The Genius of Opposites

11by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, PhD

© 2016 by Jennifer B. KahnweilerKahnweiler
Published by Berrett-Koehler Publishers
ISBN 9-781626-563056
168 pp.
Reviewed September 2015

This short book packs in a lot of practical information, significant research, and easy readability. Although it is most likely to be used as a development tool for business people, its themes can also be applied to any relationship where two people need to interact. The key is how to manage differences in approach between pairs 8who act (and react) as introvert and extrovert. The focus on results and the benefits of such pairs is summed in the subtitle: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together.

The author has assembled 5 key areas of interaction, based on her research. She then gives practical examples of how to improve the relationship for each of these key areas. In the second chapter, after setting the premise for the book, Dr. Kahnweiler presents a quiz, best taken by both halves of the pair, to assess the state of the relationship and how effectively it functions. At the end of each chapter are probing questions to further assess how the team functions together. As a result, this book can serve as a workbook for introvert-extrovert teams to assess and improve their working relationships.

The only shortcoming in the book – and, in fairness, was outside its scope – was how to address matters when there is a pair of introverts or a pair of extroverts that comprise a team. Also, the approach here is how to improve (or mend) an existing relationship and did not address the question of whether introvert-extrovert teams should be developed proactively. However, these are minor matters relative to the value of the book.

This book is recommended for anyone in business, whether paired with an opposite or not, in order to better understand the interaction of introverts and extroverts in the workplace.


Disclosure of Material Connection: This book was received for free from the author but a positive review was not required. The opinions expressed are those of the reviewer. This disclosure is in accordance with the United States Federal Trade Commission’s “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising” 16 CFR, Part 255.