introvert learners

3 Tips to Shoot Up the Learning Curve of Your Introvert Learners

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introvert learners

When I was a kid, I contracted polio. That took away my ability to walk and a large part of my mobility. I was devoid of any social network and lived in a highly impoverished and oppressed environment. I had no choice but to live with myself. Those environmental triggered me to grow up most of my childhood as an introvert.

I had an extreme inferiority complex that developed me into an introvert. I talked less and stayed within myself. I was not outgoing enough even to say hello to strangers.

The main thought in my childhood was how to learn faster so that I get noticed among predominantly extroverted classmates. As a general fact, the teachers back then usually used to pay more attention to active, highly vocal, extrovert students in the class.

Tied to a chair, with limited mobility and isolated in a room, I had no other weapon than to depend on my introvert tendencies. I needed to somehow figure out a way to use them to speed up my learning better than others.

In that zest, I probably read every single accelerated learning book available. However, none of those were written for introverted people. None of those guided how an introverted person should learn or leverage introverted preferences to learn better and faster.

I was gifted with a very analytical, critical, and experimental mind. So, I set on a path to do experiments on myself to find what could speed up my learning. It did not take me much longer to master that art and crack the code. I have earned over 100 international credentials and educational degrees in a very short period, including two doctorates.

How did I do this?

The answer is that I leveraged my significantly introverted tendencies.

I learned a fair deal about personality preferences through my explorations and research. I noticed that leveraging (or not leveraging) those personality preferences in a training program may positively (or negatively) impact the speed of learning of the corresponding group of learners. I observed how poorly the learning programs are designed, which do not cater evenly to both personality preferences. I investigated that there were some levers training designers and learning specialists could use in their programs to make learning effective for introverted learners.

THE INTROVERT LEARNING CHALLENGE

If you are a learning specialist or trainer, you might recall some seemingly shy, quiet, or backseat individuals in your training sessions. We have a label for such personalities. We call them introverts. While the challenge is prevailing elsewhere, it amplifies in leadership, management, or communication training in which trainers find it hard to train introverts. The fundamental issue is not that they don’t learn better. The real problem is that traditional methods designed for any training class are geared towards mostly extrovert personalities. The learners are required to present, converse, express, and demonstrate outwardly visible traits. When subjected to such ineffective training methods, some introvert learners resort to staying behind, and some do not receive enough support.

INTROVERT VS EXTROVERT PREFERENCES

I became a person with the largest friendship circle as I grew up. Today, I am now a professional speaker and have never come across as an introvert. In fact, I can seamlessly switch between these two labels depending upon where I am, what I am doing, whom I am interacting with, and the nature of the things I am doing.

As a performance scientist, I think introverts versus extroverts are situational preferences (or precisely the self-construed labels) that people tend to adopt for their most comfortable moments. The human mind does not respond to labels, but it may have particular preferences that develop over time. The way these behavioral patterns get ingrained in someone’s preferences has a lot to do with the environment, early childhood bringing, social interactions at a young age, and similar factors. These behavior patterns show some influence later in life, but these are not lines itched on the stones.

People do not deliberately choose to work or perform as extroverts or introverts. It seems like the human mind can adjust quickly and respond with the most appropriate behavior pattern (introvert or extrovert) in a situation, depending on the demand of the situation or task. An extrovert may want to get into an introvert shell once their energy diffuses. On the other hand, an introvert may adopt an extroversion outlook depending on the nature of the work. Also, it appears that one can switch between being introverted or extroverted depending on where they are, alone or with people, without losing the foundational personality.

How can you use this knowledge to design or conduct your training programs?


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About Dr Raman K Attri

Dr Raman K Attri is the world’s #1 authority on the science of speed in professional and organizational settings. He is the world's only professional speaker speaking on the topic of the science of speed. He is the author of 23 multi-genre books. As a performance scientist, he has been recognized as one of the leading ‘Transformational Business Leaders’ of 2022. He was named as one of the ‘Global 500 Leaders’ of 2021, alongside stellar leaders like Oprah Winfrey, Gary Vee, Jim Kwik, and Jay Shetty, to name a few. He has made his space as a true accelerated learning guru, earning over 100 international credentials and degrees, including two doctorates in the learning domain, apart from some of the world’s highest certifications. A corporate business manager, he has been featured and cited in over 125 media features in TV/radio shows, magazines, podcasts, and forums.

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