How Extroversion in Personality Influences Behavior

Extraversion Personality Trait

How Extroversion in Personality Influences Behavior

OCEAN is a common acronym that is widely used to describe the five big traits that help define personality types.

Openness, Conscientiousness, Extroversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism make up the big five and can provide employers and recruiters with useful insight into a candidate or colleague that will also help predict future career success or potential business disruption.

Extraversion is one of the most commonly understood personality traits but in today’s guide we are going to dive deeper into this personality type. We are going to take a look at how extraversion can influence behaviour in the workplace, what can make someone an introvert or an extrovert and how Thomas International can help you assess and measure a person’s level of extroversion. 

Throughout today’s guide, you will see different spellings of ‘extrovert’ and ‘extravert’ as well as ‘extroversion’ and ‘extraversion’. These are just differences in spelling which don’t alter the meaning of the word; they are interchangeable and bear no difference in analysing a candidate’s personality.

What is extraversion?

Extraversion is a measure of how energetic, sociable and friendly a person is.

Extraverts are commonly understood as being a ‘people’s person’ drawing energy from being around others directing their energies towards people and the outside world.

Often seen as the ones talking the most in a social situation, extraverts are traditionally characterized by sociability, talkativeness, assertiveness, and excitability.

It is however unfair to think that extroverted people are attention seekers. On the contrary, they are gaining energy from their social interactions and extroverts need social stimulation to feel energised. 

We will all encounter an extraverted person in our lives, whether professional or personal. Importantly this personality type thrives on excitement and are generally very enthusiastic about social interactions. Impulsive in nature, extroverts prefer to do an activity rather than ponder or think about doing something. 

Important to note is how an extraverted individual will or can impact behaviour in a workplace. We will take a closer look at this shortly however, the main points to note include:

  • Extroverts enjoy being around people and larger social groups. A workplace environment that is suited towards cooperation, teamwork and even allowing space for this personality to thrive is essential. 
  • Extroverts also enjoy talking a lot; this is where they gain ‘energy’ to go about their day and complete their tasks. This could be more problematic in a workplace that deals with more data led and analytical environments where distractions can be problematic to completing tasks.

Introvert and extrovert personality traits

Of course there are different traits for introverts and extroverts and importantly the way that these are understood and analysed can make a significant difference in the way that an individual can respond to a workplace environment or the choices they make in selecting a career. 

Extroverted personality traits

  • Enjoying social situations

This includes but is not limited to the workplace. Extroverts will introduce themselves to strangers easily and rarely avoid unfamiliar situations. 

Being away from other people can be draining in a different way for extroverts. They gain their energy by being around others.

Extroverts find it easy to introduce themselves in social situations and you will also notice how big a social network an extravert will have because of this.

Extraverted individuals tend to take more risks than introverts. Trying and failing is more appetising than not trying at all. 

Introverted personality traits

  • Dis being the centre of attention

In contrast to the extrovert, the introvert finds social situations somewhat difficult and if any attention is directed their way or they are singled out, this can cause a lot of social discomfort.

Introverts looking inwards and analysing themselves, their behaviour or even something that has happened in the day and especially before taking any further action or steps.

Whilst the extrovert finds alone time discomforting, the introvert is a different person altogether. Having that time to unwind by themselves allows them to process emotions and self calm in a way that an extrovert would struggle with.

How extroversion in personality influences behaviour in the workplace

Extroversion can affect behaviour in the workplace. Through years of analysis and even anecdotal experience from managers and recruiters, extroverted personalities can have both a positive and negative influence in the workplace. 

The extroverted subtraits include, friendliness, assertiveness, openness, positivity and excitement seeking. 


Extroverted people make friends easily and enjoy getting to know them. They can build conversations and easily make contacts. Finding genuine interests and topics to talk about gives extroverted people the energy they need to function in a social environment.


Extroverted people tend to be more assertive which makes them natural leaders. You may see this as a pushy personality but in fact, extroverts look at situations with a more positive outlook and believe that they can get the job done.


