Extreme Introvert Here. For me to come out of my cave and be present in public is a HUGE mountain to climb. It can be done. Yes, you can start a conversation when you are an Introvert, trust me…
Talking to people is an essential element with any business. It is established that relationship building is the backbone of any success endeavor. But what do you do when talking is not your forte or even part of your personality?
Contrary to popular belief, you will find many successful entrepreneurs are introverts at heart. They may hold large stages and hold a captivated audience. The percentages are staggering. According to Forbes, at least 40% of the top executives claim to be introverts. If that is the case, the question is, how are they able to do that?
Like any skill that you can develop, speaking is one of them. Whether it is speaking to a friend, a small group of friends, or a crowd, one can develop the ease of speaking through practice and following a sequence of steps to be the Olympian of speakers. Yes, we need to follow the path of olympic athletes. We only see them in the spotlight but during any interview, you will find that they all started out with a small skill that with constant nurturing, training, pushing, falling, tweaking, standing up again and again, until they land of their feet once, than twice.. It truly is unwavering practice and perseverance they made their way to the elite.
Start Out With a Script by Your Side
One of first times I did a Facebook Live, granted this was by no means a TED Talk or even to a crowd. I had jotted down a few key points on a post it note and stuck it to the side of the computer. You could tell from my constant glance towards the Right, that I was reading or referencing something. For video marketing, this is by no means effective when you do not look into the camera but please remember I am an introvert at heart and if I even hit the LIVE button, that was a giant step for me. As I come to the 100th Facebook Live video created, you will see the progression of my video skills. Not only am more relaxed in posture, I am no longer looking towards the right, and I am ok with whatever direction the Facebook Live goes.
Conversations Do Not Need to be Face to Face
In today's day and age, you can communicate via Messenger. Or in introvert terms that are more familiar, you can talk right at your fingertips. Messenger marketing is becoming widely used and effective as face to face (which is probably still the best connection), video chat, or phone call. This is a great place to start behind the curtain and move your way up as you feel more comfortable.
Nobody likes a curmudgeon so keep light and fun in your messages. Appropriately use emojis, exclamation marks, and drop a few LOLs. Be inquisitive (not in an interrogation way) about the other person.
Active Prospecting vs. Passive Prospecting
The word ‘prospecting' is a very scary term that will immediately evoke adrenaline and nauseating feelings in a true introvert. Add the word active to it and WHAM, you can start to taste the gall coming up in the back of your throat. Though Active Prospecting will produce faster and quicker results (when done right of course), rest assured Passive Prospecting, or what I like to call Passive Connection is still quite viable and can be effective form of communication to your audience.
The results you want to obtain may take longer, however, one thing you must project is a LOT of value. Be valuable to the point that someone requires what you have to offer. That you can do well within your own means of reading to build your knowledge or taking action to grow your experience.
Stick to What You Know (This is for Beginners.)
This is true. If you were asked to speak about something you don't really know much about or feel uncomfortable speaking about, chances are you are going to be at a loss of words or maybe your mind will go completely blank! Generally if there is a topic that you simply cannot stop talking about, you can steer the conversation there just to get comfortable with the idea of talking.
For example, I was born and raised in New York and I have a total love for New York. I found that if the conversation steered in that direction, I seriously could not stop talking about it! When you're having a conversation with someone, if you're genuinely interested in learning about them, a natural tendency is to ask where they are from? When that question comes around, it seems to be a great segue to talking about my favorite topic!
Give an introvert a topic that they can geek out about, you've made a friend for life!
What is the BEST Topic???
This is a no brainer. Get them to talk about themselves! According to Scientific American, they conducted studies to figure out neurological basis for why people like to talk about themselves??
“You may like to talk about yourself simply because it feels good—because self-disclosure produces a burst of activity in neural regions associated with pleasure, motivation, and reward.”
So, only you can talk about yourself! No one else knows you better and it actually lights up the happy areas in your brain! You don't need any knowledge for this. Become the interviewer of their life, and not only will you produce happy thoughts, you'll make a friend for life.
Always End With a Question
The biggest conversation killer is when you just end in a short sentence and it doesn't lead to further conversation! Am I right? As introverts, we don't like small talk so maybe we do this unintentionally but on a subconscious level… we are ending the conversation so we can make our escape.
When getting to know someone more than on the surface level, ask them questions about their interests or questions about them! Generally, most people like to answer inquisitive minds who are wondering what they are like. That kind of interest genuinely lowers the guards and allows for more sharing. However, if you look super uptight about it, it might look uncomfortable.
Be sure to be able to answer the same question coming back at ya! When asking questions (and maybe come up with 3 generic ones that you can ask) be prepared with your own personal answers as well.
How to Start A Conversation When You Are An Introvert
Yes you can be an entrepreneur even as an introvert.
Actually read how introverts may be more ideal business owners than extroverts…
Whatever the case,
Go Out there and Start Making Meaningful Connections,
Your Biggest Fan,
See what my mentor, who is an introvert is sharing how he is able to grow an 8-figure business without having to prospect, throw home parties, or face to face active prospecting.
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