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The voice of introversion at work: Experiences, misconceptions, and implications for practice

Ulus, Eda; Aben, Inge


Eda Ulus

Inge Aben
Senior Lecturer in Organisation Studies


This paper is a qualitative exploration of the lived experiences of introversion in management and working spaces. We critically interrogate the representation of introversion in management literature, in particular its juxtaposition to extraversion, and we argue that an analysis of individuals’ lived experiences of introversion, as explored through interviews, challenges misconceptions, with implications for organisational and management practices. We draw upon psychoanalytic and postcolonial frameworks to analyse our data, and to question the stark contrast between assumptions made about introversion in popular and academic literature, and the embodied, complex, diverse experiences of introversion as shared in our study by management practitioners and academics in the UK and the US. This project, through an empirical micro-focus on the nuanced experiences of introversion, has also raised questions about the devaluation of thinking within academic spaces. We note the implications of our work for a range of embedded dynamics in organisations, such as masculine norms, and we consider further expansion of this work in multinational organisational settings.


Ulus, E., & Aben, I. (2017, August). The voice of introversion at work: Experiences, misconceptions, and implications for practice. Paper presented at Annual meeting Academy of Management 2017

Presentation Conference Type Conference Paper (unpublished)
Conference Name Annual meeting Academy of Management 2017
Start Date Aug 4, 2017
End Date Aug 8, 2017
Acceptance Date Mar 15, 2017
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Keywords introversion, othering, lived experience, embodiment, academia
Additional Information Title of Conference or Conference Proceedings : Academy of Management 2017 Annual Meeting August 4 - 8, in Atlanta, GA.

This file is under embargo due to copyright reasons.

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