Book review: 'The Introvert Entrepreneur'

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

Introverts can achieve entrepreneurial success by knowing their "FUDs."

Sometimes, you'd just like to run home.

It's quieter there. No noise, no crowds, no networking or small talk. You're a private person in a world seemingly filled with extroverts-which makes things difficult when you're trying to start a business. So how can you work around your need for solitude while you also need to work?

The Introvert Entrepreneur by Beth Buelow is a start.

You don't mind going solo; in fact, you rather prefer it, but you can't: you have a business to run, which creates its own challenges. Crowds are "draining," but networking is essential. You like to think things through carefully, but your business needs quick answers.

Yep, like Bill Gates, Michael Jordan, and Warren Buffett, you're an introvert. The good news is that, also like them, your strengths as an introvert can enhance your entrepreneurship.

To begin, understand the true definition of "introvert," and know where you stand within it. You may be surprised to see that you have attributes that lie on the extroverted side of the spectrum, which is normal, says Buelow. The thing to remember is that "slapping a label on you" isn't what it's all about.

Open up by knowing your strengths and recognizing your challenges. Embrace fear and remember it serves a purpose-being fearless teaches us nothing.

Know your FUDs ("fear, uncertainty, and doubt") because they represent "something that wants attention." Embrace social media; it may be an introvert's best tool. And finally, learn to network.

"If you have to (do it) anyway, you might as well find a way to make it less painful and more profitable."

As an introvert, I was eager to read this book. How can I change my stick-close-to-home tendencies in order to grow my business? The answer was inThe Introvert Entrepreneur, but it took some digging.

The good stuff comes when Buelow goes past the superficial and into the real work of doing business as an introvert. There-especially in the chapters on fear and networking-are the reasons why I think this book is worth having.

In the end, I found what I needed and, particularly if you're an introverted business newbie, I think you will, too. For you,The Introvert Entrepreneur is a home run.

The Introvert Entrepreneur

Beth Buelow, Perigee

$15.95, 272 pages