Extroverts tend to be cheerful and have a positive outlook which can positively affect the people around them — a good teamwork scenario where the stress of the job or the role can be draining.


Extraverted individuals tend to be more open about their personal life, openly discussing what is going on. Sometimes this can be distracting for teams or others in the workplace so it must be managed carefully.

Excitement seeking

Extroverts enjoy a fast paced life, filling their social calendar and not sitting for too long on decisions. This can be a plus or minus for those in leadership positions who may need more time to make a decision and move the business forwards.

What makes a person extrovert or introvert

This is a question that neuroscience and psychologists have tried to answer through years of study and analysis. Whilst many argue that extroversion or introversion are on a sliding scale, what is important to note is that there are a few different ways of analysing this question. 

Fundamentally this all boils down to nature vs nurture.

Is it that a person becomes extroverted or introverted through how they grow up or is there a genetic component that influences this more than we might think? Studies have shown that there is a strong genetic link to extraversion, contributing somewhere between 40% and 60% of the variance between extroversion and introversion. Twin studies have shown that individual experiences carry greater weight than shared experiences in families [1].

Because extroversion or introversion can be part of your personality which can change over time, (you may be less social as a child but not as an adult for example) many social psychologists have coined ambiversion to explain this personality trait. There is a little more to ambiversion however. 

Ambiverts can be both extroverted and introverted and can flip into either depending on their mood, content and goals. For example, an ambivert can be in the camp of liking company or time by themselves depending on their situation or circumstance. 

You will have heard of terms such as outgoing introverts or anti-social extroverts. This is just another way to describe ambiversion. It is better understood as extroversion as seen on a sliding scale. 

There have been many neuroscience studies which also show that the brains of extroverts and introverts differ.

One prime example is when dopamine floods the brain of both extroverts and introverts and the different reactions that take place.

Whilst both personalities will talk more and take more risks, extroverts will respond more to this stimulus and can even channel it greater than an introvert.

Advantages of of the extravert personality trait

There are many advantages of having an extroverted personality. From finding it easier to get a job to even more success in personal life such as dating. Here are some of the other advantages to extraverted personalities. 

  • Find it easier to establish valuable relationships
  • Able to guide conversations
  • Higher levels of confidence
  • Generally cheerful and upbeat
  • Find it easier to start conversations with strangers
  • Have larger social networks
  • Can be characterized as having an “aura”
  • Can lead conversations in a desired direction
  • Is generally easier to be understood through language

There are however some of the downsides of extraversion such as:

  • Don’t always work well in solitude or alone
  • Manner can be annoying to others
  • Overconfidence
  • May take excessive risk
  • Can be an exhausting personality type
  • Can be over the top and thus, exhaustive
  • Rely for other people to be happy to find satisfaction

How Thomas assessments measure workplace personality

The Thomas workplace personality assessment can be used to understand a candidate or employees extraversion, and wider personality. 

Thomas workplace personality assessment can be used to understand a candidate or employees level of extraversion, and wider personality by using the globally recognised and respected big 5 psychological theory. The High Potential Trait Indicator (HPTI) as we also call it, can also help to identify leadership potential.

Developed by Ian MacRae and Adrian Furnham in 2006, the HPTI has been designed an ‘optimality’ model, which assumes that personality traits can be considered ‘optimal’ the requirements of a particular job role or position, such as senior executive leadership.

Whether you are looking for the next superstar to join your team, possibly even start to change team dynamics or you want to measure the level of extraversion in your workplace, the HPTI assessment can analyse all the data in one place giving you insight in minutes.

In summary

Extraversion is a measure of how energetic, sociable and friendly a person is.

Extraverts are commonly understood as being a ‘people’s person’ drawing energy from being around others directing their energies towards people and the outside world.

Social scientists have spent years studying extroversion and how much this is impacted by both nature and nurture. There are advantages and disadvantages of being extroverted and over time, one can become more extroverted or introverted or, many can also fit into the category of ambiversion — where both extrovert and introvert tendencies can comfortably sit. 

Being able to accurately assess how extroverted and introverted a candidate or employee is can help organisations understand team dynamics and where the business can create a working environment that works for everyone. Visit our workplace personality page to find out more. 




