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

Lesson 18 of 26

Playing Other Roles


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

Lesson 18 of 26

Playing Other Roles


Lesson Info

Playing Other Roles

Now, I just want to talk a little bit about when you are presenting it may not be the most comfortable thing that you do until you get used to it. So one idea about how to do it is this idea of playing another role. Maybe you consider yourself shy, maybe you are an introvert. But there are certain times, especially when presenting, where you can't be. Where that will be detrimental to you. So instead of okay, I'm gonna have to do something I hate doing or I'm not really good at, think about it as a role, as if you are acting. Maybe even fake it til you make it, because there's something amazing that happens when you do something new. It's part of what I've heard described as a virtuous cycle. So you do something and you realize, oh, that wasn't so bad. That feeds you to do a little bit more. You think okay, this is actually working. So it's this cycle where it keeps getting better and better as opposed to a vicious cycle where you do something and it wasn't good and then you spiral dow...

n into your head. You have a choice between choosing the virtuous cycle and the vicious cycle but I find that if you can start doing something and actually embody it before you may feel ready or confident, then that will create the readiness. That will create the confidence that you can then build on. Does that make sense? Okay, good. 'Cause it's an experiment, all of this. Explaining some of these ideas, so sometimes they make sense. This idea of what roles do you play, or what roles can you play, let's do a little whiteboard with the audience, and maybe the online audience also. Can you share with me a role that you play that may not be you? Certain situations? At work? Ivana? Sometimes I have to play the educator. So what does that involve? Maybe breaking down why certain elements are positioned on the project that way. While it's obvious for a designer, for the client it might be a chance for you to educate them. Is that against what you normally would do? Definitely. As you do it does it get easier? It does, for sure. It's all based around how you present yourself and the vocabulary you use. Excellent, thank you, Ivana. Anyone else? Different roles that you play? No? Tiffany? A fixer. Fixing projects that have gone sideways for a client, or helping them to solve a problem that they have no idea where to start or how to begin, or where even to go to get it done. Excellent. Do we have any examples out there? We have a Gene who just chimed in and said comedian. I tend to make jokes when I'm feeling nervous. And then Shawn, the design bartender, says I often play the mediator. This idea of playing a role and giving yourself a job actually go hand-in-hand. So even if it's play the role of the host, or play the role of the waiter, here, would you like another drink? Here, can I get you some more food? Oh, these Swedish meatballs are great. Whatever you need to do, that can be very helpful. So think of it as not changing yourself, not necessarily doing something you'll never be good at, but here's a role I need to play at the moment. Laurie? Sometimes I can only think about questions like how's the weather? It's like stating the obvious. So then I back myself into the corner, like okay. Where's this conversation going? But I think the weather actually these days, because there's so much interesting weather, could be a good way to get into a conversation. What's happening with the fires, or anything. Where were you in that last hurricane? Anything. James, microphone. I actually thought of one. Sometimes depending on who I'm around depending on if the person I know likes to talk or if they like to be shy, I can choose whether I'm gonna be shy or be lead conversator. That's a really interesting point. It's in response to the other person. If they're playing one role, then you perhaps automatically take the other role. That's a really good strategy. Instead of boxing yourself into how are two shy people gonna talk to each other. I like that.

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.