The Successful Introvert

How to Advance Your Job Search and Advance Your Career

Non-Fiction - Health - Fitness
108 Pages
Reviewed on 04/10/2009
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite

Anyone looking for a job will have butterflies in their tummy.  For introverts, it is even more difficult.  I have attributes of both extrovert and introvert.  I can speak in public with very few butterflies.  I can be self-confident in that situation.  However, networking almost makes me sick to my stomach.  I do much better in a career situation than a social one.

Wendy Gelberg offers exemplary strategies for the introvert facing networking and interview situations.  Gelberg draws on her own experiences and those of other successful introverts.  I found the chapter that defines shy people and introverts very interesting.  Most people do not realize there is a difference.
As I was reading this book, I was reminded of a recent encounter.  I was at a retreat.  A very nice woman was sitting close to me.  She was not very talkative.  She did not participate in much.  I ended up very uncomfortable.  I had the feeling that she did not like me or found me annoying.  She was an introvert.  Not all introverts are rude, but their reticence often makes them appear that way.  If I had a copy of this book with me, I would have presented her with it.  With her attitude, I would never offer her a job.

C. J. Alba

I had a chance to see The Successful Introvert right before it went to press, and I absolutely loved it. I'm not just saying that because I knew more of the back-story, and because Wendy participated in the webinar... I loved this book because it speaks to a special person: me. This might surprise you, as I have a public face, but I consider myself to be an introvert. Networking, the job search, putting myself out there, tooting my own horn, all that stuff is a painful process.

I remember a few months ago I was at a conference where I was a speaker. The opening night of the conference was an open-bar networking thing, and most of the people there were social media people. It was the perfect crowd for me, right? Instead of going down and networking, I went to my hotel room, got into my pajamas, and hunkered down for a peaceful, quiet night.

That's me. Jason the introvert. Guess how all of my other networking efforts go? It is taxing. It's genuine, and once I get my groove I'm cool, but sometimes just getting that groove is hard, and scary, and takes a lot of effort.

As I read this book I learned about myself, as an introvert. And I could see how this would benefit job seekers who are scared to death of the job search. There's an idea that you have to be a loud, Type A personality to get what you want, otherwise the loud ones are going to take what you deserve. Wendy breaks down some myths, and helps me understand how to go about a job search as an introvert.

Here are the chapters:

* Chapter 1: Are You Introverted or Are You Shy?
* Section 2: Job Search and Transition
* Chapter 3: Promoting Yourself: Creating an Effective Resume
* Chapter 4: Cultivating Connections
* Chapter 5: Promoting Yourself: Interviewing
* Chapter 6: After You Land­: Transitioning to Success
* Chapter 7: Embrace Your Introversion

In addition to Wendy's personal experiences, she has a bunch of introverts sharing their thoughts, techniques, etc. with you. Here's one I really like from Patty Lebau, a teacher (page 37):

"[Job search] has always been a not-fun process, but when I changed it into a research project, I was able to turn it into something I could handle. A research project is the kind of intellectual area that I'm comfortable with."

One more quick comment. I LOVE the cover. I know how hard it is to come up with a good cover, but the image of the pearl really sums up the idea... great job Wendy!

Jeanne Knight

As a Career Coach, I often work with clients who cringe at the thought of networking to find job leads or struggle with the idea of "selling themselves" on an interview. So many times I've wished I had a resource I could offer that would help them feel more comfortable with their introversion, as well as provide tools for how to conduct a successful job search. I have finally found such a resource. In the "Successful Introvert," Wendy describes the differences between "introversion" and "shyness" and offers insights into the challenges faced by introverts as they strive to manage their careers in a seemingly "extroverted" world. Being a Career Coach and an introvert herself, she offers empathetic advice, practical strategies, usable tools, and realistic action plans that will help any introverted or shy person feel more confident, empowered, and "OK" with who they are as they conduct their job search and manage their career.

Throughout the book are quotes by professionals in a variety of careers who consider themselves introverted, and who offer insights into how they've managed their introversion and tapped into their strengths to survive - and even thrive - in an extroverted world. I found these insights most valuable and I believe readers of the book will connect with the people she's interviewed and take strength from their comments. I highly recommend this book to anyone who considers themselves introverted and who wants to feel more confident in conducting their job search and in managing their career in general.