Tag Archives: introverted leader

Introverted and Extroverted Leaders

introverted and extroverted leaders Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg with COO Sheryl Sandberg

I am writing a new book on how to be successful in Introvert-Extrovert partnerships. In reviewing the research I came across a blog post I wrote 4 years ago. It is based on a NY Times article that describes the relationship between the CEO and COO of Facebook.  Here it is: 

An unlikely pair that works, Extrovert Sheryl Sandberg and Introvert Mark Zuckerberg, COO and CEO of Facebook, respectively are profiled in an article called Mark Zuckerberg’s Most Valuable Friend by Miguel Helft in the NY Times. I believe that these introverted and extroverted leaders have at least four key elements found in well oiled relationships.

1) Respect for  differences. Sandberg is an extrovert. Zuckerberg is an introvert. A lot of people choose to hire people who look exactly like them,” Mr. Zuckerberg says. “Here we just value balance a lot more.”

2) Loyalty – Ms. Sandberg defends her boss against his critics. She says he is warm underneath that reserved exterior. “He is shy and introverted and he often does not seem very warm to people who don’t know him, but he is warm,” Ms. Sandberg says of Mr. Zuckerberg, her voice rising with empathy. “He really cares about the people who work here.”

3) Coaching – They support each other by offering honest and direct feedback. They are not afraid to push back on decisions and provide emotional support. “At a technology conference this summer, for instance, Mr. Zuckerberg flopped during an onstage interview. He gave rambling answers to questions about Facebook’s privacy policies, became visibly nervous and started sweating profusely. After the interview, Ms. Sandberg encouraged him not to beat himself up over it, but to focus on parts of the interview that went well so he could do better next time….”

4) Frequent and Regular Meetings – In their Monday morning and Friday afternoon face to face meetings, they address strategy, personnel, deals and each other. There is just no getting around sitting down face to face to iron out differences and make decisions.  I am relieved to see these two social media leaders modeling conversation beyond the screen.

Update: When they get past their differences  Introverted and Extroverted leaders can be tremendously helpful to each other.  They put the outcomes of their work first and don’t get bogged down in the process of communication.

 I would love to see an update to this article. How has their relationship evolved several years later? I will dig around and see what I can discover. 

Send me any examples from your own experience of working with your opposite type. Challenges and positives welcomed.  I can include your examples in the book. 

Career Evaluation: Look In The Rearview Mirror

Introverts, Jennifer Kahnweiler

After the NSA-GA radio show with NSA-GA President and host Dez Thornton.

In hindsight, what are some of the lessons you learned from your career?

One of the things that happens when you step into the “seasoned” category is that younger people start asking you about your past. It has been a strange and gratifying experience; now that I am able to connect the dots from my various career experiences, things seem to make more sense. For instance, my job as a career coach helped me recently when I was responding to a reporter’s rapid fire questions about introvert angst. From this rearview mirror perspective I see the same issues repeatedly emerge.

Another example: Spending too much $ on the wrong biz service providers emerges again and again (and again) in the “lessons learned category.” I am a slow learner!

In an interview I did last month with Dez Thornton, top notch speaker, President of NSA-GA and host of the radio show Speaking Insights  we discussed the story behind The Introverted Leader and Quiet Influence . I focused on lessons learned from my speaking career. In one story I described leaving the room because I didn’t know how to handle the hostility of a group of downsized IBM employees in the first wave of job cuts ever. But that experience made me realize that I needed to acknowledge the resistance, hurt and anger those people felt; not be afraid to confront those feelings and succumb to my own fears.

It does feel weird to quote myself but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to pay attention to my own words again! Here are a few:

” Before I selected a niche I didn’t feel like I had a leadership identity when I was speaking on the topic of leadership.”

” The connection is what counts and it leads to business.”

” Speak a lot for practice.”

” Get work from the work that you do.”

” Partner with organizations when you want to work internationally.”

“The book and the speech are symbiotic.”

” I own the role of speaker now from being involved with the National Speakers Association.

What are your quotes as you look In your own rearview mirror? 

 

 

 

Introvert Qualities: Listen and Learn

Introvert Qualities “Engaged Listening helps you understand what’s going on around you, what people are thinking and feeling, threads of themes, and even what key pieces of the puzzle might be missing.”  p. 74

Quiet Influence: The Introvert’s Guide to Making a Difference

How is your listening going lately? Could you use a tune up? In what situations might revving up your listening power help you learn more?

I have learned so much about the introvert qualities of listening and pausing as I wear my interviewer’s hat. Gathering research for a book on successful Introvert-Extrovert work partnerships, I listen to recorded stories driving around Atlanta, taking neighborhood walks, and sipping drinks at my local coffee shop. The audio recordings of these sessions reveal rich tapestries and clues and I am both moved and totally engaged. While the puzzle pieces are yet to be assembled, strong themes are emerging. I know that listening will provide the answers I need.

