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Interviewing Introverts

1099 Views 9 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  series0
So I've been looking for a roommate and there have been a few people coming over individually to inspect my apartment. I took the opportunity to get try to get to know the potential tenants to see if I'd be compatible living with them, but I've come across a problem I'm not sure how to deal with.

Doing my whole INTP mirroring thing in social situations, it's not hard for me to keep a conversation going as long as both sides are contributing. I had an extrovert come over yesterday and we hit it off quite well, and she chattered on and on about herself so I got to know quite a bit about who she was. I felt comfortable that I got to know this person and she seemed like an okay person to live with.

Today, I had another person come to inspect the apartment. Being an introvert, I had to force myself to come up with conversation topics and I tried to present opportunities for the other person to share information with me. I knew a little bit about her from the texts she sent me, and I tried to bring up her occupation, heritage, etc. to try to bring her out of her shell. She wasn't keen on talking to me much, and didn't have many personal questions directed at me either. I can respect people who like their privacy and I also understand that some people need time before they're comfortable talking about themselves, but in a situation where I'm trying to gauge if I'm compatible with someone, there simply isn't time for this, especially when I need someone to move in next week.

So how do I know if I'm turning down someone who might be compatible with me just because they haven't opened up? It's like speed dating with a strong and silent type; you can only get a vibe from someone, but that isn't really enough to base any logical conclusions off a person.

I consider myself an introvert, but I've developed my social skills to the extent where most people would point at me and say I'm an extrovert when they first meet me (in one-to-one situations). Even though I hate small talk, I still do it, and I do it well. Is that so rare, or am I actually extroverted instead? I consider myself an introvert that's not shy, and talks like an extrovert when the situation requires.
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I don't like the idea of writing people off before I get to know them properly, but the issue with interviewing strangers and judging them is that you haven't got the time to get to know reserved people. I know some quiet people are very interesting once they do open up, but I don't have the time or money to give this special treatment to everyone that I interview. I'm not asking this solely from an "I'm desperate looking for a flatmate" point of view, I'm asking it in a general way too. How do you know if you're letting wonderful people slip by because you're in a hurry? It would be so great if there was a magic looking glass that could see into the mind and soul of individuals (though it would be frightening too, and could reveal too much information sometimes).

As I consider myself an introvert, I don't like the idea of writing people off just because they're introverted (like me) or reserved. Maybe I just forced myself to get better social skills to deal with interview situations. But just because someone isn't wonderful at social skills that doesn't mean they don't make great friends and mind mates. I don't like the idea of gravitating towards choosing people I can open up easily because I'm probably missing out on a lot of great stuff in quieter people too. *sigh*
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