Introvert vs Extrovert — The Difference Between Personality Traits

How Extroversion in Personality Influences Behavior

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Most of us think being introverted or extroverted is as simple as falling into one of two boxes: Would you rather stay at home on a Friday night in your pajamas or go out to the bars with a big group of friends? Would you rather be the center of attention or stay as far away from the spotlight as you can?

But the truth is, your personality is not that black and white. “There are no pure types in psychology,” says Dan McAdams, PhD, chair of the psychology department at Northwestern University.

“Extroversion/introversion is a continuous dimension, height and weight.

There are people who score at the extremes, very heavy people, or very tall people, or people who score very high on the trait of extroversion—but most people fall in the middle of these bell-shaped curves.”

Regardless of where we sit on the spectrum, there’s no doubt that personality plays a huge role in our everyday lives. “Everything that people do is a reflection of their personality,” says Michael Robinson, PhD, professor of psychology at North Dakota State University. “Personality is always with us, influencing what we think about, what we feel, and how we behave.”

Our personalities are made up of what psychologists call “The Big 5” personality traits, which have the acronym OCEAN: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism, says Scott Bea, PsyD, a psychologist at the Cleveland Clinic.

So even though extroversion is only one part of our personalities, it’s still a big part of how we think and act. And just how extroverted or introverted we are can influence everything from our social views, to our relationships, to our careers. Here’s what to know about the two polar ends of the continuum and determining where you fall.

What is an introvert?

Being more of an introverted person means you thrive on spending time with your own thoughts and ideas.

Common introvert traits

  • Enjoy spending time in solitude
  • Don’t prefer to be the center of attention
  • Value close one-on-one relationships
  • Think before they speak/not as talkative
  • Need time alone to recharge and reflect
  • Prefer working in quiet, independent environments
  • Deeply focus and think about specific interests
  • Can be seen as reserved

“One thing I think people get confused is the difference between introversion and shyness,” says Robin Edelstein, PhD, chair of the Personality and Social Contexts Psychology Program at the University of Michigan. “Shyness has anxiety, or a negative component, to it.” Pure introversion, on the other hand, doesn’t have that negative aspect to it. “They’re happy to be alone, not needing as much social contact, but not having this anxiety about, ‘Will other people me? Will I be accepted?’ That’s more shyness than introversion,” says Edelstein.

“Introverts and extroverts do not differ in the quality of the friendships that they have.”

Another important thing to remember about introverts is that just because they might prefer to be around fewer people, that doesn’t mean they don’t still have quality friendships and relationships, says Robinson. “Once a friendship is established, introverts and extroverts do not differ in the quality of the friendships that they have,” he says.

Although our society tends to be more geared toward extroverts—think leadership roles, building connections, and so on—the seemingly bad image introverts sometimes get doesn’t really hold water. “A lot of people have argued that we value extroversion so much in Western culture that introverts get a bad rap,” says Edelstein. “But there’s nothing problematic about being an introvert.”

In fact, on top of still having great relationships, introverts can also be extremely successful in their careers. The only difference is, they tend to gravitate more toward roles that have an element of solitude, such as accounting, engineering, writing, or long-haul truck driving.

What is an extrovert?

Being more of an extroverted person means you thrive on the energy of the people and things around you.

Common extrovert traits

  • Have large social networks
  • Enjoy being the center of attention
  • Tend to think out loud
  • Make quick decisions
  • Gain energy from being around other people
  • Outgoing, enthusiastic, and positive
  • Thrive in team-oriented and open work settings

“Extroverts are also more ly to be the center of a social network,” says Ryne Sherman, PhD, associate professor of psychology at Texas Tech University. “They’re more ly to be the person who knows lots of people.”

Although there’s no research showing the differences between how introverts and extroverts react to and accept change, since extroverts tend to have larger social circles, that could make a difference in how deeply big life events might impact them. “They can draw on more people to provide comfort, to provide social support,” says Sherman. “So when a major event happens, they have more support than introverts typically do.”

