Introverts and Leadership One


Ben Woelk
Past President, Society for Technical Communication


Online Courses

Introverts and Leadership One

11 November to 16 December 2021 (Thursdays) 12 Noon to 1:00 PM Eastern Time (GMT-5)

No class on Thursday 25 November

How does an introvert lead? Introverts don’t fit the stereotypical leadership model in management literature. They're often unaware of their introvert strengths and how to maximize them in the workplace, much less become leaders. However, Cain, Laney, Kahnweiler, and others have increased our understanding of introversion and how it impacts leadership styles.

This course will explore the recent literature on introversion and the workplace, tools and techniques for discovering introvert strengths, and strategies for leveraging them. Students will identify success factors for introverts in leadership roles and will develop action plans for individual development.

The course combines 5 weeks of readings and other resources, online discussions, interviews with introverted leaders, and short reflection papers with a virtual workshop on improving verbal communication skills through improvisational exercises.


  • To develop knowledge of recent literature on introversion and the workplace
  • To develop understanding of introvert strengths
  • To apply introvert strengths to leadership
  • To improve verbal communication skills as leaders
  • To develop individual strategies for leadership development

Intended Audience:
Introverts seeking to develop self understanding of the strengths and weaknesses, introverts who want to grow in leadership, extroverts who want to better understand introverts in the workplace

Session 1: Introduction-what are introversion and extroversion

Session 2: Identifying and leveraging introvert strengths

Session 3: Introvert and extrovert leadership styles; Success factors for introverts in leadership roles

Session 4: Improvisation and communication for leaders

Session 5: Action plan for further leadership development

Access to the following books are required for this course:

  • Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain, any edition. This book has had a profound impact on many introverts reading it for the first time and has sparked an introvert movement in the workplace.
  • Please Understand Me II, Temperament, Character, Intelligence by David Keirsey. There is a Please Understand Me and a Please Understand Me II. Make sure you get the right one. This book will help you understand your online temperament inventory results.
  • If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look On My Face? My Adventures in the Art and Science of Relating and Communicating by Alan Alda.


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