Monday, February 13, 2012
QUIET by Susan Cain; Read by Kathe Mazur
Ssssh! Quiet by Susan Cain rapidly became a bestseller in large part because she’s speaking for so many of us - introverts, quiet ones, shy folks. She’s not only speaking for us, she’s our champion with the reminder that we live in a culture that extols extroverts, viewing them as successful, real go-getters, and thus forcing their quieter cousins (roughly one-third of the population) to try to compete in that milieu. By doing so Cain posits we’re losing some of our best thinkers, leaders and workers.
Cain explains the great importance of knowing the differences between extroverts and introverts thus, those in leadership and management “have to understand that there is such a thing as different communication styles and not place a value judgment on one over the other.” In other words, the best idea for your company may just come from that shy man or woman sitting in a cubicle munching a sandwich at noon instead of joining fellow workers for lunch.
To further her case Cain notes some of our most outstanding leaders who were introverts - Abraham Lincoln, Rosa Parks, Eleanor Roosevelt. As she puts it we often force introverts to pass as extroverts, and in the process lose the introverts’ strengths.
There is much to be gleaned from Quiet. It has been called “An intriguing and potentially life-altering examination of the human psyche that is sure to benefit both introverts and extroverts alike.” That it is and very well read by Kathe Mazur, actress and audio book narrator par excellence who has over 100 titles to her credit and an Earphones Award on her mantel.
- Gail Cooke