“Our world is set up and more geared toward extroverts and making connections.”

Plus, our society tends to be more geared toward the acceptance of extroverts. “I think you can make a case that they’re better suited to our world in a lot of ways,” says Edelstein. “Our world is sort of set up and more geared toward extroverts and making connections, going on job interviews, and going on dates. All these things make that easier.”

This is part of the reason extroverts can more often be found in leadership roles, or in people-centric careers sales, marketing, or public relations.

But it’s important to keep in mind that extroversion is still just one component of a person’s personality. “I think a big piece of thinking about introversion and extroversion in combination with other traits is it’s going to have a different flavor,” says Edelstein. For example, there’s a big difference between an extrovert who’s agreeable versus one who’s loud and makes rude comments.

So, how do you find out if you’re an introvert or an extrovert?

Most of us will fall somewhere in the middle of the two extremes. That’s a good thing, especially as our society has become more and more obsessed with dividing us out into “types.”

“Certain very popular 'measures' of personality (most notoriously the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, or MBTI) purport to put people into types,” says McAdams. “There are no types, and these measures have no scientific validity. What we can say is that people do show differences with respect to where they are placed on the continuum.”

To find out where you sit on that continuum, Sherman recommends taking the SAPA Project’s personality test, which will tell you whether you’re high or low on extroversion. Being aware of your personality can definitely prove beneficial. “It provides some sense of consistency, predictability, and reliability of our expression of ourselves across time,” says Bea.

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Extraversion And Introversion

How Extroversion in Personality Influences Behavior

Do you thrive when you are the center of attention in a large group? Are you the first person to introduce yourself at a party? Or, do you turn shy at parties and situations in which you might have to speak to strangers?

If you flourish in social situations, you may have an extraverted personality. For decades, psychologists have used this personality trait to better understand how our personalities differ. People with high levels of extraversion tend to feel more comfortable in social situations.

They are usually outgoing, talkative and are happy to be the center of attention even in a group of strangers. Extraverts enjoy meeting new people and are happy to take command when nobody else will lead.

They will generally enjoy a wide social network of friends and acquaintances resulting from their outgoing behavior.

Whilst extraversion is associated with outgoing behavior — an external activity — it also helps us to understand a person’s inner world.

Psychologists believe that a need for social stimulation drives extraverts' behavior.

They find it possible to meet this need by engaging in conversations with strangers, or leading group in challenges at work. Extraverts feel a sense of reward following such social experiences.

Are you an extravert? Take the quiz

Extraversion vs Introversion

Some people are, of course, more extraverted than others, and to different degrees. We can understand extraversion as varying in extent on an introversion-extraversion scale.

A person with a lower level of extraversion may be described as an introvert. Introverts feel more comfortable when socialising in small groups, and with people who they are familiar with.

They may find demanding social gatherings to be draining, and be reluctant to draw attention to themselves in groups.

As a result, introverts tend to have fewer friends and associates, but form strong relationships with those friends they do have. Instead of seeking stimulation by socialising, they receive it from within, and are content with their own company. Introverts tend to be quieter, more cerebral and more reflective than extraverts.

As people tend to fall somewhere between two extremes of extraversion and introversion, extraversion is measured on a continuum.

Many people will exhibit extraverted behavior to different degrees in particular situations. At other times, the same people will behave in an introverted fashion.

The term ambivert is used to describe a person who falls in the middle of the extravert-introvert scale.


Extraversion and introversion were popularised by Swiss psychoanalyst Carl Jung (1875-1961) in 1921. In Psychological Types, Jung described how extraverts engage with external stimuli (Jung, 1921).

He believed that extraverts direct their energy outwards — towards other people — and gain energy from such encounters.

Introverts, meanwhile, focus their energy inwards, towards more solitary, thoughtful activities.

Hans Eysenck, a German-born psychologist who spent much of his life studying personality at the University of London, claimed that extraversion was a key dimension in human personality.

Eysenck developed a model of personality, focussing on extraversion and neuroticism traits (Eysenck, 1967).

