Introverts – indispensable team members

The last days, I found myself without motivation to write my promised post about teamwork applied to introversion. But today I got it back as I saw that at least one person liked my last post. Isn’t it enthralling that only such a simple thing (someone is pressing the like button) can be motivating? I think it is, what Anika mentioned about motivation in her post: “Together we can do it”. Knowing that there are people outside, who appreciate what I wrote, since it was something of personal interest to me, motivates me to continue.

Last time I promised to write about introverts as an indispensable team member. That can be applied to sports as well as to the work place.

Does personality determines the sport you play?

Since Introversion and extroversion is part of ones personality –a character trait- it is properly never going to be changed in its origin. One could think that people choose their sports according to their personality, like it is described on teachpe.com. According to this, introverts would like individual sports that need concentration and self-motivation whereas extroverts like team sports that are exciting and tend to be aggressive (e.g. rugby). Concluding from this thesis one could think that introverts are less able to interact in a team.

In my opinion that is just partly true and based on prejudices and assumptions. Lucky me, I found a post by Shannon Fleming. She writes about a research that reveals the total contrary. It discloses that participants of a volleyball team showed a great tendency of introversion.

…being reliable and thoughtful.  Learning to cooperate with other players and sharing the recognition for a win with other people tend to require being less bold and outgoing, and instead, being calmer, rational, and aware of surroundings.

But Shannon Fleming also presents another study that discovered again the contrary, which would coincide with the first thesis. Eventually, one can conclude that there is no rule that applies to introverts or extroverts. One cannot peg innies as less capable as extroverts concerning team sports. Even introverts are crucial for a sports team as they are analytical thinkers. Chrissie Giles provides us with an interview with Dr. Mark Bawden (sports psychologist) where it is pointed out that a captain of a sport team just needs to know if his team members are introverts/extroverts “to know how to play their strengths” appropriate.

Introverts can indeed be great leaders

Similar to Giles, Trish Smith applies this to business and presents a way to manage introverts and extroverts in workplace. Unfortunately, she ascribes the role of leadership just to extroverts –at least it seems to be. Therefore, I looked for introverts as leaders and I found an online article by Eliza Ridgeway that explains, “Why introverts can be great leaders”. Moreover, I provided you last time with two great examples of introverts as a leader and I again want to emphasis the blog by Lisa Petrilli who definitely made her way in Business and Leadership!

All we should do is learn to accept each other the way we are. Particularly, one should accept oneself. Everyone can find ones way in life as well as into business and leadership, even introverts! Like Tonya writes: “Don’t deal with you nature” and “focus on your strengths”!

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11 Comments

  1. Thank you so much for the mention, Julia, and all the best of success in 2012! Warmly, Lisa Petrilli

    Reply
  2. Hey Julia
    thanks for your great post:)
    I really enjoyed reading it as the topic is really personal, concerns everyone and touches us in our daily life.
    It is very appealing how you evaluate and interprete different professionals’ opinions and show the difficulty of coming up with one certain opinion and I totally agree with you that it is not of much importance as long as one is able to accept one’s character.
    To my mind, this is the most difficult thing in the whole problematic of being introverted or extroverted- being happy with how it is, especially because it is a natural characteristic of humans to compare to each other.
    What I learn from this post is that one has to ignore and stay unaffected by prejudices who peg one as introverted and therefore as impotent to lead or to interact in a team, as this can neither be supported nor confuted and as you were able to find sufficient proofs to undermine this thesis.
    It is really interesting to know you in personal and see your personal interest in this matters, but still being captivated by the topic on my own.
    Keep on working like this:)

    Reply
  3. Hi Julia!
    A very accessible guide to the mapping of cognitive differences in a business context is to be found here, in Abela’s http://www.extremepresentation.com/design/audience/. To make this even more interesting you might check out the feminist perspective on the stages of moral development I mentioned: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carol_Gilligan. Also, you might be interested in the special reading of Brown/Hagel book from an esoteric perspective: The Power of Pull and the rising feminine realm | awakening Sacred Flow http://bit.ly/wdXY6S
    Enjoy! -b

    Reply
  4. Thanks for the nice blog. It was very useful for me. Keep sharing such ideas in the future as well. This was actually what I was looking for, and I am glad to came here! Thanks for sharing the such information with us

    Reply
  5. Very useful info. Hope to see more posts soon!

    Reply
  6. Really cool post, highly informative and professionally written..Good Job

    Reply
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  1. The issue of team building « spogging

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