Summary of The Introverted Leader

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9 Overall

9 Applicability

9 Innovation

8 Style


Consultant Jennifer B. Kahnweiler spells out in great detail – complete with strategies, examples, self-tests and forms – how introverts can emerge as better leaders. Although she’s an extrovert, Kahnweiler is married to an unabashed introvert. She believes her husband’s successful example gives her special insight into how introverts can use their personalities as an asset. This second edition of her book is based on 10 years of surveys, interviews and case-study analysis she completed after the publication of the first edition in 2008. It overhauls and expands her original work on the nature, behaviors and leadership potential of introverted professionals. Kahnweiler’s well-informed strategies will open doors for introverted middle managers, tech professionals who need to develop people skills, women who have a hard time getting their bosses to listen and managers who want to bring out the best in their introverted staffers.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How introverts and extroverts differ,
  • What six challenges introverts face, and
  • How to apply the “4Ps Process” to parlay your “quiet strengths” into “introverted leadership.”

About the Author

Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, PhD, consults with major companies. She is a professional speaker who also wrote Quiet Influence and The Genius of Opposites.   



Extroverts and Introverts

Extroverts thrive in a busy organizational environment. They love being around people – the more the merrier. But introverts find that dealing with large numbers of people saps their energy, so many feel “excluded, overlooked or misunderstood” in the tumult of organizational life. Introverts’ careers often suffer because they lack strong people skills, but some of their natural traits like “listening, preparation and calmness” can become great leadership qualities. The general traits that often differ between introverts and extroverts include:

  • Introverts reflect first and then speak; extroverts speak immediately.
  • Introverts get energy from solitude; extroverts get energy from other people, though both may need occasional breaks. 
  • Introverts are more restrained; extroverts are more exuberant.
  • Introverts have low-key facial expressions and are “private at first”; extroverts are facially expressive and “share openly.”
  • Introverts prefer to write; extroverts prefer to talk.
  • Introverts are “humble, calm” and “need time to prepare...

More on this topic

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The Genius of Opposites

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