How you prefer to bake your cake has enormous implications for team meetings and creative problem-solving.
Idea Implications for Extraversion and Introversion Preferences
Extraversion and Energy
There’s transparency in our thought process because we’re literally thinking out loud to understand ourselves. We think-edit-speak-in-a stream-of-consciousness and if we are excited, we can speak at race track speed for an extended time. (Anyone twitching yet?)
In our extraverted, external process, we’re tossing about ideas and ingredients, creating as we talk. We present to our colleagues (spouses, family and friends) a half-baked cake.
Our thoughts are in transition. The more we talk, the more we understand where we’re going. In fact, we rarely know the conclusion until we’ve talked it through. We’re also known to embarrassingly blurt things out and then desperately long for a TAKE IT BACK button. In meetings, we can use up our talking ticket without having presented a complete and coherent thought. Frustrating!
Introversion and Energy
These pauses are not because we’re disinterested or have checked out, but because our brain is processing the information. We Think – Edit – Think – Edit… and then speak.
In our introverted, internal process, we are often silent and expressionless until we complete our thought process. We present to our colleagues (spouses, family and friends) a baked cake. Then we take our place at the table and express our ideas to completion. It may feel like too much talking (believe it or not) to others, but we’ve thought it through and will now share it with you. So don’t interrupt.
The Tension Builds
When extraverted preferences encounter silence, they keep talking because they think their introverted colleagues aren’t listening or engaged. Which further shuts up and irritates the introverted preferences because now there’s even less space for them to think-edit and then speak.
Tips if You Are a Half-Baked (Extraverted) Cake
Count to 10 when there is silence! You will allow for the pregnant pause, and the introverted ideas to emerge. The silence will feel wrong, awkward, tortuous – like a wasted eternity. However, you will be richly rewarded by what will emerge.
Tips if You Are a Fully-Baked (Introverted) Cake
Use a bookmarker in conversation to let your extraverted colleagues know you are present, listening and engaged. Remember, they can’t see anything on your face because you’re processing it internally. So they’re probably thinking the worst. Say OUT LOUD one or more of the following – regularly: Hmm…Yes…Interesting…I hear you…I’m thinking…
When We Welcome Our Diversity
Baked or half-baked, we’re a 50/50 split in the population. And we all do both, all the time. Back and forth. However, Psychological Type theory means one of these two areas is where we FIRST and most naturally get our energy.
I’m interested in joy, creativity and innovation in my conversations. If this interests you, too, give these two tips a try. In the reciprocity and exchange of our ideas, tremendous potential awaits.