After studying his subjects, Eysenck concluded that people’s personalities could be understood using introversion-extraversion and emotionally stable-neuroticism scales.

Eysenck’s wife, Sybil, was a fellow personality psychologist, and together they extended his original model. They later added the psychoticism trait to create the PEN model of personality.

According to this model, extraversion, psychoticism and neuroticism are major personality traits. These broad traits can then be sub-categorised into a series of minor personality traits.

Hans and Sybil developed the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire, with which they assessed the traits used in the PEN model (Eysenck & Eysenck, 1976).

Today, extraversion remains an important measure of the way in which our personalities differ from one another. Alongside openness, conscientiousness, agreeableness and neuroticism, extraversion is considered one of the ‘Big Five’ traits. These traits are often used to provide broad measures of individuals’ personalities.

What Causes a Person to be Extraverted?

What factors cause a person to be more extraverted than another? Sometimes, close relatives, raised in the same environment by the same parents, will be extraverted. But at the same time, their brother or sister will be an introvert. Do we become extraverted or introverted depending on the way we are socialised? Or is the extraversion trait inherited from our parents?


According to Eysenck, biological factors play a significant role in determining our personality traits.

In a 1956 twin study, he found a stronger correlation between extraversion amongst identical than fraternal twins, suggesting a hereditary influence on this personality trait (Eysenck, 1956).

He later claimed that low levels of cortical arousal in extraverts lead them to seek stimulation from their environment, whilst introverts’ increased cortical arousal reduces their need to engage with external stimuli (Eysenck, 1979).

A recent study has provided further support for the idea that biological factors influence extraversion.

In a paper published in the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, researchers in Italy, the US and UK studied MRI scans from the Human Connectome Project.

They found a series of correlations between participants’ Five Factor personality traits and brain structures. Specifically, the research revealed increased cortical thickness amongst extraverts in the precuneus region of the brain (Riccelli et al, 2017).

Image (Riccelli et al, 2017)

Differences in brain structure were found in the precuneus of extraverts, compared to introverts (Riccelli et al, 2017).


Research also suggests that environmental factors could play a role in personality development. Erik Noftle and Phillip Shaver (2006) found that the mother-child relationship can affect extraversion levels.

They investigated attachment styles — the type of relationship formed between mother and child during the early stages of childhood development.

Noftle and Shaver reported that children who formed a secure attachment with a parent exhibited higher levels of extraversion than those who formed other types of attachment.

Other studies have focussed on child-rearing styles and later interactions between parents and their children, as influences on extraversion levels. Researchers at Osaka University in Japan found that the children of protective parents tended to exhibit lower levels of extraversion, for instance (Nakao et al, 2000).

Parental discipline may also influence the development of a child’s personality. Siegelman (1966) reported that sons who were punished by their parents would exhibit more introverted behavior than those who were less severely disciplined.

Extraversion and Happiness

Are extraverts happier than introverts? Studies have long supported a link between extraversion and subjective well-being.

Extraverts gain pleasure from the attention and stimulation of social interactions with friends, family, colleagues and even strangers.

Furthermore, extraverts’ enthusiasm for social activities and their engagement with their environment has been found to lead them to actively seek out more of these enjoyable experiences (Magnus et al, 1993).

However, increased opportunities to socialise appear not to be the only factor in extraverts’ happiness. Even whilst alone, extraverts report being happier than introverts (Diener, 1992).

Links between extraversion and subjective well-being may lead people to feel that their potential to achieve happiness has been predetermined by their personality type. But this is not necessarily true.

Researchers at Oxford Brookes University have suggested that extraversion levels simply affect the behavior that we use to find happiness, rather than determining it.

Extraverts enjoy social situations and therefore active seek them out, whilst introverts find them uncomfortable and look for solitude as a way of avoiding unwanted social interactions (Hills & Argyle, 2001).

Researchers at Wake Forest University in North Carolina have suggested that extraversion as a personality trait may not, in fact, be the cause of happiness.

Instead, they found in a series of experiments that people were happier in situations which they were required to behave as extraverts. So, an introvert may act extraverted — push herself to be more sociable, for instance — and feel more positive as a result (Fleeson, Malanos & Achille, 2002).


