Introverts make up a third to a half the population, yet our schools and workplaces are designed for extroverts. This point is driven home with impact in “Quiet: The power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking, where author Susan Cain says: “And we're living with a value system that I call the New Groupthink, where we believe that all creativity and productivity comes from an oddly gregarious place.”
“Picture the typical classroom,” she writes on CNN.com. “When I was a kid, we sat in rows of desks, and we did most of our work autonomously. But nowadays many students sit in "pods" of desks with four or five students facing each other, and they work on countless group projects ~ even in subjects like math and creative writing.
“Kids who prefer to work by themselves don't fit, and research by educational psychology professor Charles Meisgeier found that the majority of teachers believe the ideal student is an extrovert ~ even though introverts tend to get higher grades, according to psychologist Adrian Furnham,” she continues.
“The same thing happens at work. Many of us now work in offices without walls, with no respite from the noise and gaze of co-workers,” Cain writes. “And introverts are routinely passed over for leadership positions, even though the latest research by the management professor Adam Grant at Wharton shows that introverted leaders often deliver better results. They're better at letting proactive employees run with their creative ideas, while extroverts can unwittingly put their own stamp on things and not realize that other people's ideas aren't being heard.”