In January 2013, Susan Cain published a book that would spark a global conversation and change the world.
Her stunning, international bestseller, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, gave voice to nearly a third of the human race, those who’d often walked through life believing that their quiet nature, their love of smaller groups, individual conversations and solitude was something “to be fixed.” Something that would hold them back in life, keep them from the good jobs and from rising to embrace their potential.
Quiet was shock to the system. It validated this often-maligned social orientation with a fierce attention to science and revealed the stunning creative and social power of introverts. Cain let the quieter set, of which I am a member, know we’re okay, better than okay, we are blessed.
She also pulled back the curtain on how society and the corporate world build structure and culture that supports and rewards extroversion, while downplaying the value of introverts and stifling their ability to do the often game-changing work needed most.
The book changed Susan’s world nearly overnight. Thousands of letters poured in, many from parents who finally understood themselves and their kids, and from the kids who, many for the first time ever, felt understood and able to help their parents see and accept them for who they were.
The response to the book also thrust Susan into the spotlight. It changed her life in ways she never imagined. And it cultivated an immense sense of responsibility to help on an entirely different level. One that led to the June 2015 launch of Quiet Revolution, a new venture on a quest to built educational programs and community for parents and kids, and also corporate training designed to allow organizations to both provide a better home for introverts, while also allowing their creative and leadership abilities to flourish.
This week’s conversation with Susan features not only what her book and ideas have done to the lives of millions, but also what the book has done to and for her. How it’s changed her, thrust this previously introverted, solitude-loving writer onto the global stage and how she has found a new normal in her role as a leader and a public introvert.
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