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Stop Taking Advantage Of Your Introverted Coworkers.

“I don't blame myself or feel guilty for not asking about their weekend. I blame them for talking to me in the first place.”

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I can honestly say that, based on my 30+ years of business experience, the characteristics most needed in business are those notable in introverted individuals.

Curious, genuine, and great listeners, introverts have the best qualities that should be leveraged when helping consumers or clients find what they need. Unfortunately, these qualities are often taken advantage of in the workplace. WE NEED TO STOP THIS.

I asked some friends of mine, who leaned on the introverted side, what they really felt while at work. Some despise certain parts of the workplace and others just want a little more consideration and, well, SPACE.

Here’s what I got.

*Due to aforementioned introversion and fear of being called out, some of these will remain anonymous and thus will be called AIs: Anonymous Introverts.

Respect Their Time And Listening Skills. Don’t Abuse Them.


* “Don't give me a cake. Don't give me a card. Give me the rest of those sample files so I can test my code and move on to the next task. Also, don't tell me happy birthday; tell me who I need to email to get access to the acceptance server.” - AI

* "Just because I act interested in a person’s conversation, doesn't mean I want to hear all 20 minutes of it. Did they not get the hint when my only responses were 'ohhhh' and 'wow' *add in a few tired giggles throughout." - AI

Respect Their Space. Don't Touch 'Em.


* “It’s hard being expected to hug people. Clients. Partners. Vendors. A hearty handshake should be good enough. I don't know you, you are not my mom, you're not my boyfriend, you're not my best friend... or a friend at all, really. Keep it professional and definitely don't call me out when I stick my hand out as you're stepping in for full body contact.” - Samantha

Respect Their Peace. Shhhhh A Little.


* "For the love of all things that are holy, do not have loud conversations near my cube lest I get nasty." - Erin

* “People talking on the phone is a big one. Taking a personal call ugh! I don’t want to know that much about you. Tis’ loud, noisy and disruptive - I really don’t care about your life outside this cubicle.” - Sarah

* "For the love of god, stop loudly chewing and smacking your food at a level where I can hear you across the room." - AI

Stop Forcing Them To Participate in Intrusive or Overly Outspoken Things. (No More Group Selfies, Please.)


* “People taking selfies is bad enough, but it’s even worse when they include you.” - AI

* “Having to pose for group photos with everyone can be a bit much.” - Kristin

* “Times when we have to go around the room and each say something. Knock that off!” - AI

Don’t Make Them Feel Bad For Not Small Talking.


* “I don't blame myself or feel guilty for not asking about their weekend. I blame them for talking to me in the first place.” - Dustin

Don’t Underestimate Them. (i.e. Don’t Shut Them Down When They DO Speak Up).

* “Just because I'm quiet doesn't mean I'm upset or mad or dislike you. Often, it's quite the opposite and usually a simple [but not shallow] conversation helps me open up.” - AI

* "Just because I'm quiet, doesn't mean I don't have any creative ideas....Ask for my opinion! I don't bite!" - AI

Let Them Do Their Job.


* "Your Dustin did not ask you about your weekend after you asked about his because he just had an idea for how to fix the file upload, so he's doing his best to ignore you until you leave so the idea doesn't float away." - Also Dustin

* “I hate leaving the safety of my desk for any reason. It’s frustrating when I can’t get back to what I was doing because I’ve been pulled all directions on my way back.” - AI

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