When running a meeting where Introverts are present, consider a couple of factors:
- Introverts will not give you their true feelings right away. They need time to collect their thoughts and respond appropriately. Giving them a small window to respond to, “Anybody got any questions or concerns?” will likely just end with a “Nope, I’m all good.” Ask for a response in the morning or by email later in the day. This way, you can be sure you will get their honest input.
- Consensus is not consensus. Any response that is coerced or given too quickly under pressure can be discarded.
- Conflict will arise down the line when the Extraverted boss finally hears the opinion of the Introverted colleagues and exclaims, “What! Why didn’t you tell me in the meeting when I asked if anybody had any concerns?!” Avoid this by following Step 1 and giving ample time for a response.
- Extraverts will blurt out what is on their mind as a way of solving their problems or brainstorming. This is their cognitive process playing out for all to hear. Most of this bluster is not a final decision but a collaborative approach that happens to be out loud in front of everyone. For the Introvert, this process is internal and should not be viewed as disinterest or lack of focus.
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