Job Hunting for Introverts
The more we learn about ourselves and how we relate to the world and to others, the better we can plan our life to serve us more comfortably. We can even choose a career path that meshes well with our disposition, allowing the job to benefit us, instead of taking from us and causing unhappiness.
What Is an Introvert?
It is believed that most people possess traits of both introverts and extroverts, but most often lean towards one or the other. Introverts, as a whole, are usually more reserved, sensitive, and contemplative.
The typical introvert does not adjust as well or as quickly to social situations as those who are extroverted by nature. It is also believed that those who are introverted possess higher excitation levels, which is why they tene to try to avoid overstimulating environments. Does this sound like you? If so, you may be an introvert.
What Introverts Should Avoid
For any employee, working in the wrong position or environment is a surefire path to dissatisfaction, unhappiness, and even burnout. This is why it is so crucial to apply for positions that are a good fit for your personality and work style, as well as to ensure that your workplace will also be a good fit for you.
Environments with Outside Distractions
The environment of a job is just as important as the job description itself. If your environment is not conducive to how you work, you will struggle to be productive and will not be able to focus on the tasks required of you.
For introverts, open floorplans can prove to be quite distracting. The noise level and bustling activity may be stimulating for extroverted workers, but are a deterrent for introverted employees.
Open office layouts are more popular these days, so this is certainly something to watch out for and can be something you ask about during the interview process.
Certain careers favor collaborative work, especially if you are working as part of a team, rather than on an individual project. This can be draining for introverts, who typically work better on their own as this affords them their best level of focus.
They also may find larger groups distracting, but will still be able to be productive if working one-on-one. Introverts are also very independent, so are typically able to successfully manage their own workload and set their own deadlines when left to their tasks.
Client Facing Work
As client facing work requires a lot of interaction, this may not be the best fit for an introvert who does not have strong interpersonal skills. Client facing work typically consists of phone calls with clients and in-person meetings, such as sales jobs or customer service.
It also requires an upbeat, outgoing personality. This can be draining for an employee if it is not a good fit for their personality.
Even if you look great on paper, many interviewers will make their final judgement based on the in-person interview. While interviewing may be more difficult for introverts, this does not mean you won’t be able to make a good impression. With a different approach, you’ll be able to enter an interview with confidence.
Introverts tend to do more prep work than their extroverted counterparts. Use this skill to your advantage. Do you research before going into an interview and arm yourself with knowledge. Having prior knowledge of the company, the job expectations, and more will help you in discussing the position, and interviewers like to see prospects who have prepared and seem invested in the job opportunity. This knowledge may also help you in the negotiations round if you are offered the position.
Play Up Your Strengths
Don’t try to act more like an extrovert or to falsely represent yourself. Introverts are known for their self-awareness, so take the time to let your own unique strengths come through. Know your personal brand and be able to articulate it clearly. What are your strengths? What are you good at? This is something that you can practice describing prior to the interview. Once these strengths are made clear, you can ensure that they are valued in the negotiations stage as well.
Practice Your Elevator Pitch
An elevator pitch is a quick speech that outlines an idea or proposal, the name coming from the concept of it being brief enough to get your idea across while in the elevator with someone. Writing out a succinct elevator pitch to practice will help you speak clearly about yourself and your accomplishments. It should also help you to show an interviewer how you will bring value to their company if hired.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can an introvert get a job?
Know yourself when looking at job listings, and be able to recognize what will and will not be a good fit for you. Prepare thoroughly for your job interview. Extroverts may be able to wing an interview conversation, while for an introvert, it is better to “do the homework” in advance and practice.
What jobs are good for introverts?
Positions that focus on independent work instead of group settings, and one-on-one interaction rather than group interaction. Accounting, graphic design, writing, and engineering are all good career options for introverts.
Is it hard to find a job as an introvert?
It may be harder for an introvert to shine in an in-person interview, which is why it is so important to prepare prior to the interview and to do your research. Coming in with knowledge of the company, the position, and with some interview responses rehearsed will help to put you at ease. It will also impress interviewers to see that you have done your due diligence to find out more information.
What careers should introverts avoid?
Client facing jobs and sales jobs may not be a good fit for introverts. These could also cause burnout. Real estate, teaching, event planning, and retail sales are careers that should be typically avoided by introverts.