|Final Exam Review: Writing from Sources (PART III) English 10
After reading the 3 sources on introverts and extroverts, create a thesis statement and topic sentences for each body paragraph (minimum 3 BODY PARAGRAPHS) that would make up an essay for this prompt.
English 10 Final Exam Practice – Part III
Writing from Sources
Closely read each of the texts provided and write an evidence-based essay on the topic below
Topic: Are introverts better suited for leadership positions than extroverts are?
Your Task: Carefully read each of the three texts provided. Then, using evidence from all three texts, write a well-developed essay, arguing whether introverts more suited for leadership positions than extroverts. Clearly establish your claim, distinguish your claim from alternate or opposing claims (i.e. acknowledge the other side of the argument), and use specific and relevant evidence from all three of the texts to develop your argument.
Do not simply summarize each text.
Be sure to:
Establish your claim regarding whether introverts are more suited for leadership positions.
Distinguish your claim from alternate or opposing claims (acknowledge the other side of the argument)
Use specific, relevant, and sufficient evidence from all three of the texts to develop your argument
Introverts: The common modern perception is that introverts tend to be more reserved and less outspoken in groups. They often take pleasure in solitary activities such as reading, writing, using computers, hiking and fishing. The archetypal artist, writer, sculptor, engineer, composer and inventor are all highly introverted. An introvert is likely to enjoy time spent alone and find less reward in time spent with large groups of people, though he or she may enjoy interactions with close friends.
Extroverts: Extroverts tend to enjoy human interactions and to be enthusiastic, talkative, assertive, and gregarious. Extroverts are energized and thrive off of being around other people. They take pleasure in activities that involve large social gatherings, such as parties, community activities, public demonstrations, and business or political groups. An extroverted person is likely to enjoy time spent with people and find less reward in time spent alone. They tend to be energized when around other people, and they are more prone to boredom when they are by themselves.
Reddy, Sumathi. “How an Introvert Can Be Happier: Act Like an Extrovert.” The Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company, Inc., 23 July 2013. Web. 21 April 2014.
Sumathi Reddy, a Wall Street Journal reporter, writes a weekly consumer health column, called "Your Health," which runs every Tuesday in the Personal Journal section.
Extroverts, those outgoing, gregarious types who wear their personalities on their sleeve, are generally happier, studies show. Some research also has found that introverts, who are more withdrawn in nature, will feel a greater sense of happiness if they act extroverted.
Experts aren't entirely sure why behaving like an extrovert makes people feel better. One theory is that being talkative and engaging influences how people respond to you, especially if that response is positive. Others speculate that people get more satisfaction when they express their core self and opinions. Another possibility: Happiness might come simply from having successfully completed a goal, such as giving a speech.
"If you're introverted and act extroverted, you will be happier. It doesn't matter who you are, it's all about what you do," said William Fleeson, a psychology professor at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C.
Other studies have shown that extroverts are more motivated than introverts. Researchers believe this is due in part to extroverts' greater sensitivity to dopamine, a neurotransmitter that plays a big role in behavior driven by rewards.
Clark Powell considers himself an introvert, but his job as vice president of a media relations and multimedia production firm means he often must act out of character. "My job requires me to be on TV…and to do media training and presentations in front of large groups of people, as painful as that can be sometimes," said the 46-year-old in Columbia, Ohio. Though he may dread making a presentation, he says he is exhilarated afterward. "I do feel a sense of relief and elation, but I don't know if that's because of the experience or because the experience is over," he said.
Mr. Powell disagrees with research findings that extroverts are happier and more motivated. While extroverts might derive happiness through feedback from others, Mr. Powell says his sources of pleasure include learning new things and reading a good book. "I may not share my happiness as willingly as other people…but I consider myself just as happy and I'm extremely motivated to learn and grow as an individual."
Whether a person is an extrovert or introvert is one of the big five traits commonly used by psychologists to classify personalities. (The others are openness to experience, conscientiousness, agreeableness and neuroticism.) Researchers say people generally fall somewhere in the middle, with attributes of both types. Extroverts tend to thrive off of interaction with other people. Introverts are typically more reserved, but not necessarily shy. They prefer solitary behavior or engaging in small groups.
Researchers say genetics may play a large role in whether we are more extroverted or introverted. Social experiences, especially those outside of the family environment, are also important, particularly as a child and young adult when the connectivity between neurons is being established.
