This is one of the many gifts the millennial generation is innovating in the leadership world of today. There is no longer this desire to be like everyone else. Individuality is the flavour du jour, accompanied with a deepening appreciation for diversity and variety.
One question that I've been stewing over lately is the correlation between personality and confidence.
How does one's propensity towards extroversion or introversion affect their level of confidence as a leader?
I'm a pseudo-sociologist junkie by nature. Armed with my keen powers of observation, there are some general realities. that I've discovered with having the privilege of interacting with hundreds of different leaders over the years...and this one is preoccupying my thoughts the most as of late.
The most confident people tend to be the most quiet.
Volume doesn't equal confidence. There is a time and place to rally people towards a cause using one's exuberance and energy, but there is also a time to be still and quiet in order to discover what is really happening on the leadership level internally, not just externally.
I've made the mistake of assuming that quiet person in the room is the one that needs to be encouraged or spurred on the most. Often times this had led to me swallowing both my feet right in front of them as I've unsuccessfully attempted to woo them towards the perceived elusive confidence I believe they are lacking.
Sometimes being quiet has allowed a person to embrace their identity at a deeper level. Those of us who tend to be loud may simply be attempting to control the environment in which we are seen or perceived so that it can continue to fuel our insecurity through verbal affirmation and relational reward.
If you've ever spent some time being still and enjoying a part of nature (mountains, beach, forest, etc.) you'll understand that there is a different layer of enjoyment when the noise and clutter are removed from the moment.
Leaders create spaces and opportunities to grow in confidence. When you think about who you are as a leader, what are you learning the most about remaining confident in who you are or in who those around you are meant to be?
Are you someone who is motivated by your own insecurity, or are you able to appreciate the rich diversity and variety that are essential to leadership health?