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Feb 09 2012

Quiet, Please: Should workplaces be designed for extroverts?


Susan Cain, author of  Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking,on how today’s workplaces are designed for extroverts:

“It’s quite a problem in the workplace today, because we have a workplace that is increasingly set up for maximum group interaction. More and more of our offices are set up as open-plan offices where there are no walls and there’s very little privacy. … The average amount of space per employee actually shrunk from 500 square feet in the 1970s to 200 square feet today.

“Introverts are much less often groomed for leadership positions, even though there’s really fascinating research out recently from Adam Grant at [The Wharton School of business at the University of Pennsylvania] finding that introverted leaders often deliver better outcomes when their employees are more proactive. They’re more likely to let those employees run with their ideas, whereas an extroverted leader might, almost unwittingly, be more dominant and be putting their own stamp on things, and so those good ideas never come to the fore.”

via Quiet, Please: Unleashing ‘The Power Of Introverts’ : NPR.



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