Dr. Fleeson, of Wake Forest University, reported in a 2012 article in the Journal of Personality the results of an experiment that found introverts experience greater levels of happiness when they act more extroverted. In the weeklong study, researchers followed 85 people who recorded on Palm Pilots how extroverted they were acting and how happy they were feeling. Other studies of introvert behavior have reached similar conclusions.
So why don't introverts act like extroverts more often? John Zelenski, a psychologist at Carleton University in Ottawa, and fellow researchers probed that question in an April article in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
A series of studies, which included more than 600 college students, found that introverts misjudge how they would feel after acting extroverted. They often predicted feelings of anxiety and embarrassment, which never transpired.
"Introverts kind of underestimate how much fun it will be to act extroverted," said Dr. Zelenski. "You don't think you want to go to a party and then go and have a great time." Dr. Zelenski and other researchers also considered whether people acting in a way that goes against their natural disposition might wear themselves out. In two studies, a total of about 150 college students were instructed to behave in an extroverted or introverted manner during a group activity. Questionnaires and cognitive tests measured how much mental energy was depleted.
"We didn't find a lot of evidence for…the idea that acting like an extrovert would wear out introverts," said Dr. Zelenski. However, he said: "We found acting like an introvert tended to wear out extroverts," who performed worse on cognitive tests.
Still, Brian Little a psychology professor at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom, believes that acting out of character can take a physiological toll on the nervous and immune systems. Dr. Little says he's an introvert who often has to engage in extroverted behavior, such as making speeches, in order to advance his work. Afterward, Dr. Little says he often needs to emotionally recharge.
While extroverts might benefit from interacting with others during a break at a conference, Dr. Little prefers to go for walk if he has time. If not, he might hide in the restroom. "As an introvert acting as an extrovert I need to escape from the vicissitudes of overstimulating colleagues," he said.
Luke Smillie, a senior lecturer of psychology at the University of Melbourne in Australia, notes that most studies of introverts and extroverts take place in the U.S. and other western countries where extroversion is often perceived to be more valuable. "The question is, would you observe the same effects in cultures that didn't have this sort of value placed on being outgoing and assertive and so forth?" he said.
"We live in a culture that very much subscribes to the extrovert ideal of being bold and assertive," said Susan Cain, a former corporate lawyer who wrote a book last year called Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, which argues that introverts are unfairly maligned. Rather than trying to get introverts to act more extroverted, she argues that society should be drawing on their natural strengths, which can include being a good listener and working creatively.
Excerpted from: Cain, Susan. “Shyness: Evolutionary Tactic?” The New York Times Sunday Review. The New York Times Company, 25 July 2011. Web. 21 April 2014.
A recent book by a former lawyer, Susan Cain, explores the two personality types – introverts and extroverts. The book is titled Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking. This article was written prior to its publication.
. . . shyness and introversion share an undervalued status in a world that prizes extroversion. Children’s classroom desks are now often arranged in pods, because group participation supposedly leads to better learning; in one school I visited, a sign announcing “Rules for Group Work” included, “You can’t ask a teacher for help unless everyone in your group has the same question.” Many adults work for organizations that now assign work in teams, in offices without walls, for supervisors who value “people skills” above all. As a society, we prefer action to contemplation, risk-taking to heed-taking, certainty to doubt. Studies show that we rank fast and frequent talkers as more competent, likable and even smarter than slow ones. As the psychologists William Hart and Dolores Albarracin point out, phrases like “get active,” “get moving,” “do something” and similar calls to action surface repeatedly in recent books.
Yet shy and introverted people have been part of our species for a very long time, often in leadership positions. We find them in the Bible (“Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh?" asked Moses, whom the Book of Numbers describes as “very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.”) We find them in recent history, in figures like Charles Darwin, Marcel Proust and Albert Einstein, and, in contemporary times: think of Google’s Larry Page, or Harry Potter’s creator, J. K. Rowling.
In the science journalist Winifred Gallagher’s words: “The glory of the disposition that stops to consider stimuli rather than rushing to engage with them is its long association with intellectual and artistic achievement. Neither E=mc2 nor ‘Paradise Lost’ was dashed off by a party animal.”
