//WebSights Header HTML Script Skip to Main Content

Dear HR Manager

Dear HR Manager,

I am in a bit of a pickle. I was recently promoted to management from an individual contributor role. This is good news, except for the fact that I am discovering my introverted nature does not jibe with the expectations for this job. In my old role, it was not uncommon for hours to go by where I did not speak to another human. My new boss let me know in no uncertain terms that building working relationships with others, socializing and networking is a big part of my manager job. How can I build connections in this new role?

– Introvert Seeking Connections

Dear Introvert Seeking Connections,

First off, congratulations on your promotion! It sounds like the company observed your strong performance and noticed your potential. Let’s figure out how we can tackle the networking part of your job in a manner that is true to who you are. The good news is you are not alone.

Introverts are estimated to make up 25% to 40% of the population.

This means that there are very good chances that some of your colleagues have similar preferences.

My question to you would be, what sort of social interactions make you feel comfortable, or at least, less squeamish?

  • If your answer is the virtual kind, use technology to start building connections. emails, IMs, and virtual calls have a role in corporate networking and may provide just enough comfort to encourage you to start outreach.
  • If you feel more comfy in person, try asking someone out for coffee. Start by asking someone else that seems to shy away from the crowd as well. And a coffee (or insert beverage here) is a good place to start because it is short. Remember, this is a new skill you are developing so it will take time to try new things and see what works.

Be patient with yourself, and remember, there are many ways to network.

– HR Manager

SOURCE: United Benefit Advisors (UBA)