When your co-workers gossip about their weekend, do you reach for your noise-cancelling headphones? Love the thought of working undisturbed from home, or in your own office with a closed door? Hate the idea of big crowds and small talk? Then you, my friend, are likely to be an introvert, (and also a quiet achiever) While extroverts seem to rule the corporate world with their chatty, outgoing personalities, there are many great jobs for introverts.
But before we point you in the direction of good careers for introverts, let’s unpack what being an introverts means, and how it influences the way you work. Simply put, introversion and extroversion is all about energy. While extroverts get their energy from other people — talking, interacting, engaging — introverts find that people tend to wear them out, and they enjoy spending time on their own world. You can even be a mix of the two, which is known as an ambivert: you can be an extrovert who’s introverted, or an introvert who’s extroverted.
If you’re not sure if you’re an introvert or an extrovert, you can take a test here.
Being an introvert doesn’t mean that you don’t do events, parties or crowds, it’s just that you’d prefer not to because it’s draining, and you have to spend time on your own to recharge your batteries. Famous introverts include Elon Musk, Albert Einstein, JK Rowling, Meryl Street and Barack Obama. If you’re introverted, you’re definitely not alone (pun intended).
In workplaces, the best jobs for introverts are those that involve deep thinking, creativity solutions and working alone. The best careers for introverts are those that where meetings and social engagements are few or minimal, and you can just get on with the task at hand independently.
So what are the best jobs for introverts? What are great careers for introverts? Ideally, introverts and enterprises should be capitalising on the rise of remote work, and using a time tracking app like Traqq for task, team and time management.
1. Freelance writer
Freelance writing is one of the best introvert careers because it’s so varied. A portfolio of writing projects could include ghost writing thought leadership pieces for CEOs; writing sales copy for products and services; content writing for websites and blogs; writing LinkedIn profiles and curriculum vitaes; writing scripts, case studies and white papers; and working on your own paying personal projects like op-eds, essays, memoirs and stories. The list really is as limited as your imagination.
If you have expertise in a specific area, consulting is a good job for an introvert. A consultant is hired by a company to solve a problem, which could be a strategic or operational. While many consultants operate on a face-to-face basis to collect information from customers, clients and employees in order to shed light on the problem, this data collection could be undertaken by Skype, Zoom or Google Forms, for example. Then it’s a matter of writing a comprehensive report analysing the problem, and devising solutions and recommendations that the enterprise can implement.
3. Information Technology
Like writing, IT is an excellent career for an introvert because of the variety. While you do have to work as part of a team, the work is often solo in nature — and requires creative problem-solving and immersion in detail which introverts typically enjoy. Introverts can work in roles like software development and testing, business analysis, SEO and IT project management — and with hacking and data threats on the rise and the inherent risks — cyber security. And the need for talented IT people will increase, not decrease, so your skills will always be required.
Looking for a career that combines strategy, creativity and analysis? Marketing has been one of the best jobs for introverts since well before 2017… and after — especially as digital marketing is so in demand. You can design and run Facebook and YouTube ad campaigns, crunch the numbers of Google Analytics to inform marketing strategy, and create content calendars — and content — for social marketing efforts. And you can do all this from the comfort of your couch or cafe.
5. Art and design
What do painters, photographers, sculptors, graphic designers and the like have in common? They are all ideal jobs for introverts. You get to spend time “in the zone”. You get to spend a lot of time on your own. You get to be innovative and creative. Yes, you might have to do the odd meet and mingle if you are exhibiting and there is an event launch, but you can do that on your own terms. And artists are expected to be introverts, so you don’t have to explain why you prefer the hermit lifestyle and why you’ll only spend two hours at your exhibition opening.
This is probably a question that an accountant never asks. If you love numbers and spreadsheets, and want an introvert job with excellent career prospects, you can’t go past accounting. Accountants are always in demand. You can take on freelance clients, dealing with large and small enterprises, or you could work remotely for just one business, or be self-employed with your own client base. Auditing and forensic accounting are other options within the accounting field that require attention to detail —lots of numbers and analysis, and an essentially solo approach.
7. Landscape designer
One of the best careers for introverts doesn’t involve being glued to your laptop. Those introverts who love nature and the great outdoors in all kinds of weather should consider landscape design. You get to design beautiful spaces with your knowledge of plants, horticulture and the environment. You can niche down into tiny gardens for tiny homes, or design gardens for urban developments. Each space will come with different specifications, so the job will never be boring.
8. Mobile mechanic
Another great job for introverts who don’t like staying indoors is the mobile mechanic. Turn your love for tinkering with engines and fixing cars into an interesting career that has you out and about all day, every day solving all kinds of mechanical problems in creative ways. You can work for an automobile association, a private company or franchise or set yourself up as a solopreneur running your own business. Your day will be infinitely varied!
Mention that you work as a librarian, and the assumption is that you are bit of a shusher. Libraries have evolved from the quiet places of old into creative hubs that offer innovative analogue and digital solutions for the communities they serve. If you like interacting with people, you have a public-facing option as an introvert job, but you could also work behind the scenes as a researcher, database manager or archivist. You can hunker down in delicious isolation in a library and no one will bat an eyelid.
Who said learning French, or Indonesian or Swahili in high school was a complete waste of time and you’d never use it? With globalisation, there is a definite need for talented people who speak a variety of languages to translate all kinds of documents — marketing materials, websites, technical documents, you name it — because often Google Translate just doesn’t cut it. Someone sends you a document, you translate it. Simples! And do you think the subtitles on Netflix write themselves? Yeah, no. It was most likely an introvert with one of the best jobs in the world who wrote them.
11. Travel agent
Think travel agent, and you most likely associate this job with an office, travel brochures and lots of people streaming in and out. Not the case, as many travel agents now work independently from home, or remotely for a travel company in areas like product development — a great job for an introvert. Organising itineraries, researching and booking flights, accommodation and transport is still necessary in this age of DIY travel because of the expertise and attention to detail that this job requires, particularly for certain demographics. And travellers like a fall-back plan, something that doesn’t exist if you book your travel yourself.
The number one thing to think about when deciding on a job or a career as an introvert is fit. Does the work meet your requirements for solitude, creativity and innovation? Always read through the job description carefully, and have an honest conversation with your potential boss about your needs. You’ll be happier — and so will the people paying your salary.
If you need an app to help you manage your tasks and time more efficiently and productively, Traqq is your jam. With built in privacy protection and encryption to keep your data safe, you can use it even when your access to WiFi is limited — the app will sync when you are next online. Try it free today, and you’ll have full access to the entire suite of tools.