• Sipping my coffee

Personality Does Matter: 3 Introvert Friendly Business Tips

Working alone in a coffee shop
Introvert thrive when work alone

Tahun 2018, my startup was chosen for joining a social enterprise bootcamp. The program was designed for 6 big topics dan di salah satu sesinya adalah tentang “personality”. During that session, each of us was being instructed to complete a personality test (link) and there was a bit of discussion here and there about how to understand other with different personalities and why startup founder should team-up with different personality people. It was a fun session but that’s all. I didn’t think this topic is really matter in running my business.

From that session, at least I learnt my own personality in much detail. I know I’m an introvert in general, and an INTJ in specific. Introvert dipersepsikan sebagai pemalu, pendiam, ga punya teman, ga suka kumpul-kumpul, anti-social dan penyendiri. Di dunia bisnis dan karier, introvert mostly dipandang sebelah mata karena tidak karismatik, tidak outspoken, seperti extrovert. Tapi sebenarnya introvert gain energy and insight from self-inside, dan bukan dari berinteraksi secara sosial seperti extrovert. Itu sebabnya introvert pada dasarnya: self-effacing, self-reliant, self-possessed, dan self-reflective (Reference: The Introvert Entrepreneur by Beth Buelow)

Then 2019 I was experiencing a setback both in business and personal – therefore I started blogging last year to ease my burnt out. Dilema to grow or not to grow plus konsekuensinya yang akhirnya bikin saya realized that I want a company of one business ternyata berkaitan dengan my type of personality. I questioned myself kenapa saya cukup obsessed with the concept company of one business. Salah satunya adalah: I prefer to work by myself – I work better solo, dan itu karena saya introvert – INTJ, and I was tired to constantly rely on different parties when running my circular economy startup (supplier, factory, retail, EO, etc). To make it worse, selama 2018-2019 I didn’t take any cuti, engga berlibur, only one short staycation. It means, I didn’t distance myself from work, from others dan ujungnya I failed to recharge my “battery”. Jadilah super exhausted!

Apparently, for introvert entrepreneur, according to Nate Nicholson, ada beberapa tips to help us to survive and success in running a business:

Ease to Automate/Outsource

Introvert itu lebih suka menjalankan segala sesuatunya sendiri, if our business required a lot of people to run it, our energy will be drained super quick. Jadi, apakah alternative full otomatisasi dan outsource bisa dijalankan untuk meminimalkan kontak dengan orang lain?

Should I understand this tip before I build my startup, I might have rethink to start my business. Running a circular economy business ampas kopi ini membuat saya as the founder, harus rajin ber-networking, meeting dan ikut bazaar or pop-up store untuk memperkenalkan inovasi ampas kopi which were difficult to outsource atau di-automate – masa iya meeting dengan potential partners mau di-outsource? After a bazaar event, saya bisa shutting down for a week to recharge my energy. Ketika mulai ada pemintaan for consignment, I couldn’t imagine that I have to hire sales promo staff, routinely checking my stock dan staff in each toko – ini bayangin aja udah berasa cape.

Minimal Interaction

Can we minimize interaction and use only email – we hate phone calls, don’t we?

Karakteristik introvert yang pendiam, mikir dulu baru ngomong, bikin kita cepat habis “batere” untuk continuously berinteraksi secara terus-menerus via telpon, chat panjang tak berujung dan meetings!

Unfortunately, my startup seringkali tidak bisa mengandalkan komunikasi via email. Most of the time, in purpose untuk mendapatkan business partner baik untuk urusan jualan, research, dan kerja sama lain, saya musti datang ke meeting – karena harus memperkenalkan produk, bawa sample to be tested, tried.

Introvert thrive when they work alone. This one is really a mantra for me. My startup depends on too many parties – menurut ukuran orang introvert, yang bikin tahun lalu saya burnt out

No Fixed Location and Business Hours

Introverts like to work alone without distractions. Introvert akan bekerja di jam-jam dan tempat di mana kita nyaman bekerja “sendiri” tanpa gangguan.

I’m so lucky to be able to run my business with no fixed business hours! My current effective hours are between 11am to 6pm – that’s after my hubby leaves to work, di mana saya sendirian at home. Once I tried to work at a coworking space, yes I was working alone to felt anxious karena terlalu banyak orang di coworking space tersebut – yes, sebenarnya kan kerja di co-working space itu supaya kita dapat network baru, but I failed to get to know anyone there.

Kalo kamu punya tip dan trick lain for introvert to run a successful business, please comment ya

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