If you’re an introvert, certain aspects of a 9-5 job may be tricky for you.
Working in a large company with over 100 employees, working in an open office space, those networking events that are mandatory to attend, long days at the office and meetings that you have been specifically asked to head may have a different effect on you than your other co-workers. Don’t get me wrong, being an introvert isn’t a bad thing and neither is it a flaw, it just can be a bit challenging, especially when you’re working a 9-5 job.
In this article, you’ll find some tips to help you improve your career as in introvert:
1/ Network The Way You Know How
If you hate going to networking events full of strangers you don’t exactly feel comfortable talking to, that’s fine. Simply don’t go to them, but instead find a way to network that feels right for you. If you prefer to chat online, you can join professional groups on either Facebook or LinkedIn where you can identify who you’re most likely to have shared professional interests with. Or, if there’s someone whose career you admire, you can send them a message introducing yourself and asking to meet up for brunch or lunch, at least just an hour at most with someone whose brain you’d like to pick should be more productive for you.
2/ Take Personal Breaks At Work
As an introvert, you can’t help but crave alone time especially at a work place where everything and everyone is so fast paced. One of the most important steps you can take to improve your career is by taking some alone during the day to just rejuvenate. If you’re ever in this situation you can either take your lunch break alone to help you get the recovery time you need during a busy day, or you can put your headphones in while getting work done (you don’t necessarily have to be listening to music) just to indirectly communicate with others that you’re not trying to talk during that period. Doing this will silence all the outside noise and help you work and focus better and most importantly, will help you be more productive.
3/ Communicate With Your Co-workers
It’s very easy for people to label you as “rude” or “stuck up” if you’d rather do things by yourself and not necessarily be excited for team/ after work hangouts. If you’re drained after a long day of work and decline heading out for drinks with your co-workers, most likely they will interpret it as something else, especially if you decline going to these hangouts often.
It can be very annoying having to explain yourself, but in order to have peace in the office and to avoid miscommunication, its better to communicate properly with your co-workers on why you’ll rather not participate in certain activities. On another hand, so you don’t feel so left out, you can make yourself feel included by showing you care. You can sometimes bring in pastries to the office or cheer your team members on after a job well done, because you can’t succeed at your job if you and your colleagues don’t get along and you don’t want them having the wrong impression of you/your character.
4/ Spend Your Alone Time Wisely
Being a good observer is is a key advantage to being an introvert. Take advantage of this ability to find important areas at work where you or your team can improve. Refer back to point 2: During your personal breaks, spend time thinking about how you can handle certain office situations better or how you can excel better at a task that has been given to you. If possible, you can also speak to your boss to find out if you can be given a work-from-home day at least once every two weeks, so you can be more productive.
5/ Choose The Right Job
If you’re working a shitty job that has a toxic office environment, sorry to break it to you but everything that has been listed out in this article will be impossible for you to achieve, because from your boss to your supervisor to HR, no one will care.
If you find that your job often makes you feel drained or uncomfortable, it may be time to find another job. As an introvert, you’ll generally prefer jobs that require little to no interaction with colleagues, but it doesn’t mean you can’t excel at other jobs, its just important that you choose a job that suits your introverted tendencies.