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When Your Boss Says, ‘You Don’t Speak Up Enough’

By | Boom Shikha |

One of the main concerns I had as a younger introvert was how I was going to function in a corporate environment when the time came for it. I had barely been able to deal with all the requirements of high school and college. It had been stressful, to say the least.

The thought of group activities still causes goosebumps to crop up all over my body.

But a job is a much more serious affair — it isn’t as easy to let things slide as it would have been in school. In college, I enrolled only in courses that avoided group presentations or activities, and I focused entirely on studying really hard (alone) to get great grades. My academic years had nothing to do with extracurricular activities. I spent a lot of my time focused on solo activities like swimming and yoga.

As soon as I entered the corporate world, I knew I had entered the belly of a fearsome beast indeed. I had no idea how to behave at all. I was worried all the time that I would come across as stupid or clueless, because I had a hard time speaking up in meetings. My voice came out as a meek whisper (if I ever deigned to add to the conversation). And I spent all my time saying no to all the extroverted colleagues who wanted to go out drinking, dancing, partying, or bowling.

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