What is your elevator pitch? Doesn’t it depend on who is in front of you? Sick of people saying, “So, tell me about yourself”? Ah, but that will never go away. Unless you go away. Far, far away—where there are no people. So as long as you’re here, how do you talk about yourself authentically and compellingly? See “What To Say When You Talk About Yourself” for advice nine career enthusiasts (including myself) share with Beth Buelow on her blog, The Introvert Entrepreneur. Care to read more? Check out my earlier story on the topic: “How Do You Talk About Yourself?”
Striving for perfection – rather than just plain excellence – can make you and everyone around you nuts. How can you advance in your career if you regularly spend hours on tasks – like writing a thank you note after an informational interview – that others seem to crank out in an instant?
“Whereas extraverts tend to broaden the sphere of their work, to present their products early (and often) to the world, to make themselves known to a wide circle, and to multiply relationships and activities, the introvert takes the opposite approach,” according to Gifts Differing by Isabel Briggs Myers. She continues in her book: “Going more deeply into their work, introverts are reluctant to call it finished and publish it.”
Stephanie Overby makes a good point in her new story in CIO magazine, “Self-Promotion: Learning the Right Way to Brag.” “When someone essentially invites you to brag—‘What’s new? How’s everyone in IT?’” she says, “responding with a laundry list of accomplishments won’t work.” Yes, in fact, that’s one way to get labeled a bore! Instead, she adds, “Prepare for such moments by first compiling a list of accomplishments: recent successes, obstacles overcome, compliments from a client or colleague. Update the list often so it stays current.” And of course, make it timely and relevant to your conversation partners. Overby interviewed me and Peggy Klaus, author of BRAG! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It, for her story.
In his “WalletPop” column for AOL, Ron Dicker poses a compelling scenario: “You find out that a work colleague with a similar title, duties and experience is making more money than you. A lot more. You can whine about it—or you can do something about it.” In our interview for his article, “What to Do When You Discover a Colleague Makes More Money,” I share “must do’s” to get the compensation you deserve. Advantages in this arena for introverts are our inclination to do our homework and think before we speak. If you’re inclined to ask your manager to bump up your pay, you’ll score more by doing your research, planning your approach—how and when to approach her, and role-playing with a trusted adviser before making a peep.
Check out “Does Your Occupation Fit Your Personality?” on the Savvy Sugar blog. Here’s an excerpt: “I definitely consider myself an introvert. I love being around people and I can turn on my social side when I need to, but I really do my best work and feel the most recharged when I’m alone. My job, happily, strikes the perfect balance for me. How about you? Does your role at work mesh with your personality?”
Photo courtesy of NBC
Why don’t your prospective employers, clients, and other key players follow up with you when they say they will? Don’t they take you seriously?
Keith Ferrazzi had me laughing out loud in a plug he did today for my recent interview with Tahl Raz, co-author of his bestseller, Never Eat Alone: “So many people (and introverts are especially guilty of this), assume that you have to be like a Golden Retriever in a business suit to expand your circle and get noticed.” By now, you must know you can climb as high as you’d like (or go wherever you want) even as a more placid Basset Hound. Ferrazzi was spreading the word about my chat with Raz on his myGreenlight Social Capitalist Skills Session in which I offer my live coaching input to six challenges Raz poses. If you missed our interview, check out the transcript. Also, don’t miss Raz’s humorous story about hiding in the bathroom at his own parties.
What do you offer your employers, clients, and other stakeholders that makes a difference to them? Who else can spell out that difference for you?
It may come as a relief to you as an introvert that you don’t have to be the only one tooting your horn. In fact, whether you’re looking for a job or for more clients, there’s nothing like your bosses, colleagues, and clients singing your praises. Of course, don’t be shy about providing them with a song sheet.
When you think of diversity and inclusion, accepting people of different races, religions, cultures, and gender orientations might come to mind. However, another important aspect of diversity is also accepting people of different personality types—and learning to work well with and manage people whose styles are different from your own. …