So You're An Introvert? Here's Some Career Advice

Promising professions--and interview tips!--for introverts.

A few months ago, we wrote about how to interact with the introverts in your life. But it's not just social situations from which introverts tend to shrink. There's also the problem of work. After all, an introvert may not thrive as a door-to-door salesman, a news anchor, or a trial attorney. But according to this infographic from Best Masters, there are many careers (and well-paying ones!) for less social types. Check out the chart to see which job might be good for you. And pick up some tips about how the introverted should prepare for that big job interview. You might even discover an unexpected passion along the way. Medical Records Tech anyone?

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  • Judy Blackshear

    I'm troubled by the conflation of introversion with social anxiety. Just because I need downtime and quiet time to concentrate and recharge does not imply that I am incapable of working with people. It may be true (honestly I'm not sure if it is) that all people with social anxiety are introverts. But it is not true that all (or even most) introverts suffer from crippling social anxiety. I feel for people with strong social anxiety, I really do. But that is not the same as introversion. I am an introvert. I can work with people. I can even lead people. I can even sell. In my selling job, I tend to get very wired and "up", and drained after an extended period. At the end of the day - or whenever I can get it - I need quiet, private down time to recharge. Sure, a little understanding of personality differences goes a long way, but please don't paint all introverts as requiring kid-glove-handling and special treatment.

  • my classmate's ex-wife makes $77 every hour on the internet . She has been without a job for six months but last month her pay was $20788 just working on the internet for a few hours. hop over to here

  • Melissa Jansen

    I'm an introvert. I'm pretty shy, especially around people I don't know. And I have Social Anxiety Disorder, which in the past has been severe enough to prevent me from working.

    I could really relate to most of the article, and I'm surprised that people were so offended. Not all introverts have trouble finding a job that fits, but I certainly do. I don't have a degree (yet, I'll be starting school in September), and very little experience- and all the jobs I qualify for that I've been able to find call for social, outgoing people. Customer service jobs. Retail, call centers, waiting tables. I have to put on an act while I'm at work- I have to fake enthusiasm for meeting lots of new people if I'm going to get and keep a job at this level.

    The other readers who reviewed this may be doing okay, but some of us aren't. It was nice to get some encouragement. Thank you for this article.

  • I find this offensive.

    This perpetuates the notion that introversion limits people. The jobs profiled here seem to be those with minimal interaction and they seem to be supports - e.g. dental technician rather than dentist; medical records technician rather than health care provider.

    As others here have noted, introversion does not equate to shyness. I'd also add that it does not diminish a person's leadership skills or intelligence.

    Rather, because of the way they process information, introverts can be quite analytical and they can be quite attuned to others. The qualities of introversion can make people really good at the many jobs that require thoughtful analysis and careful/caring interactions, and I wish examples of these had been highlighted here.

  • P Mort

    Given this article and a few others, I'm just going to assume that nobody at Fast Company knows what an introvert actually is.

  • Elle

    This is a horrible article and inaccurate representation of introverts. I am trying to figure out why FastCo would tweet this in December when the original was posted in September and was clearly ripped apart by readers in the comments. You should have just let this article die, FastCo.

  • Matt

    Where in the world did you get those salary estimates? 60k is NO WHERE NEAR the average for a graphic designer. Do your research author, pathetic.

  • muledriver

    I am an introvert, who has panic attacks. But I work with the public every day involving public speaking. I give 5-8 one hour guided tours daily. It is possible for me because I have a great degree of control over my work environment. It is surprising to me, how many people I meet in my industry consider themselves introverts. I think having control over your work environment, having obtainable goals and having a low-conflict work environment are more important to an introvert that actually what job you do. This article seems to assume that all introverts are math or computer people.

  • Yup

    Poor Jennifer probably just wrote this article to make money, she wasn't expecting nasty criticism… I think she should go to a frat party, so she can effectively analyze the behavior of extroverts.

  • coletteinfp

    Wow, this is a travesty to introverts. My eyes nearly popped out when I saw the words "shy" and "social anxiety disorder" , as if there's something wrong with us. I am an infp, an introvert, but I wouldn't consider myself shy. Please do your research first. Susan Caine's Quiet might help you understand what introversion is.

  • Teri

    "If you're shy, chances are you've mastered digital communication...Show the interviewer that even if you're not particularly eloquent in person, you can truly express yourself in text"

    You have got to me kidding me. This is a joke, right?

  • Hi

    I thought the diagrams were pretty hilarious, they make the introvert seem so alienated, like they're from another planet or something. Look at it this way, if there weren't so many introverted people in the world, then we wouldn't have scientists, researchers, chemists, biologists etc. the world would be one big social party and humankind would take eons to evolve !

  • SH

    Yea, let's just take this article down and pretend it never happened.

    This whole thing feels like those old films and pamphlets explaining homosexuality to straight people.

    This article is actually an accurate presentation on the view of introverts from the extroverted perspective. It makes introverts sound like we have some sort of retardation.. When really, most of the time we're (or at least I am) sitting here thinking.. "I wish this ignorant extrovert would shut their mouth and stop spreading their stupidity.."

  • Tracy Grammer

    the author lost me at this: "there are many careers (and well-paying ones!) for less social types." good grief.

  • Kayls

    Very disappointed that this article was published by a website that I love and respect for their well researched material. As someone who works in the psychology realm I highly recommend that the author recheck her facts - the understandings of extraversion and introversion in terms of Jung's theory are incorrect. He saw them as where people draw their energy from. Social phobia and social anxiety disorder are mental illnesses that affect both extraverts and introverts and have a low correlation in terms of Jung's concepts of extraversion and introversion. Next time how about you do some proper research - the type that we we have come to expect from Co.Create.