We even find “introverts” in the animal kingdom, where 15 percent to 20 percent of many species are watchful, slow-to-warm-up types who stick to the sidelines (sometimes called “sitters”) while the other 80 percent are “rovers” who sally forth without paying much attention to their surroundings. Sitters and rovers favor different survival strategies, which could be summed up as the sitter’s “Look before you leap” versus the rover’s inclination to “Just do it!” Each strategy reaps different rewards.
In an illustrative experiment, David Sloan Wilson, a Binghamton evolutionary biologist, dropped metal traps into a pond of pumpkinseed sunfish. The “rover” fish couldn’t help but investigate — and were immediately caught. But the “sitter” fish stayed back, making it impossible for Professor Wilson to capture them. Had Professor Wilson’s traps posed a real threat, only the sitters would have survived. But had the sitters taken Zoloft and become more like bold rovers, the entire family of pumpkinseed sunfish would have been wiped out. “Anxiety” about the trap saved the fishes’ lives.
Next, Professor Wilson used fishing nets to catch both types of fish; when he carried them back to his lab, he noted that the rovers quickly acclimated to their new environment and started eating a full five days earlier than their sitter brethren. In this situation, the rovers were the likely survivors. “There is no single best ... [animal] personality,” Professor Wilson concludes in his book, “Evolution for Everyone,” “but rather a diversity of personalities maintained by natural selection.”
The same might be said of humans, 15 percent to 20 percent of whom are also born with sitter-like temperaments that predispose them to shyness and introversion. (The overall incidence of shyness and introversion is higher — 40 percent of the population for shyness, according to the psychology professor Jonathan Cheek, and 50 percent for introversion. Conversely, some born sitters never become shy or introverted at all.)
Once you know about sitters and rovers, you see them everywhere, especially among young children. Drop in on your local Mommy and Me music class: there are the sitters, intently watching the action from their mothers’ laps, while the rovers march around the room banging their drums and shaking their maracas.
Relaxed and exploratory, the rovers have fun, make friends and will take risks, both rewarding and dangerous ones, as they grow. According to Daniel Nettle, a Newcastle University evolutionary psychologist, extroverts are more likely than introverts to be hospitalized as a result of an injury, have affairs (men) and change relationships (women). One study of bus drivers even found that accidents are more likely to occur when extroverts are at the wheel.
In contrast, sitter children are careful and astute, and tend to learn by observing instead of by acting. They notice scary things more than other children do, but they also notice more things in general. Studies dating all the way back to the 1960’s by the psychologists Jerome Kagan and Ellen Siegelman found that cautious, solitary children playing matching games spent more time considering all the alternatives than impulsive children did, actually using more eye movements to make decisions. Recent studies by a group of scientists at Stony Brook University and at Chinese universities using functional M.R.I. technology echoed this research, finding that adults with sitter-like temperaments looked longer at pairs of photos with subtle differences and showed more activity in brain regions that make associations between the photos and other stored information in the brain.
Once they reach school age, many sitter children use such traits to great effect. Introverts, who tend to digest information thoroughly, stay on task, and work accurately, earn disproportionate numbers of National Merit Scholarship finalist positions and Phi Beta Kappa keys, according to the Center for Applications of Psychological Type, a research arm for the Myers-Briggs personality type indicator — even though their I.Q. scores are no higher than those of extroverts. Another study, by the psychologists Eric Rolfhus and Philip Ackerman, tested 141 college students’ knowledge of 20 different subjects, from art to astronomy to statistics, and found that the introverts knew more than the extroverts about 19 subjects — presumably, the researchers concluded, because the more time people spend socializing, the less time they have for learning.
THE psychologist Gregory Feist found that many of the most creative people in a range of fields are introverts who are comfortable working in solitary conditions in which they can focus attention inward. Steve Wozniak, the engineer who founded Apple with Steve Jobs, is a prime example: Mr. Wozniak describes his creative process as an exercise in solitude. “Most inventors and engineers I’ve met are like me,” he writes in “iWoz,” his autobiography. “They’re shy and they live in their heads. They’re almost like artists. In fact, the very best of them are artists. And artists work best alone ... Not on a committee. Not on a team.”
