Quiet by Susan Cain – Book Review

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain
Published by Broadway, an imprint of Random House

America is the land of the extroverts, or so our national mythology goes. In truth, some 1/3 of Americans are introverts, and the number is even higher in other countries. In Quiet, Susan Cain addresses both the problem of how introverts can succeed in a world that values extroversion, and the ways that introverted leadership benefits companies, as well as the issue of introverted students in schools that value participation and group work.

Quiet is an absolutely fascinating book. Cain quite ably makes the case for the value of introverted leadership, and the problems that come from shutting it out (such as some of the behaviors that led to the most recent economic crash). Perhaps what is most valuable is the explanation of how we got to this place. The American population is already more extroverted than many (perhaps due to immigration patterns), but we have not always been as enamored as the extrovert ideal as we are now.

This is a well-reasoned and informative book. If you aren’t an introvert yourself, you likely have one in your close family or one close to you at work, and Quiet can help you understand the way that (or those) introvert(s) can contribute. Highly recommended.

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