When you're shy, it can be hard to communicate, whether it's in your personal life or in the boardroom. You might be sitting in the background while your extroverted friends and coworkers keep each other entertained. While it can be difficult being the quiet one, it's not always a bad thing. Introverts can still thrive as entrepreneurs, and the steps below will tell you how:
1. Practice makes perfect
Getting up and talking in front of strangers, or even people you know, is a trying task when you're shy. You get nervous, your palms start sweating, and any mistake you make follows you for the rest of the presentation. It's stressful. However, if you practice over and over, you'll be better prepared and feel more comfortable, according to author and business etiquette expert Jacqueline Whitmore in Entrepreneur.
2. Take advantage of the Internet
These days, you don't have to come face-to-face for a meeting or networking. The World Wide Web has it all. You can network via LinkedIn or hold meetings on Google . Anything that you'd say in person can be put into words right on the Internet, according to Whitmore, no stuttering or sweating involved. You can even find financial tips online, and you don't even have to step foot in a bank with mobile banking.
3. Hire outgoing employees
As a shy person, customer service probably won't be your strong point. That's why it's important to have outgoing people in your company. Hire employees whose strengths make up for your weaknesses, Whitmore said. Leave them to handle the in-person interactions whenever possible while you work on other tasks. If you hire employees you can trust, you won't have any problem leaving them to handle the front-of-house duties.
4. Fake it 'til you make it
Unfortunately, if you're shy now, you'll probably always be shy. However, that doesn't mean you can't pretend to be an extroverted person. Sometimes you're going to have to appear in person, whether it's to hold a meeting, talk with clients or give a presentation – you can't hide behind a desk forever. You'll have to speak your mind and make sure you're heard, whether you're shy or not, founder and CEO of AudienceBloom, a content marketing firm, Jayson DeMers told Inc.
Being introverted doesn't mean you can't be successful , it just means you have to get creative. Whether that's establishing an online presence, managing from the background or faking it, you'll do just fine if you find a way that works for you.