The Introvert's Edge

The Introvert's Edge

Christian | February 10, 2023 | Other

Are you an introvert that hates networking? Do you feel like you are
required to have the “gift of gab” to succeed? This can be mentally and
physically exhausting. Christian Napier and Spencer Horn host best
selling author and rapid growth coach, Matthew Pollard, who debunks the
myths about what it takes for introverts to succeed in networking,
sales, and team performance.

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Christian Well, hello, everyone, and welcome to another super
exciting episode of the Teamwork a Better Way Podcast.
I'm Christian Napier, joined by my partner in not crime,
but partner in podcasting, Spencer Horn. Spencer, how
are you?

Spencer Wonderful, Christian. Good to be with you today, and
more excited than ever to be with you with our guest
that will announce it shortly.

Christian I'm super excited for the guest. Before we get there,
you were telling me right before we joined the air that
you were recently down in San Diego. So what were you
doing down there?

Spencer Yeah, I just got back last night. I was in San Diego
speaking to a company. A lot of people are familiar with
peer advisory groups. Vistage is one of them. There's
young entrepreneurs. But I was actually working with the
Vistage staff and not just the groups around the
country, so that was a lot of fun. It was in the La
Jolla office, and it was beautiful. Had a great time.

Christian Well, I'm glad to hear it, and I'm glad that you're also
back here in colder climes you're in Salt Lake City.
It's a little bit chillier than it was down there in
sunny San Diego, but very, very happy that you've
returned safe and sound and extremely excited for our
next guest because his message resonates with me. I'm an
introvert, and I've probably been waiting for this
entire show for this conversation. I'm super excited.
Spencer, why don't you introduce our special guest

Spencer Absolutely. I'm going to bring them on screen while I
talk about them. This is Matthew Pollard. Did I say that
right? Matthew Pollard. Let's get that right. And
Matthew is responsible for five multimillion dollar
business success stories, and all before the age of 30.
So, already jealous, right? His humble beginnings, the
adversity he faced, and his epic rise to success that
really show anyone with the right motivation and the
right strategies can really achieve anything they put
their mind to. He's going to demonstrate that and share
that with us today. Today, Forbes calls him, quote,
unquote, the real deal global Gurus lists him as a Top
30 Sales professional. Top Sales? Worldwide Magazine
named him a Top 50 speaker. And Big Speak lists him as
an international top ten sales trainer. He's also the
best selling author of the Introverts Edge book series,
and that has sold over 75,000 copies. It has been
translated into 16 languages. And Matthew, I met you at
the CSP CPAE conference in Dallas in December, and I was
part of his mastermind group. And I have to say, when he
was giving feedback, I was like, okay, keep talking. And
other speakers were like, well, wait a minute, I don't
want to hear from you. Keep talking. Because it was just
so valuable. Welcome, Matthew. We're so glad to have

Matthew Thank you for having me. I'm ecstatic to be here.

Spencer Great. So let's get right into it. So your first book,
highly successful. And tell us, why did you write it?
What was the impetus behind it? What was the motivation?
And why do you think it's so successful?

Matthew I think it's because introverts are tired of feeling
like second class citizens. I mean, the truth is we're
not second class citizens. Our path to success is just
different. And the whole world has been either doing one
of two things saying poor little Sarah, or Johnny is
introverted. Let's push them to be more extroverted, to
mix with other people, and to follow what those
extroverts do. That's the way that we should do it, and
that's just not true. But then also, there was this
whole load of literature out there that said, okay, poor
you, you're an introvert. Let me show you how to survive
in an extroverted world. And I believe it's an
introverted world. I believe that we introverts have the
skills to dominate in all of those so called extroverted
arenas, in sales, in networking, in leadership, in
really speaking from stage, everything. I mean, you were
talking about peer groups just before, and Vistage is a
great group to share value and resources. I just got
back from Detroit, which was much colder than where I am
in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and that was a great
peer group as well. I spoke for for EO, which is the
entrepreneurial organization, and it blows my mind how
often the moment I start sharing yeah, I cover
strategies like differentiation, niche marketing, sales
systemization. I speak heavily on storytelling because I
believe that introverts leveraging, that there's a lot
of science behind that which we can talk about, and it
gives them, in a lot of ways, the edge. But when I start
talking about my introverted journey, there's a
revelation for a lot of introverts that are listening
because they've been told that they can't be as
successful as a small business owner, or they have to
accept not getting that leadership role because they
don't have that natural ability. And for them, he
transforms their view of introvertion. Because I believe
that. I mean, who wants a leader that's not great at
active listening and not great at empathy? Who wants to
speak to a salesperson that doesn't have those
qualities? And a good friend of mine, Ivan Meisner, the
founder of B, and I the world's largest networking group
in the world, by the way, he's another introvert. When
we started talking about the qualities that make an
amazing networker, funnily enough, the qualities you
distribute to a lot of extroverts weren't on the list.
It was the qualities that introverts have that ranked
really, really high. Now, that's not to say that
extroverts can't learn those things, but it just shows
how much we've got it wrong. We believe that gift of gab
is required for these things, when actually what makes
us successful is actually the qualities we introverts
have in spades. And I think that is what really led to
my first book success because I came out and I have to
say I started with sales purely because I don't think I
would have had the guts to say out loud that introverts
make the best salespeople if it wasn't my first book. So
I didn't want to write it personally. I started by
suggesting to every other sales influencer that I knew
that was introverted. I said, you need to write this
book on introverted selling. Somebody needs to not me.
And there are so many people that you will know well
that are introverted, that are in that top 30 list of
sales professionals. But everyone said, no one's going
to buy a book on introverted selling. And I'm like, how
is this possible? There are all these people that want
to create these amazing businesses that revolve around
then their family in their lives, not the other way
around. And all these people that want to succeed, maybe
they don't have a qualification and want to excel in
sales because it allows them to make this great income.
Or they want to proceed into leadership and they want to
learn how to sell themselves. How is this group that is
so just not even heard, not going to be open to hearing
about how they can sell? And for me, I just felt that
that is why this book needed to be written. And it was
proven to be so because it took off the moment it was
released. And all these other people and this is what
I've loved to say it's love to see, I should say. All of
these other people that I would call titans of industry
started outing themselves as introverted and they
started to get angry about the fact that they felt like
saying it out loud up until now was frowned upon and
they felt liberated. So I feel like it's created this

