“Do you love cats more or dogs?”
“Are you a tea lover or a coffee person?”
These questions are sure to spark a conversation in any social setting. They are effective ice-breakers and give a glimpse of the personality of people engaged in a conversation. Then again, how the conversation continues depends on how much people share. Whether they are extroverts and actively share their views or an introvert, when they try to dodge the attention on them.
If you have ever observed such conversations in social settings, say, office meetings, you must have noticed some people intently listening before sharing their views. They are an ideal example of an ambivert, who share traits of both introvert and extrovert.
What is an ambivert?
Ambiverts are people who have the qualities of both extroverts and introverts. Leaders with an ambivert style bring certain value to organizations.
Advantages of being an ambivert
Leadership is about creating the right balance both in their decisions and actions. Usually, leaders are expected to portray that balance in different and difficult situations they come across.
Take an example of a team meeting discussing a new project. A team expects its leader to inspire and encourage them through their confidence and actions. At the same time, a good leader is also expected to listen to their employees and give them a chance to share views on certain situations.
Many times, extrovert personalities don’t find inspiration from their introverted leader who tries to keep to themselves in social settings. On the other hand, introverted team members may feel put off by their extrovert people.
However, holding interpersonal communication with ambiverts, both these introverts and extroverts see a glimpse of their personality and feel naturally inspired.
How are ambiverts proved to be better leaders?
Usually, extroverted leaders have been considered to be more successful. But if you look closely at the statistics, most of the time, people forget or ignore the third group that exists in addition to extroverts or introverts.
Karl Moore, Associate Professor of Management at McGill University, having studied ambiverts for years. He estimated that over 40% of leaders of top businesses are extroverts, another 40% are introverts, and the rest 20% are true ambiverts.
And one of the major reasons why ambiverts prove to be more successful leaders is that they adapt to what’s necessary. Moreover, it’s not only leaders or CEOs who benefit from ambiversion. The earlier in your career you build these interpersonal skills, the more benefits you will see as you climb the corporate ladder. Here’s how:
- An ambivert understands when to give time to an introvert to collect their thoughts
- An ambivert knows when to give an extrovert a chance to share their ideas
- An ambivert can notice when an extrovert’s action is overwhelming an introvert or when an introvert’s actions seem frustrating for an extrovert
Understanding your co-workers’ or team’s style of working helps you respond and act better around them. This further strengthens work relationships, trust, team spirit and productivity.
Can you develop an ambiversion style?
Yes, you can. Just as you work on your interpersonal skills, you can try and develop an ambiversion style by practicing. Think of it as working on setbacks rather than revamping your personality.
Observe and understand your authentic personality traits, embrace your strengths and work on your weaknesses. With practice, you can find that balance and perform better at the workplace leading yourself and your team toward success.