The Pros and Cons of Extroversion in the Workplace

How Extroversion in Personality Influences Behavior

Extroversion is one of the most widely talked about personality characteristics of all time.

There have been books written about extroversion and introversion, TED Talks have been given, and there are dozens of online tests and opinions about this every present personality characteristic.

It might be the most widely talked about personality characteristic because it makes a lot of sense and people can easily self-identify their own level of extroversion.

In this post, we'll discuss the relevance of extroversion as it relates to the workplace, the pros and cons of extroverts on the job, and how to become extroverted.

What we'll cover

What is Extroversion? 

Extroversion is the quality of being outgoing and directing attention to things other than yourself. It’s characterized by sociability, assertiveness, talkativeness, and excitability.

People who are high in extroversion seek out social stimulation and love to engage with others. Those who are low in extroversion (introverts), on the other hand, tend to be more quiet, reserved, and less involved in social situations. 

In the simplest terms, extroversion and introversion refers to the way a person “recharges” and processes stimuli. People with high extroversion gain energy by spending time with other people, while introverts gain energy through solitude.

Western society often values and celebrates extroverts, but that doesn’t mean that extroverts are better in the workplace. Introversion and Extroversion both have strengths and weaknesses that can affect performance as an employee, manager, or leader.

The strengths of people HIGH in Extroversion (Extroverts)

People with high extroversion tend to relate well to others, and are often well-d in their teams and offices. They form quick and easy friendships, and their outgoing nature leads to effective group-work.

  • Capable of quickly forming close associations with others
  • Comfortable forming friendships with a large number of people
  • Remember names and faces
  • Tend to be straightforward, candid, and often charismatic
  • Communicate easily with a variety of people
  • Work well in group settings
  • Invites others to participate who might be less inclined
  • Willing to assist others with difficulties
  • Highly sociable, prefer to spend majority of time with others
  • Ideas and comments are well received in group settings
  • Upbeat, chatty, and able to speak publicly
  • Confident in social settings
  • Usually very determined, ly to take charge, and confident
  • Highly self-reliant tendencies, ly to become a leader

The weaknesses of people HIGH in Extroversion (Extroverts)

People with high extroversion may struggle with keeping their emotions in check. At times, they can come across as aggressive or abrasive, but are also intent on pleasing people. This can lead to easily swayed opinions and unfinished projects.

  • Often unable to make analytical, emotionless judgements
  • May lack independence and gumption
  • May value too highly the validation of others
  • Tendency to get lonely
  • May occasionally come across as harsh and aggressive or controlling and arrogant
  • May not have the best judgment
  • Can be too intense or lively
  • May struggle to concentrate on what others are saying
  • May be inconsiderate or sometimes socially unaware
  • Can sometimes make others uncomfortable
  • ly to stand in the spotlight more, rather than giving it to others
  • May appear to be too confident or cocky
  • Desire to spend time in the company of others may affect personal work
  • May attempt to do more than can be realistically completed in a set time frame
  • May struggle to complete projects

The strengths of people LOW in Extroversion (Introverts)

People with low extroversion are precise and detail-oriented. They depend less on encouragement and are good, logical leaders. Their ability to focus on projects leads to high group effectiveness.

  • Not hugely affected by emotions or feelings
  • Less dependent on common encouragements
  • Impartial and critical
  • Insists on precision and being detail-oriented
  • More inclined to take charge in situations that require a logical and fact-based perspective
  • Prefers to focus on one project at a time rather than bounce around
  • Ability to be self-reliant and think purposefully
  • Independent, with the ability to lead group endeavors
  • Dependable, cautious, and deliberate
  • Often well-suited to manage potential pitfalls
  • Tend to have a very steady mood
  • Often mild-mannered, accommodating, and good listener

The weaknesses of people LOW in Extroversion (Introverts)

People with low extroversion can come off as unfriendly or shy. They struggle in social events and can struggle working in groups with people they do not . Once they have an idea in their head, they can be difficult to compromise with. They are often perceived as unfriendly and elitist.

