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Do employees who talk less do less work?

by Afonso
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Imagine a scene.

Suppose, you are a senior official in an office. You have several employees under you. You presented them with a new project and explained its work. In response to this, a staff member very enthusiastically started discussing it. He might be having lunch while talking to his colleagues about new projects. Another worker is relatively quiet, rarely discussing new projects externally. That is, the motivation of the second person is not at least noticeable.

Now tell me, which worker would you naturally judge positively?

If you prefer the first person, remember – you’re not alone in making that decision. That is, many others would have made the same decision if they were in your position. That is normal. People with an extroverted personality have an open-minded attitude. On the other hand, introverted people tend to be a little pushy. As a result, the boss of the office may prefer the person who expresses his feelings openly. Because it is easy to understand the feelings and expressions of such a person. On the other hand, it is difficult for an introvert to understand these things externally. As a result, it becomes difficult to make any assumptions based on behavior. And for these reasons, most of the time, an extroverted worker becomes a favorite with the bosses. And their comment about the relatively quiet worker, ‘He doesn’t talk!’ Along with this comment, the boss also feels that the quiet worker may be doing less work. Because, there is a Bengali proverb – ‘first the visionary, then the judge of merit’. That is, while judging a person, we mostly take into consideration what kind of behavior he exhibits. But talking less means doing less? Or conversely, do talkative workers always do more work?

The answer to both these questions is, ‘No’. Such information has been known in various researches and surveys. That is, a person who talks less does less work by evasion, not the case at all. Again, the fact that the extroverted person expresses his passion for work in front of everyone is not the same thing that he does more work.

Extrovert or introvert – who loves work more?

Several research papers were published in the international journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin in November this year. About 1,800 US students participated in a study titled ‘Extraverts reap greater social rewards from passion because they express passion more frequently and diversely’. It found that superiors generally preferred more extroverted colleagues and were more favorable toward them in various organizational assessments. That is, their progress in the workplace would also be higher. Also, the senior officials who participated in the study also said that they think that introverted employees have less passion for work.

Thus, it is clear that introverts are somewhat negatively perceived by superiors at work. In this case, they are mainly attracted by the open behavior of extroverted workers.

A paper titled ‘Emotional Expressiveness, Extraversion and Neuroticism: A Meta-Analysis’ was published in December 2002. It was found that the expression of emotions of extroverts is clear and visible. As a result, it is very easy to come to observational conclusions in this case. For example: People of this character can express joy by laughing. But introverts usually smile in such situations. Many people may smile with their faces pressed. As a result, it is difficult to understand the exact level of his feelings.

Researchers say, because of these reasons, bosses have a good eye for extroverted employees. And this has implications for institutional assessment. It is assumed that workers of this character may also work more, they are more interested in work. However, researchers are opposing the way introverts are cornered in this process. According to them, introverts have as much or more passion for work at work than others. But his recognition is not available.

According to experts, introverts express their feelings differently than extroverts. A different study asked about 1,300 full-time working professionals. Basically, they were asked about how they express their feelings about passion. That study found that fewer people are willing to communicate or articulate their work passions. These are the main characters. They talk a lot, are eager to express their feelings in front of everyone and attract someone through it. Apart from this, a large number of professionals do not express their passion for work in front of others. Rather, they spend the allocated energy in that sector in real work and try to make the result good. In a word, they are more attentive to quality and meaning instead of observation.

Are introverts unsuccessful?

Interestingly, introverts perform less, as conventional belief holds among workplace superiors, quite the opposite in terms of success. Conventional belief suggests that even if a job is somewhat doable, introverts will find it more difficult to start a business or venture. But experts say that introverts are more likely to succeed as entrepreneurs. In this case, some strong characteristics of introverts have been mentioned. These are:

1. Introverts tend to think creatively.

2. These people are very interested in creating new ideas.

3. They talk less, listen more. And listening attentively is a prerequisite to being a good leader.

4. Introverts don’t do anything without thinking too enthusiastically. Rather, it is their nature to think and act coldly. As a result, work results are also better.

5. Individuals with introverted personalities tend to cope with situations and solve problems. Because they are relatively more calm in nature and interested in well-thought-out solutions.

Introverts tend to develop new meditation concepts.  Photo: CollectedYou can find famous people who have these characteristics by reading above. In that case, let’s mention some names. For example: world-renowned filmmaker Steven Spielberg, one of the richest people in the world, Elon Musk or Warren Buffett – they are all self-proclaimed introverts. Hopefully, these three names make sense.

What managers should understand

Despite the above discussion, it is true that not only in Bangladesh, but also in various workplaces around the world, most of the managers still believe that extroverts are good at work and introverts are relatively incompetent. That is, extroverts are at the top of their preference list. However, in the discussion so far, it must have been understood that the matter is irrelevant. So managers must make some changes in their judgment and consideration process.

First, managers or superiors should try to understand the character traits of subordinates. In this case, a deep observation should be carried out. Remember, it’s not normal for everyone to shout ‘hooray’ when a new project is announced in a meeting. Therefore, it is not true that the peaceful worker does not have any persecution. Only his expression is different. And this is what managers must try to understand.

Second, identify how an employee is expressing their feelings. What is the minimum limit for one, may be the maximum limit for another! So it should be understood.

Third, instead of rewarding expressions of passion for work, one must develop the habit of rewarding craftsmanship. Generally, many managers make decisions to reward behavior. Stop judging whether it’s an hour at work. This is the most important thing to change.

What do introverts do?

Introverts also need to take certain steps to avoid discrimination in the workplace. It should be remembered that one hand does not clap. So some steps taken by introverts can make change managers a little easier.

In this case, you may have to step out of character. For example: A strategic process can increase the amount of talking in an office meeting to some extent. This doesn’t mean that you have to go crazy! But the rate can be increased a little. By doing this, it is possible to make the matter of one’s interest and attention to work better visible.

But it must also be remembered that going beyond one’s nature is not beneficial to the individual. Studies have shown that it impairs a person’s long-term performance and mental well-being. So if introverts want to change their nature, it must be balanced. If it is not, but you have to find yourself lost!

References: The Guardian, Vogue Magazine, ScienceDirect.com, Harvard Business Review, SagePub Journals, Springer.com, Psychnet.apa.org and Forbes



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