Spencer I want to support what you're saying, and I have seen
it. I don't consider myself an introvert, but I feel
like some of the best speakers that I know are the ones
that have the ability to be thoughtful and are not just
saying what they're thinking, what's coming out of their
mouth, they're actually preparing and being prepared to
get on stage in a thoughtful way. And they are fabulous
at speakers. Also, I have a client I'll share with you
that I worked on with sales, a Merrill Lynch office at a
major office, and I the managing director of the office.
I said, give me your top salespeople. I want to assess
all of them and see if there's any commonalities. And I
got their top eight salespeople and every one of them
had a different profile, but one of the number one
salespeople had low extraversion, high conformity, low
dominance. And when we dug into it, we really understood
the edge that that person has just because of the
loyalty and the following that individual created
because of how caring and detail oriented they were for
all of their clients. There's so many advantages. But a
lot of times sales managers look at a person, they're
like, you need to be fast out of the gate. You need to
be dialing and smiling and networking with everybody.
And if you're not doing that, you're not going to be
successful. And so we have this mindset, as you said, of
what we need to be doing to go out and have success, and
it's sending the wrong signal. So thank you for setting
that straight.

Matthew Well, it's my pleasure. And I will say that I think
Susan Keynes worked it amazingly well at helping people
realize it's okay to be introverted. The problem was
that everyone went into that, poor me, I'm an introvert
movement and let me survive. And you're right, so many
people are the best in the business that are
introverted. And it's not just sales, it's all of these
extroverted arenas. And it's interesting. I spoke at the
AA ISP Leadership Summit, which is the American
Association of Inside Sales Professionals, and when I
spoke at their leadership retreat, which is when I was
invited back to speak to a smaller group, still a large
group of people, but a smaller group of the best, of the
best, the highest up in all of these big tech companies.
They're high huge industries. And all the senior leaders
came to this retreat and I went, you know what? I'm just
going to do a survey of these people to find out if
they're introverted or extroverted. Now, I will say a
surprising number of them were introverted, but we
actually had to break through some barriers first
because a lot of people did not know and a lot of
responses were, oh, I used to be introverted, but don't
worry, I'm extroverted now, like it was a bad thing. And
so for me, this baffled me because why is it I mean,
this isn't new stuff. Brian Tracy says that the top 10%
of all sales performers globally have a planned
presentation. The bottom 80% just say whatever comes out
of their mouth. So I understand why introverts would be
at the top of that because they're used to winging
things and introverts being at the bottom if they're not
following a plan. But introverts are amazing at
following a plan. And if they follow a plan, they can
embrace their natural empathy, their natural active
listening, and they excel. So firstly, let's define what
introversion is, because I think that a lot of people
have it confused and they think that it's something
that's changeable. Introversion is just where you draw
your energy from. So I just got back from a speaking
tour and I know that for about 2 hours after a speaking
event that I need to have downtime and I need to block
out time and give myself permission to just put on a
hoodie and watch Netflix and recharge. I know that when
I coach that I have to allow time afterwards where I
can't do deep work. I can still do other things, but I
can't do deep work. And that's okay because for me to
operate at my best, I need to understand my personality
type. And all it is is this if I'm around people, it
doesn't take as much energy now as it used to because
there's no anxiety around it. There's no stress around
what I'm going to say because I've built systems, but it
still takes energy from me. And that's okay for an
extrovert. It charges them up. And that's why sometimes
if they're going to wait to do quiet work, then that
takes energy from them. So introversion is just where
you draw your energy from. It doesn't mean you can't do
certain things. And we've got to stop. And this is why I
founded National Introverts Week because I just got so
frustrated with people not having a dialogue that was
incorrect. And HR managers, if they're listening to
this, you've got to stop disenfranchising your
salespeople. Zig Zigler, the most well known sales
trainer in the world, was an introvert. Ivan Wise and I
just said was an introvert. You think introverts aren't
great at small talk? Oprah Winfrey is an introvert.
We've got to stop putting these people in boxes and
saying that they're introverted, therefore they can't.
Because over and over again we prove that that is not
true. What it takes is senior leadership a lot of times
taking responsibility for the for the people in their
teams, no matter what department they're in, and saying,
firstly, what is it you want to do? Because introverts
shouldn't well, they should get a choice, right? Just
because they can sell doesn't mean they want to. They
might want to be a writer, but other people are doing
data entry or writing just because they think they can't
sell. Or they may not be starting their own businesses
because they think that they can't. So as leaders, it's
our job to inspire people that they can. And as
individuals, listen to this. You need to take
responsibility for yourself. I learned to sell by
getting thrown out on Sydney Road and learning by doing,
watching YouTube videos, teaching myself. And I mean, I
didn't do it by choice. I lost my job and that was the
only job I could get. I took responsibility and I lived
in the world of what if. What if Gift of Gab wasn't a
thing, what if it was a system and then putting hard
work behind that. So we all have responsibility in this
problem. But the biggest factor is introverts believe
that it's not possible for them and leadership agrees.
And that is what we've got to break, because introverts
feel disenfranchised and the senior leadership feel like
they're doing a favor for these introverts by putting
them in jobs that don't get them to lean into what's not
natural to them. Could be amazing at it if they believed
they could leveraging a system that allows them to

Christian Okay, so, Matthew, you're speaking my language as an
introvert, I totally agree with the definition. It's
where you draw your energy from. I also agree that, as
you just rightly pointed out as you were concluding your
remarks there, that introverts are not only put in a
box, but sometimes we ourselves, we put ourselves in
these boxes that we feel comfortable in. And there are
certain things that just historically, naturally gave me
a lot of anxiety. Sales and networking, two of those
things because I know they're an energy suck for me,
right? If I'm doing sales, if I'm doing networking, that
means I'm interacting with other people. This takes
energy away from me. I know your second book is focused
on this networking element. So the second book in your
Introverts Edge series, why do you think that so many of
us introverts just shudder anytime we hear the word
networking? What's going on with us?

