Introverted Leadership Toolkit
Managing Energy
The Perceptions of Others
What introverted leaders said about the challenges of the Perceptions of Others
Positive approaches to Managing the Perceptions of Others
What introverted leaders said about how they Manage the Perceptions of Others
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The Perceptions of Others


Introverted leaders reported that they struggled with other peoples’ perceptions of their character and skills.

Common misperceptions or limiting perceptions included:

  • being fragile and in need of support
  • not being leadership material
  • being indecisive
  • not fitting the image of the typical leader
  • being remote, distant or difficult to approach
  • being shy
  • being too laid back
  • not being sufficiently gregarious
  • not having an opinion
  • being too sensible, serious
  • taking too long to think about things
  • being too conceptual or ‘academic’
  • having insufficient drive
  • being unsympathetic.

Other have noted that:

  • the tendency to ‘freeze’ in conflict situations can create a perception that introverted leaders are weak or uncaring
  • creating positive first impressions can be particularly challenging as the culture may require one-off spontaneous likeability
  • for those introverted leaders who ‘act extrovert’, the mismatch between this and their ‘authentic’ behaviour can be disconcerting to colleagues.