“A shift will happen in your business when you start being the authentic you and stop putting on a business face when you network.” – Monika Parkin, AMP
In this episode, Monica Parkin, AMP, provides some great tips for the introverted engineer to help them excel in their engineering career. One lucky listener will also win a copy of her book. To enter, tell us why you think networking for engineers is important by leaving a comment below.
Here Are Some of the Key Points Discussed About the Introverted Engineer:
- An introverted engineer must realize that they must work on their social anxiety to have a productive career. Focus on being yourself around other people and not go networking with business in mind. Connect with people on a personal level by being yourself around them. When you are trying to be someone you are not, you are essentially telling your brain to lie and remember everything about this new person you have become. It will cause you to feel uncomfortable and your brain will become overwhelmed.
- There are big differences between introverts and extroverts, and each one brings different skills to the table. The introverted engineer tends to be a deep listener and a problem-solver and works surprisingly well in teams because of their qualities. Listening to clients helps to find the problem areas better and makes it easier to find the solutions.
- Engineers do come across as introverted because they are highly organized, already have solutions to problems, and they converse in deep, meaningful conversations. They bring different skill sets that are valuable in different ways that bring a form of excellence to the table.
- It does not matter how good your team is. If you are not giving them the best opportunities, they will not be able to shine. An organization must create an authentic culture where its people are not afraid to be themselves. Ask how your people want to be communicated with. Introverts usually do not like small talk, whereas extroverts need it to warm up to the conversation. Figure out what their skills are so that you can place them in your organization to make the most out of their personalities.
- Networking is important because people buy relationships, not products. People notice people who notice them. Look what you can do to support people because people want to support people who support them. When someone does something for us, we subconsciously look for something we can do for them. Get involved with things that you are passionate about. It is where you will meet people and get to know them on a personal level and have an opportunity to let your skills shine.
- The only way to better your communication skills is to practice them as much as possible. You do not get good at anything by not doing it. Start in a small way and then progress as time goes on and your confidence grows. If small talk is a problem area for you, make a list of questions that you can ask people so that your brain does not go blank when you are approached. Decide to talk to some people every day and then consider the good that came from it daily.