Matthew Because it feels like used car sales. And I think that's
the biggest hurdle for us is that see what I talk about
in the first chapter of the book, which, by the way, you
don't need to buy the book to get access to this, you
can download it at the Introverts Edge to But what I talk about is how we kind of
fell into networking. See, we all kind of lived in these
little towns, and then mass production became a thing,
and all of a sudden we had the traveling salesperson.
And the traveling salesperson, it didn't matter if they
were selling something that would change your life or
snake oil. Their job was to come in, close the deal, and
move to the next town, and they wouldn't see you again.
So it kind of gravitated to kind of that. I'm sure there
were good people, too, but that slimy salesperson that
just took advantage or were manipulative to get a deal
because they also didn't have time to come back because
they were off to the next town. So what happened is, as
we started, thanks to the industrial age, as we started
to move into big cities and these big cities meant that
we could go networking and really not see that person
again, as opposed to this community where we'd have to
see them every day or at least once a week. That kind of
salesmanship entered its way into the networking room.
And you'll see this. And I will say there's a lot of
extroverts that aren't comfortable with this either, but
a lot of introverts, I mean, they just shiver at the
idea of having to go, do you want to buy from me? No.
What about you? What about you? What about you? Not only
is it exhausting, it's not authentic. And I think that's
the biggest thing for us introverts. If we feel that we
can't be authentic, then it really does drain our
energy. And if we feel like we're outwardly selling, it
really does drain our energy. And also if we feel like
we don't have a sense of who we're going to speak to,
then also that energy doesn't lead to a positive result.
Like we might walk into a room because we feel like we
really need to get clients. And by the way, going to a
networking room looking for prospects is actually the
wrong thing to do. And we can talk about that because
prospects is actually what I call getting stuck in the
hamster wheel. What you need to be looking for are
Momentum partners and champions that further your
message out to the world. And again, if you're salesy,
they won't do that. And then champions people that
champion your work and celebrate your work to give you
work credibility, which pushes your prices up. But if
you go into a networking room thinking that it's about
sales without a plan and on top of that feeling like
your job is to lock in a deal, you're going to feel
anxiety, you're going to feel stress. And if you don't
go in plans, then of course it's not going to lead to a
positive result. You'll go in, you won't know what to
say. You walk up to the first person you speak to sorry,
the first person you see and naturally they're going to
end up selling, selling you something. And it's going to
feel like you might walk into somebody that's trying to
sell you insurance. You're like, why don't I do this
networking thing anyway? Or you go into the networking
room and you end up saying, well I'm not going to do
that. Do you want to buy from me? Do you want to buy
from me? Do you want to buy from me thing. So instead
you do what I call aimless networking. You have these
shallow conversations where you don't promote yourself.
You might even say horrible things like, oh, my day job
is like you're not that good at it. And we kind of
downplay ourselves. And that leads to these shallow
relationships where we exchange business cards. We say
we're going to connect. But truthfully, as introverts,
we don't even have enough time or enough mental energy
to catch up with a lot of the friends and family that we
have. So of course that just leads to a pile of business
cards on the desk. So we say that networking doesn't
work well, no, we're just doing it wrong these days.
Firstly, if you don't know who your niche market is and
that could be a niche employer, it could be a niche of
I'm trying to further my career in this way so I've got
to go to these types of events. And then secondly, once
you've decided that type of niche, then finding the
right events, not just going to any networking event.
And then these days, like so many places
provide. I mean, even if it's just got a Facebook page
or a LinkedIn page, there's always a photo and those
people are always tagged at the last event. So you can
connect with those people in advance, say, hey, I'm
really passionate about this and I'm on a mission to do
this. Would you suggest this networking event? So they
say, yeah, sure, definitely. Come along and the
extroverts will put you on the wing and they'll
introduce you to everyone and you got a 50 50 chance
that that person is introverted too. And if they are
introverted, they're going to see you and go, finally,
somebody I recognize, let me talk to them. So you can
make networking feel like a lot of pre planned meetings,
but then the the issue is, well, what do you say? Well,
firstly, you should be interested rather than being
interesting first to the point where they're going, oh
my gosh, Matthew, I've been speaking to you for 20
minutes. I haven't even asked you what it is that you
do. And then you get the opportunity to explain on their
invitation, which gives you a lot more time. Now, I
never commoditized myself. Now, if you're a career
professional or a business owner, you should never say,
oh, I'm in digital marketing or I'm a business coach or
I'm a ghost rider. Because the moment they hear that,
they're like, oh, I need that. How much do you cost? Or
the alternative is, oh, we have got somebody working for
us doing that. Conversation over. So I will use, and I
call this a unified message. And it doesn't matter what
industry, I've seen this work amazingly well because
it's a hook, it leads people in. People need to classify
us and put us into a box. But also, how do you possibly
identify? I mean, if I call myself a sales trainer or a
marketing coach, yes, that's a skill set that I have,
but it doesn't qualify the unique experiences that I've
had, the unique past customers, all the education that I
have, and my passion. So everybody needs to lean into
their uniqueness. Now, don't get me wrong, people think,
oh no, I've got to fit this box, so I'm employable no,
that's true. Maybe in the lower levels of career, but in
the higher levels, people want exceptional people that
have uniqueness about them. I've seen career
professionals get over six figures extra in salary just
because they've started to lean into their
individuality. So once you have that, for instance, I
say I'm the rapid growth guy. And that then leads to a
what's that? Or an open dialogue. Now, most people in
networking, it's horrible. Even the best networking
scripts sound pitchy, right? So I do this for this group
of people. Even if I-E-I help people with sales and
marketing. Sorry, I help small business owners with
sales and marketing, even if they're terrible at sales.
Now, that sounds like a pitch. It sounds contrived and
it's also hard to say it passionately without sounding
horrific. Like, oh, I help small business owners with
sales and marketing training, even if it's horrible.
Where what I say when somebody asks me, what exactly is
that? I will say, well, one of the things I love to see
more than anything in the world is an amazing
introverted service provider with enough talent, skill
and belief in themselves to go and start a business of
their own. But what I find is more often than not they
get stuck in this endless hamster wheel of struggling to
find interested people trying to set themselves apart,
trying to make the sale, feeling like people only care
about one thing price. Do you know anyone like that?
Now, of course they do, because I've gone to the right
networking event, I've done the research. I know that
they're an ideal person for me to be speaking to. And
then I'll say, Well, I'm on a mission to help these
introverts realize that they're not second class
citizens. Their path to success is just different to
that of an extrovert. And they really can have a rapid
growth business doing what they love, not by getting
better at their functional skill, but by focusing on
just three things outside the scope of their functional
skill that really will allow them to obtain rapid
growth. And then I might lead into a story. Now, the
difference is, notice I haven't told you what I do yet
because I haven't wanted to commoditize myself. I'll
share that in the story, which continues to get people
to lean in because they're interested, they've got to
solve this puzzle. But secondly, none of it was III. It
was all what I love to see in the world, what I hate to
see in the world, and the mission that I'm on, the
changes that I want to see, it's selfless instead of
self promotional. And it doesn't matter if you're a
career professional or a business owner, if you lean
into that, then all of a sudden people are like, wow.
Firstly, they've never experienced that level of energy
and passion because you can't do it in the common
networking scripts. But then on top of that, even if
they're not in your niche, they're like, how do I borrow
that energy for what I do? But more often than not,
they're thinking, hang on a second. I'd love to get them
on my podcast, I'd love to introduce them to my network,
or I believe in what this person is doing, so I want to
celebrate it. Maybe they'll endorse your books, maybe
they'll invite you to a group of high level
professionals that all introduce your work and then
endorse your work again. If you can share your mission
and passion with the world, then what happens is you end
up with people sharing your message in front of ideal
customers through podcasts, through direct
introductions, and people that celebrate it, which leads
to career trajectory skyrocketing, as well as rapid
business growth.

