Faking Extroversion

August 12, 2019

Faking Extroversion

In the last post, I gave you an example of when introversion can prevent you from being successful even if it’s not about salary or promotions. This is where faking can come in.

How faking extroversion helps

There were several times during that interaction when your introversion didn’t help you get the extra research money. I won’t replay the whole conversation, but pick some bits to discuss.

Narita claims she did an analysis:


Great, I’ve done the analysis, Jeff, and I can deliver three months earlier with the infusion of new money.

Introverts typically need time to reflect before they can react. Springing claims in the meeting can be off-putting. But you could have said:


That’s great, Narita. Could you walk us through the analysis?

This gives you time to reflect—still a bit on the fly but better than nothing.

You try to get a focus on the data:


Can I see the analysis?


Sure, I’ll send it to you. Three months gives us a jump on production. We might be able to make the spring sales conference instead of the fall’s.

She breezed by the lack of analysis to the carrot she is dangling in front of Jeff. Don’t let her get away with it.


Ah, sorry, could you discuss the analysis to show how you came to that conclusion?

This way, you make the conversation about the data rather than the rosy (but potentially flawed) future.

You didn’t think that you needed to argue for the new money:


Okay, why should you get the money?


It’s obvious. I have the more important project. It’s the rational thing to do.

Your introverted self didn’t realize that the others wouldn’t necessarily see things as you do and that you need to convince them of your statement. Instead, you can try:


Well, I can’t promise an earlier delivery date but I think we could add a feature (describe it) that we threw out in the design phase because it would cost too much.



Yeah, I thought you might ask, so I prepared a paper on what I could do with the money.

Having the time to work out what you would do with the money beforehand gives you the reflection time while still meeting Jeff’s requirements.

Generally speaking…

You want to do all you can to make the meeting work with your introversion proclivity rather than against it. Slowing things down so that you have time to think will help as well as marshalling your arguments in the quiet of your own cubicle before going into the meeting. In this way, you’re faking extroversion while still remaining true to yourself.

Faking extroversion is an important way to get what you need. The next post outlines some more methods.

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