  • May prefer privacy to working in groups
  • Value making their own decisions outside of others’ opinions
  • Social events can be awkward and uncomfortable
  • Often don’t enjoy group events
  • Can be difficult to compromise with
  • May feel an intense sense of inferiority which can result in workplace shyness
  • Not inclined to take charge, and often constrained in social situations and personal relationships
  • Difficulty working in groups
  • May ignore others and follow own opinion despite consensus
  • Form harsh negative opinions on others, very critical
  • Not a risk taker
  • Hard work/accomplishments might not be remembered or appreciated

How do I test for Extroversion?

Testing for extroversion is one of the easier characteristics to spot in people. Look for the following attributes when interacting with individuals you work with and you'll start to get a good sense of how extroverted someone is. 

Signs of HIGH Extroversion (Extroverts)

  • Outgoing
  • Talkative
  • Quick to answer questions
  • Uncomfortable with silence
  • Often talks loudly

Signs of LOW Extroversion (Introverts)

  • Reserved
  • Thinks before responding
  • Needs to be prompted
  • Comfortable with silence
  • Sometimes soft spoken

Looking for these signs can help you spot those high in extroversion vs. low. The reality is that everyone is on a spectrum. Some people are in the middle or sway one way or another. The important thing is to look for the tendency to pull one way or another.

How to become extroverted

There will ly be times in your professional career when it’s advantageous to be more extroverted. For example, it can help to be more comfortable with groups, meet people easily, and hold conversations naturally without wondering what to say.

That begs the question: can an introvert become more extroverted? The answer is yes, with certain strategies. The five tips below can help bring out your more extroverted side.

1. Realize the benefits of both

Sometimes people who are more introverted feel negatively toward those loud, disorganized extroverts, and vice versa. Realize that both tendencies have strengths and weaknesses. Expanding your ability to behave more extroverted when the situation calls for it is a valuable skill in the workplace. 

2. Learn from others

Identify the extroverts you interact with personally and professionally and observe them closely. See what they do differently than you, and learn from their actions. 

3. Practice extrovert behaviors

While “fake it till you make it” is just a saying, there is some truth behind it. Practice behaving an extrovert—strike up conversations even if you don’t have specific reasons to talk, make eye contact and smile, be more present and get your head, share information about yourself, etc. The more you do what may not come naturally, the more comfortable you will become.

4. Plan for challenging situations

Social situations or times when they are the center of attention are draining to introverts. If you know that you have something coming up that requires you to be more extroverted, give yourself the time and space to prepare beforehand and recharge afterward.  

5. Use active listening skills

People enjoy being with those who actively listen when participating in conversations. Since introverts are often gifted listeners, this is an area where you can excel.

Instead of simply listening, though, use this natural ability to join in and ask questions that show genuine interest in what others say.

You might be surprised how others respond, and that when you put your mind to it, you can converse an extrovert. 

The spectrum of Extroversion

We all have tendencies that typically fall somewhere in between pure extroversion or introversion. Plus, it’s natural to act differently in different situations.

So can you be shy and an extrovert? Yes. Shyness doesn’t mean you want to be alone, just that you have a fear of social judgement. An extrovert can crave being with people but fear possible judgement.

And if you’ve heard of being an introverted extrovert, or an extroverted introvert, that’s when you need to remember that this personality trait is a spectrum. It’s natural to be more extroverted in certain situations, and more introverted in others. 

Recognizing this has given rise to the term ambivert—a person who has a balance of both introvert and extrovert qualities. The truth is, as humans we to neatly categorize and label, but personality is often more fluid than we’d . 

Extroversion in the workplace

There is no right or wrong amount of extroversion to seek for in the workplace. We all have strengths and weaknesses. The goal is to learn how to best work with people of different levels of extroversion so we can utilize their strengths and mitigate their weaknesses.

Understanding someone’s level of extroversion/introversion can be a valuable tool when hiring, especially for positions that require a lot of social interaction, sales or customer service. Journeyfront’s pre-employment assessments can help you find candidates that are the right fit for your job and culture. 


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