Spencer Love that. As you were talking about a networking event,
a couple of thoughts came to mind. First of all, if you
are an introvert and you're feeling like, well, I've got
to be extrovert, it's like signing your name with your
nondominant hand. It can come across really awkwardly at
something that is already awkward, right? And I remember
being at a networking event at the Foundation Room in
Las Vegas, which is owned by the House of Blues. It's on
the top of the hotel. It looks out over all the Las
Vegas strip. It's an amazing place. And my friend was
the sponsor, and so she had an opportunity to speak, and
everyone's like, okay, well, the sponsor talks. We
should stop talking and listen. And I remember I was
talking with this is ironic. I was actually talking
Matthew and Christian to a friend, because even though
I'm expert, I gravitate towards people that I'm
comfortable with and having a conversation, we were
talking about pulling instead of pushing, which is
exactly what you were doing. How do we pull people in
instead of pushing? Our commoditized services, right?
And just as we were doing that and just as the host
started speaking, this gentleman in a gaudy out suit
came and handed me his card. Say, if you ever need a
personal injury attorney, here's my card. And I took the
card to remember to never call that individual. It's
just exactly everything we don't want. And then at the
same event, I was looking out over the balcony, just
admiring it, and there were two ladies that were afraid
to approach. And so one of the techniques is say
something relevant, right? And what you were doing was
talking about them, not just you. This is what I love to
see in the world, people who want to start a business,
so on and so forth. What you were saying. And I said, I
promise it will be okay. I'll make sure you don't fall.
Right. So there's something relevant. And then they came
over, and we started having a conversation. Matthew that
was just real. And people started joining in the
conversation. And then, and only then, did we talk
about, well, tell me about you and what do you do? And
those were the people that I remember and that I wanted
to connect with.

