An introverts guide to navigating a career & surviving the workplace.

introverts guide

An introverts guide to navigating a career & surviving the workplace.


As an introvert, navigating your way through your career, and sometimes just everyday in the workplace, can be quite truly overwhelming. Office environments can make us feel drained, leave us tactically timing our brew rounds to avoid small talk in the kitchen, and just the word 'interview' can send us into a mild state of panic.

Introverts are still more than valuable members of the workforce, though. We may not be the most 'out-going' or loudest people in the office, but we certainly have great listening skills, have our own, unique leadership styles, will think about our colleagues and staff a lot, and quite often will make fabulous desginers and analysts if you ever need one.

However, it's the things that don't come naturally to us that are the things we often need the most help with. You may not think it now, but you can network with others without getting too overwhelmed. You can lead a meeting without having a nervous breakdown first, and you can have a successful career without having to seek the limelight all of the time.

And so, here are a few tips for navigating your career and the workplace as an introverted gal!


Take Five

Offices can be very busy and loud places with lots of different things going on at once. Whether you take yourself to a bathroom cubicle for five minutes of peace, head outside for some fresh air, or lock yourself in a meeting room for a 'call' so that no one can disturb you, it's totally okay to need a few minutes of quiet by yourself to re-charge, escape people, or just to give yourself a little 'you've got this' pep talk before a big meeting.

Trust us, we all do it.

introverts guide to your career


Network Online

The idea of having to turn up at a networking event, go up to strangers and introduce yourself, and then make conversation with said strangers can be an introverts actual real-life nightmare.

Thankfully, we now live in a digital world that only continues to grow. Be active on social media and engage and interact with people in your industry, and of course, make sure your LinkedIn profile is as good as it can be.

Establishing online relationships is as easy as ever now, and those online conversations can often lead to real-life ones that aren't half as scary!

Take little steps

This is a trick that you can apply to anything - from having to get yourself through an interview, to simply completing daily tasks - instead of thinking about it as one, big, scary thing that you have to get over, break it down into the smallest of steps.

You have to go meet a client? Okay, this is what you need to do:
Step 1: Walk over to the office.
Step 2: Ask for them at reception.
Step 3: Greet them and say hello.
Step 4: Sit down and get out your laptop or notebook.
Step 5: Go through the agenda one point at a time.

And before you know it, the meeting will be over and you've got through it! If there is a meeting or task that is making you anxious, break it down into very small, achievable steps instead.

Prepare

Prepare, prepare, prepare. Prepare for your interview (obviously!), prepare for meetings even if you're not leading them, prepare for your day, prepare for taking notes whenever you go and speak to someone, prepare for everything and anything in any way that you can and we can guarantee that you'll feel a whole lot better for it.

You may also be surprised how quickly you find that you don't need to prepare as much as you get used to everything and everyone around you. Meetings will start to not scare you as much and you'll get more confident in... ahem... winging it.

Find a job that suits you.

You could never leave the same industry throughout your whole career, and every office, job and employer you experience would still be very different. There are so many factors that can contribute as to whether a job is right for you or not - from the office culture, to management expectations, to generally how you're expected to carry out and execute your job role.

So, take notes during the interview and application process to decide whether a job would be good for you. For example, jobs with a requirement to pitch, make presentations or a meeting-driven culture is probably not for you if you're very introverted. Give yourself the best of starts and chances by finding a job that you love, by finding a role and an environment that will suit you and your personality.


 
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