Engaged Listening is one of the introvert qualities that lead to successful interviewing. I hope you find some of these interviewing tips useful.

 

Jennifer Kahnweiler’s Five Tips for Successful Interviewing 

  

1.

Provide questions to your interviewees before talking with them. It helps them to reflect on the answers. This is an introvert sweet spot btw. The responses you get will be thoughtful and well considered.   

2.
Pause after asking a question. You extroverts might struggle with this one, but believe me, it works. Count “1, 2, 3” in your head and don’t try to fill the silence. Ask them if they need more time to think and then let them take it.
3.

Record the interview with your interviewee’s permission. I use the recording feature on GoToMeeting and love it. Don’t worry about getting everything down on paper and replay the audio to hear voice tone and nuance.

4.
Ask open-ended follow-up questions to explore avenues that pique your interest. For instance, “Can you give me an example?” or “Take me back to that day and describe in more detail what occurred?”
5.
Encourage your interviewee’s questions. You might have overlooked what could turn out to be a nugget. A fave question of mine is “What question haven’t I asked you?”

Come Learn With Me at Mobile Business Academy

FinalLogoDave Basarab #1

I am so fortunate to have friends who are doing such cool things! Dave Basarab is one of those people who may just be revolutionizing the learning scene. This week his brainchild,  Mobile Business Academy, 12 years in the making has launched and It is bound to be a big hit.

Dave has brought over 30 years as a training expert and learning professional to the problem of finding time to learn. And he has emerged with a beautifully elegant and simple solution called “Learning Bursts, ” which are 8 to 10-minute talk-show style audio casts with accompanying punchy workbook material, They cover subjects like innovation, marketing, creativity, collaboration, being brilliant and introverted leadership.

Bursts can be downloaded and listened to wherever and whenever, making world- class business training accessible for busy people on the go. Companies like IBM and Booz & Co. have successfully trained thousands of employees using Basarab’s learning burst methods. And lucky for us, they are now available to anybody and everyone for a very reasonable cost.

I was honored when Dave asked me to offer The Introverted Leader  in the first wave of offerings. As you will hear in our recorded conversation about the launch (at the top of this post) he calls the learning burst approach “voyeuristic”,  similar to listening in on a conversation. We recorded my bursts in his kitchen over a cup of coffee and you might even hear cups in the background!

Dave reminded me that we have learned through stories for thousands of years and it is the way we are introduced to life before learning to to read. This audio approach with written reinforcement (all the short workbooks have quizzes and summaries)  is truly time tested.

Listen while waiting in line for the groceries or driving in the car by downloading them to all your devices. How easy is that?  And since we learn best in short segments, only one topic is covered at a time. Hear snippets of any of the many bursts as many times as you like.

I am upping my game by listening to Simon T. Bailey’s Shift To Brilliance.  Browse all 5 programs and download your samples today.  Like with any new venture, feedback on the content and delivery system is welcomed. Won’t you join me on this learning journey? I look forward to it!

Quiet Women are Leaning In

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Women are leaning in and making their voices heard. My heart has been full this past week after reading the comments written in response to Quietly Leaning In: An Introvert’s Guide To Leadership.  Readers are validating these challenges and adding wonderful practical tips for navigating Type A worlds. Here is a great example from Elisa Hudson, Territory HR Manager at Kohl’s Department Stores. Continue reading

Want to build relationships? Try some serendipity

I was inspired by a discussion I had on HuffPost Live last week. We spoke about how preparation helps when introverts attempt to make friends. It occurred to me that building relationships at work also relates to preparation. In fact, the quiet influencers who have the most fluid and comfortable conversations consciously prepare for these interactions. Here are some examples of how they prepare to build relationships at work.

1)  Set up space and times to talk. Consider how your workspace enhances or discourages conversations. If  you work in a noisy or busy space take a walk with a colleague or move to a private area.  Scope these places out ahead of time. Schedule phone calls or video conferencing so that you are both focused. Continue reading

Social Media Tip: Shine The Spotlight On Others

spotlight3 (1)One of the six strengths of Quiet Influencers is the thoughtful use of social media. I have been particularly struck with how generous many of them are in giving away their content and ideas.

One great example of this is found with my friend Jesse Stoner. She is co-author with Ken Blanchard of Full Steam Ahead and writes a popular leadership blog. Jesse also has 25,000 Twitter followers. She has brilliant ideas about how to create a vision for yourself, your organization and your team. But she doesn’t rely exclusively on her own intellectual property. Jesse wisely weaves in the lessons of others to deepen her own thinking and make us challenge our own. For instance, recently she ran a series of terrific guest posts from top leadership thinkers like Doug Conant, Jim Kouzes, Barry Posner and Shilpa Jain. The  comments were equally as intriguing as the blog posts and are still creating buzz in the leadership development community.

So what are some other ways to shine the spotlight on others?  Continue reading