Matthew It's really interesting that you say that, because I
speak at a lot of global organizations, and I talk about
storytelling, because storytelling is essential. Whether
it's leadership, whether it's you wanting to inspire
your team, whether it's to try and to attract the best
talent. It surprises me that people don't use stories in
interviews. Whether it's trying to reinspire your team
after an IPO or a bad year or some new merger, or
whether you're just trying to close more deals in
shorter sales cycles and marketing. I mean,
storytelling. Is huge there as well. But one of the
things that I do when I do this storytelling exercise is
I talk about the fact that we have to break with the
skill sets that have been serving us well up until now
to introduce a new behavior. And I talk about the fact
that while it can take work and nowhere near as much
work as you think, because I am always getting a person
up and getting them to tell a story, and I'm
transforming it right there on stage so people can see
the change within minutes, because everybody thinks
storytelling is an initiative. To introduce it across
the whole organization takes months, years, and that's
why when you're trying to steal the Titanic, you're
like, that's too hard. Let's find something else. But a
lot of times when I do this exercise, I talk about and I
put up this slide, which is I'm sure a lot of people
have seen it, but it basically says, this is your
comfort zone, and this is where the magic happens, right
outside the comfort zone. And then I say, look, do me a
favor, because I want to just prove this theory for a
second. I want you to put your hand up. Actually, you
know what? Stand up. I want you to stand up if you I
mean, they're at this global conference, right? So
people have traveled in from all over the world,
sometimes thousands of people, sometimes hundreds of
people, and I say, okay, now do me a favor. Stand up. If
you're sitting next to somebody that is in your
department or somebody that you work with or know very,
very well, and literally 99% of the room stands up, and
I'm like, Isn't that comfortable? Like, this is a
conference where we're trying to create a rapport and
relationship with other people, and we're trying to
create this teamwork that goes beyond organizational
silos or goes beyond regional areas, and yet you're
sticking to the people that you know. So I give
everybody two minutes to change shares and sit next to
someone they've never met before. And while I'd like to
think my content is amazing, people always say, matt,
thank you for getting me to do that, because I wasn't
comfortable to sit next to somebody else, but you pushed
me to do it. Why is that the case? It makes no sense to
me. I spoke for intel, and after my presentation, I was
staying at the Aloft, and I have to admit, this
introvert tends to do room service after I eat sorry,
after I speak, just because I want to have my own
downtime. But at the A loft, they don't do room service.
So I reluctantly went downstairs to get something from
the bar, and somebody walked up to me that was at the
event and just pulled me aside and said, hey, Matt, I
just wanted to let you know I really loved your
presentation. And we spoke for about 30 minutes. And he
said to me, he said, Matt, look, I'm sorry. I'm talking
your ear off now. You probably wanted to have some quiet
time. It's just when I come to conferences like this, I
don't feel like I know anybody well, so because of that,
I don't really know what to say, but because I heard
your presentation, I feel like I know who you are, so I
just feel so comfortable. I'm confused. I mean, this is
intel. This is an organization that they consider you a
newbie. If you've been there for less than 20 years,
that made no sense to me. I'm like, did you not know who
was coming? Is there not, like, a list of people? This
is the Senior Leadership Conference. How do you not know
who's coming? He said, no, there's a list. Why do you
ask? I said, Because I would be looking up all of them,
and I would be deciding who I wanted to speak with while
I was there. I would connect with them in advance. I
would notice what they're posting about, what articles
they're liking, and start to realize that what they're
interested in. So I can connect with them in advance and
say, I'm dying to speak to you. I hope we get a chance
to run into each other. Why? Because if you think that
almost half the population is introverted, go to intel.
Almost all of them are introverted. So of course, if
they don't know anyone, they're going to come and speak
to you. They're going to see your face and go, oh, my
gosh, a face that I know. And then if you know what to
talk to them about. We got Dell response at one of our
conferences because I walked up to the guy and we were
having a dialogue, and he asked me how I was going, and
I said, you know what? I'm great. I'm just really a
little bit bummed that the weather outside, it's so
cold. Because I'm a runner. I love to destress by going
for these long runs, and when it's cold, I can't go for
these runs. But I knew because I'd seen his Instagram,
which was public, so it wasn't like I was stalking him,
but I knew he was super into paleton. So I then stopped
talking as he lectured me for the next 25 minutes about
how amazing Peloton is and how it will change my life.
And at the end, I said, oh, that's interesting. I'll
have to check that out. But then he went, oh, but I've
been talking for so long. What is it that you do? And
then we got into a dialogue about what I actually wanted
to discuss. Now, what you've got to understand is,
doesn't matter whether you're going to a conference at
an organization, whether you going to an external
conference, they all have apps these days with all the
attendees, so you can go I call it profile shopping. I
go profile shopping, work out who I want to speak to. So
when I get to a conference, I've got a bunch of pre
planned meetings, and my team gets them all slotted in
my schedule, but I can't fit everybody in. So then I'm
setting up meetings for after the conference, saying,
oh, I'm sorry, I wish you got back to me sooner. I'm
fully booked. I've got too many things going on. Why
don't we catch up for a coffee later?

Spencer And you did exactly that at the December conference. I
mean, we were part of the same mastermind group, and you
were sending out emails to me, and I'm sure you did that
with others, just, hey, glad to meet you, and preparing
for the conference. So you practice what you preach.

Matthew Absolutely. And I will tell you that for me, going to a
networking event without having a preset series of
appointments makes me feel uncomfortable. And yes, my
profile is now where it is. But it wasn't always that
way, right when I got to America, I mean, I didn't know
anybody outside my wife who's far more introverted than
I am. And because of that, she didn't want to go out and
about. And so I had to start totally fresh. Less than a
year later, I was invited to events as one of the most
connected people in the city. But why was that? It was
because I went to an event at the Capital Factory. I
connected with a bunch of people beforehand. They
checked out my profile. One of them was a guy called Tom
Singer. And Tom Singer pulled me aside and said, I don't
want to catch up with you at the networking event.
There's going to be too many people talking. Let's catch
up with the coffee first. So then when I got to the
event, I was having a dialogue with someone else, and
Tom Singer walked up and said, oh, Matthews, terrific.
You've got to get him to speak at your event. I'd have
to say a thing. Next thing I know, I'm speaking in front
of 200 people, and my brand exploded. And that was just
one example, but if I had gone there to go.

Spencer Tom, if you're listening.

