Press & Media

Should You Hire an Introverted Candidate?


Generally, employers would prefer to hire an extroverted candidate over introvert ones because most employers associate extroverted people with being more fun, approachable, and outgoing. Social individuals are also more likely to succeed better than their private counterparts.  

However, as a recruiter, maybe you should change this mindset now. Why? Because hiring introverted candidates could add greater value to a company. The first thing to notice is, introverts can be a highly effective leader, supported by various studies finding that introverts are better than extroverts at performing some essential leadership skills.

See also: Why You Should Re-Hire Your Former Employee

Glenn Leibowitz survey, for example, cited that introverts are more observant and their understanding is greater than their extroverted counterparts. This behaviour is very useful in leadership. The survey found that albeit extroverts might seem like the strongest leaders with their highly confident traits. Introverts, on the contrary, will be an effective leader as they can engage and give good judgement through their observant minds.

Some of the great leaders who consider themselves as an introvert are Abraham Lincoln, who valued inner strength, integrity, and good deeds, was perceived as being quiet, reserved, and dignified. There is also Bill Gates the founder of Microsoft. He is an example of an introverted person who is not shy. As noted by Susan Cain, Gates is a quiet and bookish but apparently he is introverted but not shy.

So, as the nature of introvert individuals is commonly intense, passionate, thoughtful, observant, private, often shy, etc. which means they can bring more value to your company's bottom line. Here are some examples of what introverted candidates can bring to an organisation.

·         They will be a fantastic listener.   

·         They can add advance and innovative ideas.

·         Their focus is a great value to address tougher problems or projects.

·         They are calmer in a tough situation.

·         They add less workplace drama and put more attention to work.

·         They embrace shorter meetings to get things done better and effectively.

·         They might become a good advisor and help tackle a difficult situation.

·         They tend to be careful to make a decision.

The problem of an introvert

The nature of being introverts can also pose a problem during the hiring process. Nicola McHale, a leadership coach and trainer with the Institute of Recruiters, told the Financial Times that introverts might find it difficult to talk about themselves. They embrace the quality of their input and output. They are also a thinker. So, during the recruitment process, employers might see them as a shy, quiet, secretive, reactive, and low energy on the first meeting. Thusly, it might decrease their chance of employability. Without meeting for the second or third, McHale added, you might never know the true value of each, especially introverted, candidate. Therefore, one way to tackle this problem is by sending out as much information in advance as possible to help them prepare. And if you see value in the first place but the candidates seem to be low energy and less promising, you might want to meet them for the second time to see if your judgement is true.

The bottom line is that you should circumvent the misconception that introverts are shy and very unsociable. Introverts do enjoy being sociable but in a group of people, they just avoid being the centre of attention. They prefer to work in a quieter environment but does not mean they want to be locked in a private room all day. They are quiet but they might have many ideas, opinions, or point to make – they just like to present them in the right moment or individually on a one-on-one meeting as introverts like to be prepared.

Next read: Why You Should Hire More Locals than Expats

Next read: When to Turn Down a Counter Offer? (A Few Things to Consider)