Sitters’ temperaments also confer more subtle advantages. Anxiety, it seems, can serve an important social purpose; for example, it plays a key role in the development of some children’s consciences. When caregivers rebuke them for acting up, they become anxious, and since anxiety is unpleasant, they tend to develop pro-social behaviors. Shy children are often easier to socialize and more conscientious, according to the developmental psychologist Grazyna Kochanska. By 6 they’re less likely than their peers to cheat or break rules, even when they think they can’t be caught, according to one study. By 7 they’re more likely to be described by their parents as having high levels of moral traits such as empathy.
When I shared this information with the mother of a “sitter” daughter, her reaction was mixed. “That is all very nice,” she said, “but how will it help her in the tough real world?” But sensitivity, if it is not excessive and is properly nurtured, can be a catalyst for empathy and even leadership. Eleanor Roosevelt, for example, was a courageous leader who was very likely a sitter. Painfully shy and serious as a child, she grew up to be a woman who could not look away from other people’s suffering — and who urged her husband, the constitutionally buoyant F.D.R., to do the same; the man who had nothing to fear but fear itself relied, paradoxically, on a woman deeply acquainted with it.
Another advantage sitters bring to leadership is a willingness to listen to and implement other people’s ideas. A groundbreaking study led by the Wharton management professor Adam Grant, to be published this month in The Academy of Management Journal, found that introverts outperform extroverts when leading teams of proactive workers — the kinds of employees who take initiative and are disposed to dream up better ways of doing things. Professor Grant notes that business self-help guides often suggest that introverted leaders practice their communication skills and smile more. But, he told me, it may be extrovert leaders who need to change, to listen more and say less. . .
Northhouse, Peter G. “Trait Approach.” Leadership: Theory and Practice. 6th Edition. Los Angeles: Sage Publications, 2013. Print.
Peter Northouse is a Professor Emeritus of Communication in the School of Communication at Western Michigan University. This is an excerpt from his textbook Leadership.
Although the research on traits spanned the entire 20th century, a good overview of this approach is found in two surveys completed by R.M. Stogdill. In his first survey, Stogdill analyzed and synthesized more than 124 trait studies conducted between 1904 and 1947. In his second study, he analyzed another 163 studies completed between 1948 and 1970. By taking a closer look at each of these reviews, we can obtain a clearer picture of how individuals’ traits contribute to the leadership process.
Stogdill’s first survey identified a group of important leadership traits that were related to how individuals in various groups became leaders. His results showed that the average individual in the leadership role is different from an average group member with regard to the following eight traits: intelligence, alertness, insight, responsibility, initiative, persistence, self-confidence, and sociability.
The findings of Stogdill’s first survey also indicated that an individual does not become a leader solely because that individual possesses certain traits. Rather, the traits that leaders possess must be relevant to situations in which the leader is functioning. As stated earlier, leaders in one situation may not necessarily be leaders in another situation. Findings showed that leadership was not a passive state but resulted from a working relationship between the leader and other group members. This research marked the beginning of a new approach to leadership research that focused on leadership behaviors and leadership situations.
Stogdill’s second survey, published in 1974, analyzed 163 new studies and compared the findings of these studies to the findings he had reported in his first survey. The second survey was more balanced in its description of the role of traits and leadership. Whereas the first survey implied that leadership is determined principally by situational factors and not personality factors, the second survey argued more moderately that both personality and situational factors were determinants of leadership. In essence, the second survey validated the original trait idea that a leader’s characteristics are indeed a part of leadership. Similar to the first survey, Stogdill’s second survey also identified traits that were positively associated with leadership. The list included the following 10 characteristics:
drive for responsibility and task completion;
vigor and persistence in pursuit of goals;
risk taking and originality in problem solving;
drive to exercise initiative in social situations;
self-confidence and sense of personal identity;
willingness to accept consequences of decision and action;
readiness to absorb interpersonal stress;
willingness to tolerate frustration and delay;
ability to influence other people’s behavior; and
capacity to structure social interaction systems to the purpose at hand.