Matthew Tom I mean, Tom is a great friend of mine. I actually
talk about him in my networking book because it's funny
the mistakes we make when we try new things. So my
number one rule in networking and sales, in everything
that I do, is it's not about you. Right? If you can make
it about someone else, then you don't feel
uncomfortable. And Tom tom pulled me aside after he saw
one of my first presentations, and he said, matt, you
got something that you know I'll never have, which is
the fact that you've built, you know, five multimillion
dollar success stories. The credibility that you bring,
you know, I'll never have. But here's the problem. I
completely started to tune out about 15 minutes in,
because all you did was talk about your own personal
story. I heard I like 46 times before I heard me. He
said, if you were to grab your eye story and bring it to
two thirds of the way into your presentation, and then
introduce other people's stories first, and then bring
yourself down a peg through your personal story, and
then bring people back up with another story, people
will resonate with it a lot more. And he was right. I
mean, people resonated. I got clients out of space
speaking. I got paid to speak. I was doing well, but I
wasn't exceptional as a speaker, and I couldn't get
people to connect as well as I would like. And I was
doing that because I was an introvert. And I'm like,
well, who am I to be standing in front of all these
people telling them what I do? Yet this person that I
met out of nowhere gives me this piece of advice that I
was open to, and I then made a shift, and that exploded
my speaking career. So it's funny how my number one rule
is it's not about you. You break that rule without
planning and preparation and without studying the art of
it. So for introverts, I want you to know that you might
be an amazing leader, but you may not be great at sales.
If you wing it, you'll make mistakes if you are great at
sales, but you're not great at leadership. I mean, my
story was I fell into sales because I lost my job just
before Christmas. I mean, I had a reading speed of a 6th
grader. I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life.
I had a gap year, and I took a safe job doing data
entry. And the next thing I know, three weeks in is
shutting down the office. I'm out of work. I teach
myself how to sell watching YouTube videos. So
literally, 8 hours a day out in the field, 8 hours at
home, practicing every day, weekends, 16 hours a day,
practicing every day. I mean, it was 93 doors before my
first sale, by the way. I mean, I got sworn at. I got
told to get a real job. It was horrible. The next day,
though, after a little practice, it was about 83, then
it was 61, then it was 21, then it was twelve, then it
was down to three, six weeks in. My manager pulls me
aside and he said that we're kind of blown away by this,
but you're the number one salesperson in the company.
And I mean, this was the largest sales and marketing
company in the southern hemisphere, and they were blown
away because I was the quiet guy that didn't talk to
anyone. I handed my paperwork in downstairs. I came
upstairs and heard all the voicestress, people talking
about how they locked in that deal or how the market is
getting harder. So they said, clearly, you're amazing at
sales, you'd make an amazing manager. I don't know why
people think that. It's the most ridiculous thing in the
world and now you'll laugh at this, but when I lost my
job, I pulled out the classifiers and there were only
three jobs listed because I lost my job just before
Christmas. And Australia, we take holidays from the 20
December to the 15th or 20 January, so no one's hiring.
It's summer and Christmas at the same time. These three
jobs were all commission only sales, which for this
introverted person that was scared to talk to his own
friends, let alone anyone else, super uncomfortable. But
I applied for all three jobs and I got all three
interviews and then I got three job offers. And I'm
like, Maybe they see something in me that I don't see in
myself. But when I got there, they were like, Matt, we
just hire everyone. We've got this saying, we throw mud
up against the wall, we see what sticks. Fun saying
until you're the mud. So when I got offered this
management job, I'm like, I've got no idea how to
manage. They're like, no worries, we just roam it up
against the wall. Somebody will stick. All 20 people in
my training group quit within the space of 24 hours. But
I went back to YouTube. Surprising how many people buy
programs before they check out YouTube. It's why I put
so much in there, to repay the favor. But I went back to
YouTube and I learned to manage. And what I realized is
that my lack of confidence was making me a bad manager.
My lack of structure, which is what I learned. I learned
to structure a sale and not make it about me. But my
lack of structure meant that my lack of confidence was
showing and I was making it more about me, which led
people to not want to follow me. And my lack of
confidence, it's funny how many times you go into
something new and you fail again and you fail again.
Like for me, when I went into speaking, tom Singer had
to pull me aside and say, hey, Matt, you're making me
about you. And it was my lack of confidence that was
causing that same problem. And what was really
interesting is the moment someone mentioned it, I went,
Idiot, I've done it again. And then I changed it and it
was so obvious, yet it didn't occur to me. And that's
why sometimes these peer groups like you were talking
about are so important and sometimes having and I'm a
big believer in organizations, and if you're a CEO or a
HR manager and you're listening to this and you do not
have a group dedicated to inspiring introverts to be
successful. Firstly, by the way, help them realize they
are introverted and don't do it to discriminate against
them the number of people that do employment tests to
work out who their introverts are so they never promote
them again. Firstly, you have to work out who they are
by making them realize it's a good thing. So it's not a
good or a bad thing, it's just a personality type. And
secondly, the introverts and extroverts have skills
gaps, not barriers that they can't cross, right?
Extroverts can learn to listen and empathize. Introverts
can learn how to sell a network. The problem is that and
the reason why I'm so much more on the introverted side
is HR managers know that about the introverts. They
believe that introverts can't, and that's what we've got
to break.

Spencer That is a fallacy, 100% fallacy.

Matthew Oh, it drives me nuts that HR managers do this, but if
you don't, firstly help people realize that it's a
personality type, not a skills gap, and educate your
leaders not to discriminate. And then get people to self
identify and then create a group because there's always
an amazing introverted salesperson that will inspire
your entire sales team. People hire me because no one's
going to listen to a sales trainer or the introverts
aren't, especially in tech industries, an extrovert
telling them it's easy, you just do this, they won't
listen. They'll listen to me because I'm introverted.
Yet half the people from stage that are telling you it's
easy, do this, are introverted, they just don't say it.
And then worse, there's somebody in their organization
that's killing it in sales, in leadership, in
networking. But because they're scared to mention it,
because they don't want to kill their career, they're
not inspiring other people that they can too.

Spencer I'm actually teaching my HR because I do a lot of
behavioral assessments and hiring to teach them to you
cannot use this to discriminate. You have to understand
what the strengths are and what they're bringing, and
they're just different. So I know I've been
monopolizing. Christian, you got questions?

Christian Well, yeah. I actually want to come back to something
Spencer has mentioned to me before. I've heard him talk
about this before, which is if you're a golfer, you need
to learn to be competent with all of the clubs in your
bag. You can't just be the guy that hits the driver all
the time. And that applies, I think, for introverts, but
also introverts as well. And continuing this discussion.
As an introvert myself, there may be certain clubs that
I'm reticent to use because I'm weak with them. I'm
really impressed with your drive and determination to
skill yourself up in areas that were weak, and I wonder
where that's coming from, because a lot of us
introverts, we just say we will just accept the fact
we'll just roll over because it's easy. I just roll over
and say, well, I am the way that I am and life is the
way that it is, and that's that. But you somehow plowed
through that and so I'm curious, in your own personal
journey, what did you find yourself doing that the rest
of us could apply? What would you recommend that us
introverts do differently to break through some of these
barriers, whether they're imposed by others or self

