“He’s fast on his feet” or “She has a clear head on her shoulders.” “He’s definitely a thought-leader in the industry.” These current kudos pique a leader’s attention. After all, leaders look to hire, promote, and listen to those who think clearly and communicate well.

But what if you’re naturally quiet and slow to speak up in a crowd?  How do people really gauge how well you think—particularly when your interactions are brief and infrequent?  Can you still convey the same sense of being an astute, clear thinker as your more outgoing colleagues?

I think you can.

the ceo magazine, professional relationships,
Jennifer Kahnweiler, Author, The Genius of Opposites

In 1998 I accepted a job as a director of employee development at a utility company. I was pretty pumped with the chance to start some new initiatives. Amy was assigned as my assistant. I came full of enthusiasm and couldn’t get the words and ideas out fast enough. But the more I talked, the less Amy did. The more I revved my enthusiasm, the more disinterested she seemed.


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