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Max Gorbachev
Max Gorbachev

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5 Tips to Succeed as an Introvert in the Workplace 

Introverts in a cutthroat workplace environment often have to face interesting challenges when it comes to being seen and heard by bosses and coworkers. While many introverts will prefer to be just left alone to do the job, a reputation as being shy and reserved and doing the minimum of interaction with people at the office does not bode well for a person's chances of getting noticed for a promotion at work.  

If moving up is one of your goals this year but you identify as an introvert, read on to know how you can still thrive and succeed in a workplace where extroversion usually gets you ahead of the pack. 

Treat positive social interactions as a skill you need to master

Starting conversations can be difficult even for people who don't identify as introverts. The good thing about positive interactions is that you are not doomed to be uncomfortable about starting and engaging in conversations with others. You can treat social interactions as skills you can master with time and practice. This simple shift in mindset can make it easier to overcome the challenge of awkward social interactions because they're not innate personality traits that you can't do anything about. 

Use positive words

One good tip to use when if you want to engage in more personal interactions is to use positive words. Drop compliments on co-workers and friends, lead with positive observations when starting a conversation, and avoid negative comments when you can. Positive words help keep conversations light and often allow the other person to feel comfortable and free to continue the interaction with you. 


Like any skill, practice is perhaps the only way to get better and more comfortable about starting conversations with other people, even people who you see daily at work. The good thing about practice is that you have countless opportunities during the day to do so, whether you are in or out of the office. With practice, you can get comfortable hearing your voice and being in situations where you are engaging in a dialogue with another person. 

Set bite-sized goals 

Taking things slowly is an effective strategy to ease into feeling comfortable engaging with other people in the workplace. For example, you can set a goal of engaging with at least two people at the office and speaking up at least once during the daily office meeting. These are doable, bite-sized goals that are not too overwhelming but will still force you to practice your engagement skills. 

Play up your other strengths 

Forcing yourself to be someone you are not the entire time you are in the office is not the only way to get noticed by your bosses and peers. There's no doubt that faking extroversion can affect your mental and psychological health too, and probably not in a good way. While making efforts to be more engaged and outgoing will always benefit your work relationships, you can also play up your other strengths so you can be more competitive at work. Offer to take on extra projects that fit your special skill set, for example, or be ready with deliverables before the deadline. Do these consistently, and you will leave a mark that can help you move a few steps up your career ladder. 

Being an introvert in a workplace where personal interactions are required does not mean that introverts are at a disadvantage when they don't conform to outgoing office culture. If you treat positive engagement as a skill that you can learn and you practice until you become comfortable, you can stand out as visibly as your most extroverted coworker. 

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