Matthew So that's a great question. So there are a couple of
things that you highlighted there. So firstly, you
talked about all the different drivers and for a lot of
leaders listening, there might be extroverts that are
listening and they're like, well, I can't get my
introverted teammates to speak up. They always have such
great ideas, but in the meetings they never bring it up.
As a matter of fact, they always bring up what we talked
about in the meeting yesterday and now they're telling
me what we should do. But I've already implemented the
agreement that we had in the meeting and now I know it's
always a lesser idea. So why doesn't Sarah or Johnny
speak up in the meeting? And the answer is because you
didn't tell them what the agenda was and you didn't say
that you were going to be asking an open question. So if
you did a little planning and preparation for your
meeting and sent it out in advance and say, hey, Sarah
and Johnny, I'm hoping you can really add a little bit
of energy to this or I'm going to be asking an open
question, then Sarah and Johnny can reflect and then
provide an answer. And what's really interesting is we
were talking about the CSP conference that we all
attended and there was one piece of one question where I
had a lot to add. And that's why we were talking about
the fact that everyone else needs a turn. And I'm like,
this is where I've got domain expertise. But then the
next question that came up, I didn't have domain
expertise and everyone was contributing and I was quiet
and I got asked afterwards, I hope that we didn't offend
you by telling you that other people needed to speak in
that part. And I said, no, I just had nothing to add. I
don't know why people constantly talk when they've got
nothing to add or they can see somebody else has a much
higher level of domain expertise here I had nothing to
add or nothing that was a higher level ad than what
somebody else in the room could have offered. So it is
so important to realize that introverts and extroverts
have to lean into their strengths. And other people
around need to understand that when somebody's not
talking, it may be because they've got nothing to say,
not that they're upset, but also they may have nothing
to say because you didn't do planning beforehand to let
them know that this topic was coming up. They may have
had something to do to say and they may have done a ton
of research to add a huge amount of value to that
conversation. But they didn't because you didn't give
them the ability to really shine in the way that they
are born to. Now let's talk about the different clubs,
because you're right, I am constantly pushing myself
into different spheres. And the reason for that is
because nothing ever came easy for me. I mean, yeah, I
had a reading speed of a 6th grader in high school. I
was super introverted. I didn't know what I wanted to do
with my life. In a lot of my presentations, I put up
this horrible photo of me with bad acne and I talk about
my color lenses, which I got got diagnosed with Erlin
syndrome in later high school, which miraculously meant
I could learn to read, but it didn't mean I could read
like everyone else. I could start the process of
learning to read. So basically, here I am, feeling like
the slow kid my whole life. Acne, braces, funny colored
lenses. I didn't exactly have a lot of confidence. But
also the world didn't work for me the way that it worked
for everybody else. So because of that, I always had to
push myself out of my comfort zone and say, this is the
way it works for everyone else. That's not going to work
for me. I have to find my own way. And what I've
realized is that the things, the clubs that I don't know
how to use, what I find is I'm actually better at using
those clubs than some of the clubs that I'm given
naturally. But what pushes us, I mean, let's face it, we
kind of live in this world, and I'm assuming there's a
very diverse audience here, but if you're in a first
world country, life's not that tough. We've got running
water, we've got electricity, we've got our technology,
which is definitely an enabler for some of us. It's a
total distraction for others. But life is not that hard.
A lot of us don't struggle for food to eat. And we might
be in a career where we don't feel like we're tapping
into the top end of the Maslow hierarchy of needs, but
we're definitely tapping into the bottom ones, which
means we're just not that motivated. The thing that I
have found is I only feel that I only enjoy learning new
skills because I take it as something exciting, as a
challenge. I'm looking to experiment. If I see it as
something that I'm not good at and that I'm going to
find it difficult, then I'm not going to do those
skills. So I have to live in this. Henry Ford says it
best if you think you can or if you think you can't.
You're right. I lead into I know that I can not think I
can, I know that I can. In which case I'm then looking
for the competencies. I don't have this gift of gab
barrier now, I think, and I talk about storytelling a
lot and I talk about the science behind why it's so
powerful and the fact that it activates the reticular
activating system of our brain, which creates artificial
rapport, which we introverts are able to turn into real
rapport, which is great. I talk about the fact that
people remember up to 22 times more information when
embedded into a story. So it's amazing for a leadership
tool, for a recruitment tool, for a sales tool. But
here's the one that really gets me. When you tell a
story, it short circuits the logical mind. It speaks
directly to the emotional mind. So if you're in sales,
take storytelling with a duty of care. Don't sell a
product you don't believe in or if it doesn't deliver
great results. But what happens is I also warn people
about the fact that when you tell a story, it short
circuits logical mind and it speaks directly to the
emotional mind, which if you tell yourself stories, it
does that too. It's dangerous. When you talk about
negative self talk, right? We tell ourselves 1600 to
60,000 things a day. Now, I know that sounds hard to
believe, but we do most of that on an unconscious level,
right? We can talk to ourselves at the speed of a
presidential address, a 60 minutes presidential address
in around a minute. Think about if you're telling
yourself negative stories and negative things, how
detrimental that is to your belief and your motivation.
Like if you know you're not going to place or even
finish a marathon, how much effort are you going to put
into changing it? If you think you're going to win the
marathon, do you think that you're going to enjoy the
training? Of course you are. So what we have to do is we
have to stop telling ourselves these things. I mean,
people tell themselves these why I can't stories over
and over again before they've even validated whether
they're true. And because you're telling them it is a
story, your logical brain doesn't even kick in. Your
emotional brain knows it to be true and it doesn't
validate it. So when you see yourself or hear yourself
telling yourself these things, know that even if you're
only consciously aware of some of them, that you're
unconsciously telling yourself so much more. And it's
catastrophic to your ability to ascend to a higher
income and a higher level of happiness. Because what
happens? We tell ourselves we're not great at networking
but then we go and then we beat ourselves up later as
opposed to seeing it as a system, leaning into that
system and then using our reflective nature to instead
of beating us up, look for one continuous improvement
opportunity over and over again. So my suggestion is
this most people assume that they can't and they tell
themselves a story before that they even try. So when I
get asked like, why is it that I didn't just quit my
job, quit that door to door job, why didn't I just
accept like everybody else did? It's simple. I took
responsibility for my own situation. The world hadn't
worked for me in any way, shape or form. So I had an
edge over everyone that is listening that had it come
easy to them because then the first time you hit
hardship, you just got oh, too hard, let's run away.
Don't do that. Take responsibility. Live in what if
thinking and then do the work. And then you'll find that
you'll actually be better. Like I say, introverts
outsell extroverts for this main reason. It's not that
extroverts can't learn sales systems. And a lot of
extroverts actually leverage my networking system
because I feel uncomfortable promoting themselves when
they move into their own businesses. Here's the problem
though. Extroverts love winging things, so they're more
likely to go back to winging things and they have to be
willing to take a small step back to catapult forward.
We introverts, we're terrible at sales, we're terrible
at networking. But when leveraging a system, we have a
superpower and we hold onto it for dear life. So we fly
forward. It's because we're using a system and
mythology, a methodology. But we have to be willing to a
believe that we can be willing to put good and hard work
behind it and be willing to go into it with a mindset of
experimentation. And we can do that if we believe that
we can. But if we feel like we're not even going to be
able to get finish the marathon, why would we try? And
life's comfortable, isn't it?