Part III, Writing from Sources Exemplar:
In an interview, Steve Jobs attributed some of his success to only having three close friends throughout his career. Jobs wisely took the position that trying to invest in too many friendships took away from his creative focus. Although he was the founder and leader of a multi-national, billion dollar company, Jobs was an introvert, or someone who takes pleasure and works best in solitary situations. Extroversion on the other hand is a personal trait in which humans tend to prefer interactions with others over solitary work or play. According to Sumanthi Reddy, research shows that genetics and social experience play a large role in whether humans experience introversion or extroversion. Moreover, acting more outgoing and social is well received “…in the U.S. and other western countries where extroversion is often perceived to be more valuable” (Reddy). However, research shows that introverts, like Steve Jobs, should not be underestimated as shy or inferior. Although introverts prefer to be less social, they are better suited for leadership positions because they are willing to listen to others, are analytical and adaptable, and are highly self-motivated.
Leadership requires skills in directing people, as well as using concerns and feedback to reevaluate a situation. In a leadership study by Stogdill, it reveals that leadership is determined by “both personality and situational factors” (qtd. in Northhouse). Leaders, as opposed to the average group member, excel at the following eight personality traits: “intelligence, alertness, insight, responsibility, initiative, persistence, self-confidence, and sociability” (Northhouse). Extroverts, who find it natural to interact with others, may possess strong initiative, self-confidence and sociability skills (Reddy). Indeed, a leader must use their intelligence and work well with others in order to be effective. While having these key leadership qualities is important, it is equally important for a leader to be skilled in understanding and evaluating their situation. According to Northhouse, those in leadership positions must be able to use their relevant traits in the appropriate situation. Therefore, “leaders in one situation may not be leaders in another situation” (Northhouse). In this case, introverts, who are natural observers and analysts of their situations, may be best suited for leadership. Introverts are “more reserved, but not necessarily shy,” and use their solitary nature to self-motivate, adapt to situations, and listen for feedback from others (Reddy).
When working in a group, there is nothing more frustrating than not being heard or not having your ideas considered. Sometimes leaders can overlook group members because they feel constrained by time or have a preconceived notion about how the project will be executed. Introverts are better suited for leadership in these instances because they demonstrate a willingness to listen to others. According to Susan Cain, introverts bring “a willingness to listen and implement other people’s ideas.” Because introverts are less likely to immediately express themselves, they listen to others ideas before offering their own. Adam Grant reports that “introverts outperform extroverts when leading teams of proactive workers” (qtd. in Cain). Introverts can easily manage a situation by leaving their self-expression and emotions out of it. This allows group members to be heard and valued.
Anyone working on a team wants a leader who knows how to approach a problem and find solutions. Introverts demonstrate the ability to analyze and adapt to situations. Susan Cain reveals that introverted children “tend to learn by observing instead of acting… they also notice more things in general.” This research reveals that as leaders, introverts possess the ability to fully observer and analyze a situation. Any team desires a leader who can see the entire situation and guide the group toward the best solution possible. Moreover, introverts can use their analytical skills to appropriately adapt to a situation. According to Sumanthi Reddy, several studies reveal that introverts are capable of acting like extroverts, and this behavior often makes them happier and more fulfilled. For example, Clark Powell a vice president of media relations, generally refers to himself as an introvert. However after making a presentation, “he is exhilarated afterward” (Reddy). Introverts find pleasure in stepping out of their comfort zone and adapting to situation. On the other hand, in a study conducted by Dr. Zelenski on over 600 college students reveals that “’We found acting like an introvert tended to wear out extroverts” (qtd. in Reddy). Extroverts are not as well suited to adapt as introverts are. Introverts can use their developed observation skills to adapt to a variety of situations.
Finally, a quality essential for the success of any group or leader is motivation. Because introverts need little social feedback, they are internally motivated. They find sources of pleasure in “learning new things and reading a good book” (Reddy). Clark Powell again reiterates that he is an introvert, which makes him “’extremely motivated to learn and grow as an individual’” (qtd. in Reddy). Introverts do not need social interaction or cues to feel motivated to do their best work. In fact, studies show that college students who were introverts “knew more than the extroverts about 19 subjects…because the more time people spent socializing, the less time they have for learning” (Cain). Introverts have an internal desire to be the best they can, which is an essential component of leadership.
Certainly, the best leader is one who is highly motivated, willing to listen, and analytical as well as adaptable to all situations. While a no one can be only an introvert or extrovert, an person who tends toward introversion is better suited for leadership. They possess the ideal personality and abilities to cope with situational factors. When being led by an introvert, group members will experience motivation to complete a project, having their ideas heard, and a sense of accomplishment. Who would not want to experience this kind of leadership.