Most leaders are attracted to the guy or woman who seems confident and outgoing, unafraid in any situation or facing any challenge. They expect an extrovert to infuse any team with energy, to push ahead on projects and to motivate colleagues to do their best work. Meantime they have low expectations of anyone who appears neurotic, who seems withdrawn and too anxious to live up to their potential. Leaders expect neurotic employees to contribute little and to drag down colleagues’ morale.
Not true, says a new study by Corinne Bendersky, an associate professor at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management. In a paper called “The Downfall of Extroverts and Rise of Neurotics: The Dynamic Process of Status Allocation in Task Groups,” Bendersky and co-author Neha Parikh Shah, an assistant professor at Rutgers Business School, explodes stereotypes about how extroverts and neurotics perform on teams.