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Don't Get Pushed Around: An Introvert's Guide to Getting What You Need at Work

Lesson 11 of 26

Learn to Read People


Don't Get Pushed Around: An Introvert's Guide to Getting What You Need at Work

Lesson 11 of 26

Learn to Read People


Lesson Info

Learn to Read People

We have to learn how to read other people, and I do think that people can be read kind of like a book. If you watch closely, and you can learn, because people are very predictable, and they act out of habit. We all do. So if you can learn what someone else's habits are, and notice, "Oh, they seem to say that same thing over "and over and over, so what does that mean about them?" And then, "What does that mean about how I need to respond "to them in order to get what I need from them?" So you may have to experiment with different behaviors or different requests or different modes of communication in order to get what you need from each and every different person once you've read them like a book. Now, also, reading body language, I think, is important, because this is when someone is very closed, or someone is open, or someone is kind of turning the other way, these are all things that you can pay attention to, and part of noticing something new, as opposed to focusing on what's going o...

n in your head. So you can learn to read and also speak body language, and I have a little tip coming up in the networking section, actually, about how to get out of conversations using body language, so stay tuned for that. And then, I just wanna make a comment about personality tests, because I think that when we talk about getting to know ourselves and getting to know other people, I'm not a big fan of personality tests, because I think they put us in boxes. And so if we decide, "Oh, I'm a this or I'm a that," then that means that you can't do or be these other ways, so they might be good for you to better understand yourself, but please try not to use them to analyze other people, because I don't think that's gonna help a lot. So the number one tool of curiosity is questions, as I've said. So when in doubt, ask a question, because you may interpret the same word very differently from another person who hears the exact same word. So if there's ever a doubt about what a word means or what a task means, please ask a question. And you may say to yourself, "Oh, that's a stupid question," or, "Oh, I should already know the answer to that question," but I think you'll be better off asking the question, potentially sounding stupid, and you can even preface it with, "This may be a stupid question, but," but you can avoid a lot of miscommunication if you take that extra time, and I think it's also part of laziness. I know that when I used to not ask certain questions, it was because, "Uh, it's not gonna matter," as if I know, or, "Uh, it won't be a problem," as if I know, and then it was. So don't think you know, and don't be afraid to look stupid. Instead of stating a fact, you can ask a question. So an example is when you're waiting for content, for example, from someone, and you didn't get it, and you think, they didn't send me the content, you could, instead of saying, "You didn't send the content," you can say, "Did you send the content?" Or, "If you sent the content, I didn't get it," so thinking first and reframing the question so that the person will receive it most openly, knowing who they are based on their past behavior. And then you can also verify with a question. Even if you think you know the answer, I think it can be very disarming, so you could say something like, "Are you aware that you didn't send me your feedback on that project yet?" Because people are very busy, and they've got a lot going on, and they may have written the email message and forgotten to send it. And so they thought they sent it, but you didn't get it, and this happens constantly. So verifying with a question will, I think, save you a lot of time.

Class Description

When it comes to getting ahead in the world of work, it seems that those who are bold, confident and willing to speak their minds are the ones who get the choicest projects and the loftiest promotions.

But what if you’re an introvert? What if you hate being the center of attention, get nervous before presentations, and avoid contact with your colleagues and superiors? Are you destined to remain on the lowest rungs of the corporate ladder?

According to Ilise Benun, an author and teacher known as the Marketing Mentor, the answer is an emphatic “No!” Ilise has created a treasure trove of tools and techniques to help the shyest and quietest among us succeed in the workplace. She’ll show you how to embrace your introversion while also learning the skills you need to advance your career and become a leader at work.

In this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Conquer your shyness and present yourself confidently.
  • Assert yourself when you need to, speak up at meetings and get recognized.
  • Take the credit you deserve for your accomplishments.
  • Communicate your strengths and what you’re capable of to the right people.
  • Identify when you’re feeling shy or fearful and how to handle it.
  • Observe other personality types and adjust your behavior accordingly.
  • Develop your confidence with concrete exercises.
  • Find your personal networking style so you can get what you want.
  • Improve your communication, presentation and meeting skills.



It was interesting to learn from your program what experiences other people have in certain situations and how similar or different they are to mine. And that’s it’s ok to “own” your inner introvert, and to work with it instead of against it. The good thing is, the more self-aware we become, the more aware and sensitive we can be towards others, thanks to shared knowledge and programs like yours. So thank you Ilise, for an enlightening program. I look forward to going back over it sometime.

Laurie Hagedorn

Ilise Benun is so easy to listen to! The information and messages she shares with us are valuable, up to date, and easily understood! I can't wait to hear more from her and will refer her to others who will benefit from her lessons!

Tiffany Butler

Perspective is everything. I left feeling more comfortable with the idea that life, as Ilise puts it, "is an experiment," and I don't have to know everything in order to be good at what I do. I can learn, adapt and modify as I go. The fear of being "found out" is what keeps plenty of us needlessly hiding behind the mask of introversion. Another big takeaway—don't assume you know what others are thinking/doing. I break this rule routinely and assume the worst, which is almost never the reality of the situation. I made it my NY resolution to stop doing that! Thanks, Ilise.