Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Ambiverts - the Happy (and Successful) Middle

Although the concept of ambiversion has been around for some time, it has gotten a closer look with new research conducted by Adam Grant, a professor at Wharton School of Management. His work entitled, "Rethinking the Extraverted Sales Ideal: The Ambivert Advantage" will be published soon in Psychological Science. To get the gist of the study, read Daniel Pink's recent article in the WP where he examines Adam's study which upends the conventional thinking on successful personality types. Most people believe that extroverts make the best leaders and introverts the worst. While it's true that introverts are not very successful salespeople or leaders, it turns out that extroverts aren't much better either! Rather, people who are somewhere in between, the ambiverts, are actually the most successful. Ambiverts are better at reading people and have better judgement in knowing when to speak up and when to keep their own counsel. Pink states, "They’re not quiet, but they’re not loud. They know how to assert themselves, but they’re not pushy." Pink himself is a well-known author and journalist and has written about the changing workplace, so his WP article on Adam's research falls into his area of expertise. It turns out that most people do fall in the ambivert category, which is a happy state of affairs for most of us!

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