frustrating in business when a leader wants some of quieter team members to “open up more”. The benefit of doing so is less frustration (both leader and introvert), better team work, better productivity and better staff retention.
Understanding key introvert / extrovert differences (internal processing, people energy and preference for quieter locations) will allow you help others communicate more easily to (plan in advance, allow them more time to reply, and create suitable breaks). The article ends with 10 specific tips to improve a conversation with an introvert.
I need new staff to stay longer and be useful more quickly.
New staff who leave before, or just after they’ve become proficient is expensive and very “frustrating”. They’re either leaving because it’s the wrong job for them (bad recruitment), they’re the wrong people for you (bad recruitment), or because they’ve not been looked after and trained well enough (bad onboarding).
If you’re looking to keep them longer, make your onboarding process more systematic, more suitable for introverts, and more obvious to all staff (so everybody see more development opportunities).
Creating a simple programme (checklist of subjects, dates and people) allows you to systemise your induction programme, so you don’t do all the work and your new starters get a consistent, high quality, start to their career with you. That will make them more likely to stay for longer and more productive more quickly.
Help introverts (and everybody else) find their feet in the company more quickly, improving productivity and saving costs.