“How can I identify an introvert and what job roles would such a person be good at?”
Well, in my opinion, the answer leads up to one of the most crucial points about personality: The understanding of the difference between behaviour and personality.
To many people it would seem obvious that a person with charm, verbal skills and a great outfit would be an extravert. Along the same line of thinking, the individual with the poker face, the cat sweater and the bowl cut is spot on introvert.
But… Let us go back to the “obvious extravert” mentioned above. This social lion that seem so smooth and comfortable in that otherwise so stiff cocktail party. What does this person do, afterwards? This is a true measure of personality. The events afterwards is actually the only trace of the genuine self.
The social ability displayed is just behaviour, an acquired skill. Personality determines what the person truly feel while in the crowd, and behaviour determines what we, the observers will see. So personality is really a hidden secret for all of us.
As humans we have tremendous adaptation skills. We may act in a way that is non-linear to how we truly feel on the inside. We can appear confident when we are feeling insecure. We can seem adamant when we are shaky.
My experience is that a lot of seemingly social individuals are really introverts. They are simply practicing a skill that they have found useful in order to be successful in a given situation and in a culture that favours extraversion so strongly.
It is quite fascinating to consider the many celebrities that appear to have a great distance between their behaviour and their personality. Maybe comedians show the highest contrast here. Eddie Murphy describes himself as an introvert. This might seem strange to those who have seen his stand up or those 80’s movies that brought his fast talking persona worldwide fame.
My take away is that I find it crucial to terminate this idea that we can look at someone and know their personality. You can not visually identify a person based on posture or clothing. Even more important is to expel any ideas about how someone being an introvert or extravert should qualify that person for specific roles (“You can not be a journalist since you are an introvert” – Actual quote)
The relevance of the introvert and extravert traits is mainly about energy. The balance between those poles determines where we build up energy (either in solitude or from social interaction). However this balance does not determine what professions we can have or what skills we can acquire. The answer to the question about what an introvert could be good at, is: “whatever makes that introvert engaged”.
-I have also written a book on the topic of introversion. If you want to read more, then check it out