Psychotherapists are in broad agreement that there are two types of personality: extroverts and introverts. Admittedly they are two expansive extremes with many shades of grey in between but the type that interests me most is the introverts.

Simply put, introverts have changed the world and are wildly misunderstood in an extrovert-centric society.

Examples of famous introverts include Charles Darwin, Mahatma Gandhi, Rosa Parks and Albert Einstein. As a side fact, my company logo is the true chemical symbol for Einsteinium.

And it’s not just a historical thing, the leading profiles of businesses follow an introverted suit…

  • Marissa Mayer, Yahoo
  • Elon Musk, PayPal and Tesla
  • Larry Page, Google
  • Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook

At first glance, introverts and exhibitions would make strange bedfellows but in a psychological profiling project I am doing of successful exhibitors, guess what?

It looks like introverts are as likely to be successful as the extroverts.

The classic advice of exhibiting by the old guard is to be showy, be brave, shout, shout loud and then shout even louder. But here are five reasons why I would have an introvert on my exhibiting team all day long.

1) Quiet selling

Introverts don’t need to be the centre of attention and tend to let visitors talk about their world and the problems that they need resolving.

As an exhibition visitor, I would much rather lead a conversation with an exhibitor that listens than have some conversation wedged down my throat.

This article by Psychology Today gives great examples of introverted selling.


2) Personality balance

Have you heard two extroverts talking on an exhibition stand? It’s painful right? It’s like two stags rutting for volume and attention.

The saying opposites attract runs true and the fact remains that extroverts and introverts actually enjoy each other’s company. A balance of personalities would then create the optimum exhibiting team.


3) Idea generation

I’m not hating on extroverts and being introverted does not automatically make you more intelligent.

It’s just that the best ideas often happen when people are in a more reflective, introverted mindset. So when it comes to exhibition planning, creation and management…yep you guessed it…

Check out this article about optimising creativity.


4) Weighty words

In a highly extrovert world that just can’t stop talking, introverts simply won’t speak unless they have something worthwhile to say.

OK, introverts may not be able to attract visitors to the stand but that’s where extroverts come into their own…It’s like using the old school sales profiling of hunters and farmers – optimise your team to their strengths for the best results.


5) Calm leaders

By their very nature, exhibitions are high-energy environments.

They bombard people’s senses with a variety of sensory stimulations. The profile of low-key personality of introverts has been classed as a true leadership quality and can provide calm reassurance to exhibition stand visitors and colleagues.

Noise adds to the chaos so an exhibition stand can benefit from introverted serenity.



As with everything a balance of both personality types to suit all sorts of visitor and stand staff is the best practice for exhibiting.

Just be wary next time you write off the quiet ones…

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Jim heads up Exhibitor Smarts, which is a specialist exhibitor agency working alongside organisers and suppliers to maximise exhibitor revenue.

If you want more information about the Exhibitor Smarts please visit our website at www.exhibitorsmarts.com

For exhibiting tips and chats follow Exhibitor Smarts on twitter:  @exhibitorsmarts

Image thanks to Bloomberg – Cheers guys!


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