At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled "quiet," it is to introverts that we owe many of the great contributions to society--from van Gogh’s sunflowers to the invention of the personal computer.
Passionately argued, impressively researched, and filled with indelible stories of real people, Quiet shows how dramatically we undervalue introverts, and how much we lose in doing so. Taking the reader on a journey from Dale Carnegie’s birthplace to Harvard Business School, from a Tony Robbins seminar to an evangelical megachurch, Susan Cain charts the rise of the Extrovert Ideal in the 20th century and explores its far-reaching effects. She talks to Asian-American students who feel alienated from the brash, backslapping atmosphere of American schools. She questions the dominant values of American business culture, where forced collaboration can stand in the way of innovation, and where the leadership potential of introverts is often overlooked. And she draws on cutting-edge research in psychology and neuroscience to reveal the surprising differences between extroverts and introverts.
Perhaps most inspiring, she introduces us to successful introverts--from a witty, high-octane public speaker who recharges in solitude after his talks, to a record-breaking salesman who quietly taps into the power of questions. Finally, she offers invaluable advice on everything from how to better negotiate differences in introvert-extrovert relationships to how to empower an introverted child to when it makes sense to be a "pretend extrovert."
This extraordinary book has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how introverts see themselves.
©2012 Susan Cain (P)2012 Random House
"An intriguing and potentially life-altering examination of the human psyche that is sure to benefit both introverts and extroverts alike." (Kirkus)
"Cain gives excellent portraits of a number of introverts and shatters misconceptions. Cain consistently holds the reader’s interest by presenting individual profiles, looking at places dominated by extroverts (Harvard Business School) and introverts (a West Coast retreat center), and reporting on the latest studies. Her diligence, research, and passion for this important topic has richly paid off.-" (Publishers Weekly)
"An intelligent and often surprising look at what makes us who we are." (Booklist)
I loved this book. Originally I picked it up to learn a little bit more about the introverts in my life, but I learned a lot about myself too. For starters, I learned that I'm not an extrovert, not at least in the pure sense. I learned that there is something called an Ambivert which is somewhere halfway between introvert and extrovert. That's what I am and it makes a lot of sense. I appreciated how Susan Cain shared techniques for working with introverted children and ways to improve communication with partners who have a different temperament than one's own. I found myself thinking about my own research in different ways and really appreciated the research that was presented in this book. If you want to better understand the introvert or extrovert in your life, I highly recommend it!
As an introvert, I was taken on a journey where I understand more of my behavior and my fellow man. It is a must read especially for those who are raising children.
Anyone who works with people, and strives on performance of those people must read/listen to this book, and after that keep learning about personalities and ways of communication.
Highly useful info, well presented. Despite recitation of a lot of studies and statistics, this book was very easy to assimilate and follow. I usually glaze over when I hear numbers and studies, but here I found myself rewinding (or jumping back) to make sure I got it right--I didn't want to miss any of the information : )
Susan, thank you for this book. As a moderate introvert myself and a father of an introvert kid this book is really illuminating.
In addition it was entertaining and extremely well narrated.
Insightful, heady, game changing, and totally worth sharing. I discovered my own pattern of seeking introverts as intimate partners despite being a classic extrovert. I get now why that is, what the barriers which caused friction, and what I can do moving forward. Fantastic book.
I absolutely loved this book. it explained so much and help me gain a full understanding of who i am. She is on point with everything she said. Great narration as well.
I've taken MBTI and Firo-B assessments and had explanations of them from organisational behaviour experts which didn't give me anything like the deep insights that I got from this book.
My wife and I are both introverts, as are our children, and I feel that we understand ourselves and our family better thanks to this book. I also got really actionable advice for living in a society with an extrovert ideal. Sometimes I felt that there was a little bit of extrovert bashing, but I had to challenge myself: was I simply sticking to the societal norm where my style is undervalued? In the end I had a more nuanced view of my own strengths and weaknesses. I would strongly recommend this book to extroverts and introverts, both adolescents and adults.
I think this is a great book for anyone to read because whether you are an introvert or not a lot of people you know and interact with in the world are. This book has given me a lot of insight on myself and my children. Thank you.
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