Spencer So great. So many great thoughts. I just want to
emphasize one thing that you said and all of us can fall
victim to this. Well, I'm not good at names, especially
when it comes to, you know, networking. Right. Well, as
soon as you say that the I can't that you were talking
about, you've given yourself an excuse to give up, to
not deal with the challenge or the uncomfortable, the
awkwardness that you were talking about to run away.
Well, I'm an introvert or I'm an extrovert. This is just
the way I am. And so you are making an excuse for
staying where you are at and not getting uncomfortable,
where the magic is. And so when you say those types of
things, it is very disempowering. So then you brought in
so what if, what if I could remember names? What would I
be doing differently? Well, how can I do that? Then you
start to be thinking productively. So asking those types
of questions is so, so powerful. Christian, I know we're
running short on on time. Christian, you've got more
thoughts? We wrap up.

Christian We're up against it. We can have this conversation. For
hours. I've been taking notes while the camera has been
spotlighted on you. I've learned a lot today here. I'm
sure that that is just the tip of the iceberg for
everything that people could. Learn from you, Matthew,
and we're honored to have you join our show today. I'm
so grateful that you came and have shared so much
knowledge with us in such a short period of time. If
people want to learn more about the work that you're
doing to help us introverts and how we can be helped by
you, and to also help those who are in leadership
positions who may need to rethink their policies and
their processes about how to deal with us. Really
interesting, amazing people. What's the best way for
people to reach out and get in touch with you?

Matthew Yeah, I appreciate that. Now I will say one piece of
final advice is that if you're an introvert watching
this or a leader that's looking to do things differently
in your organization, I really recommend you finding one
mountain to charge up first. Right. So I see a lot of
people and actually it's what I call busy
procrastination. We say we're going to learn how to sell
as an introvert network, as an introvert leaders, an
introvert. We're trying to do it all. We'll consume all
these books and then we'll do nothing because it's
overwhelming. So what I've been able to do and my team
calls this going down the rabbit hole, I go dark for
like a day or two because I read as much as I can on the
topic, but then I make it decision and I take action.
And a lot of people, what they do is they consume
information on lots of topics and then they take no
action. The other thing I call busy procrastination is
where they say, oh, I'm going to learn sales. So I'll
read this book and then this book and then this book and
then I'll pull it all together and I'll be the best in
the world. Well, no, just find a person that you
resonate with, follow their system and get the basic
elements together and that'll put you miles ahead. Worry
about the bells and whistles later. Sales, networking,
public speaking, it's not like mixed martial arts. You
don't get better by learning all the skills at once.
Right. What you want to be doing is focusing on the
basics and really making sure that you get out of busy
procrastination, right. Consumer as much information as
you need to start taking action and start to see and
reflect on what's happening so that you can then improve
the process but get the vehicle if you like. If we're
thinking from a manufacturing mindset, get the car off
the line and then start. We talked about Henry Ford
before, right? He added saying if you can have any color
car you want as long as it's black, because he didn't
want to focus on that. He wanted to focus on mass
production first. And that's the mindset you need to
take into all of this. So where can you find out more
about me and how can you learn more about the topic.
Well, the Introverts Edge podcast is a great way to
start. There's a lot of content. You have some amazing
senior leaders in there talking about their introverted
natures and how they've been able to excel as leaders
and what they've done in their organizations to help
their staff do the same. So that's a great opportunity
for people. Obviously, my publisher hates me when I say
this, but you do not need to buy my books. If you want
to look at how you can succeed in sales, go to the Download the first chapter. I'll
show you that you can excel as an introverted sales
professional or a business owner. And I even map out the
seven steps. If you do nothing more than look at what
you currently say and fit it in there, you'll quickly
realize some things don't fit. Throw it out. You
shouldn't be saying it to customers. You'll realize
there's some things out of order, which is probably why
you end up talking about price real soon, or why the
conversations get really tense really quickly. And then
you'll realize there's some gaping holes usually around
telling great stories, asking great questions, the right
questions. Fix those. You'll double your sales in the
next 60 days. So you can get that at the Introverts
Edge. And I do the same thing for networking at the
Introverts Edge. Introverts Edge to But I
have a ton of content on LinkedIn, a ton of content on
YouTube. I put a ton of free stuff out there. Just start
the journey, and you'll find you get miles in front, as
long as you believe that you can.

Christian Oh, I'm going to hop over to the Introverse Edge right
after this thing is done. So I'm super excited about
this. Spencer, you do amazing work with organizations
across the globe, helping them develop high performing
teams. What's the best way for them to reach out and
contact you?

Spencer Just reach out to me on LinkedIn. Christian, thank you
so much. And I'll be getting the Introverts Edge, so
your publisher will be at least got one more book sold,
75,001. Christian yeah. And you know, Matthew, you and I
had time to meet together, and I'm sorry we didn't have
more time to introduce my amazing co host. He is such a
joy to work with. He is everything that I'm not, and I
admire him so much, and he does so much, works with
major organizations all around the globe and helping
them. He's working right now on the Salt Lake Olympic
bid for the Winter Olympics here in Salt Lake City,
which looks like will happen, but his expertise is
sought after by major organizations. So how can people
find you? Christian hey.

Christian Head on to LinkedIn. Thank you for the very kind words
there, Spencer. Just look for Christian Napier on
LinkedIn. You'll find me there and happy to connect with
anyone. Listeners, viewers, thank you so much for
joining us today. Please, like I can subscribe to our
podcast. We'll catch you again soon.
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The Introvert's Edge
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