Quiet Influence by Jennifer Kahnweiler

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Jennifer Kahnweiler is an extrovert. She is also one of the most well-known introvert champions in the US. At first sight, this would seem to be a contradiction in terms, but in fact, it just makes this book all the more interesting.

If you take the book at face value, it is a really clear, simple and well thought-out analysis of our natural introvert strengths and how to use them to make an impact in an extrovert-oriented culture. The influencing potential of each strength (Taking quiet time; Preparation; Engaged listening; Focused conversations; Writing; Thoughtful use of social media) is clearly demonstrated and the sections explaining the pitfalls of overuse are also very helpful.

But the fact that it is written by an extrovert makes the book itself much more influential than just another useful read for introverts. The author shows a deep understanding of introversion and a real passion for her message, but her extroverted personality makes possible a slightly more detached approach to the subject. This, I think, makes it more accessible to extroverts and engages them as partners in our journey.

Kahnweiler’s experience is living proof that the introvert-extrovert continuum is not just a one-way street. Yes it is hugely important, both for introverts and our society, that we introverts learn to nurture our quiet strengths. But this book demonstrates there is enormous value too in extroverts learning to “take a walk on the quiet side”. We can all benefit from engaging more with our less dominant side.

So once you’ve taken on board the sound advice in this book, pass it on to your extrovert friends and colleagues. It will help them understand you better as well as contribute to a more balanced and understanding society.

Click the link to view this book on Amazon Quiet Influence: The Introvert’s Guide to Making a Difference

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