Set Introverts up for Meeting Success

Get quiet, more reserved attendees to interact and network effortlessly.

Connecting and engaging with outgoing attendees is the easy part of attendee management—but what about getting through to the quieter, shyer, more introverted attendees? It’s not as easy.

Susan Cain, author of “QUIET: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking,” suggests that one-third to one-half of Americans are introverts. She also suggests that many people globally put on a pretty good show of being extroverts, but they are actually natural introverts.

Work to engage this less outgoing population with these helpful tips on networking, learning environments and social media engagement.

Networking

An “introvert” is defined as “a quiet person who does not find it easy to talk to other people.” So—unlike extroverts—introverts may be slower to approach strangers and insert themselves into group conversations at networking events.

To help facilitate conversation, provide icebreakers on attendee name tags. The icebreaker prompts will start conversations for both introverts and extroverts.

In addition, make the food and beverage elements conducive to networking. Action stations and signature cocktails both give attendees simple ways to strike up a conversation.

Learning Environments

Since introverts aren’t likely to speak up in large crowds, when it’s time for discussion or conversation, offer smaller breakout sessions where they are more likely to converse.

Social Media

Social media channels for your meeting can engage quieter, more reserved guests. If attendees and speakers are having conversations online, using the established event hashtag, introverts can voice their suggestions, opinions and thoughts there, rather than speaking in front of a large group.

Social media also allows people to have conversations before the event and pre-network, which may make introverts more likely to approach someone at the meeting.