Unleash the silent potential in your organisation.

Shyness is a diversity and inclusion issue

The discussion to date around diversity and inclusion has focused on demographics, gender, skin colour, social mobility and education.

But what about the way we think? What about our behavioural preferences?

In order to solve the trickiest problems and generate the best ideas, organisations need a mixture of personalities and preferences. They need cognitive diversity in order to function and succeed, particularly in challenging times

Diversity is about making sure everyone is represented; everyone is heard.

And yet, the quietest voices are often ignored.

We don’t talk about shyness. And yet..

57% of the British population are shy.

10% of the population are very shy.

*according to recent You Gov Research:

How big is the silent potential in your organisation?

Shy people are not comfortable speaking up

They are often silent, underestimated, or overlooked.

They shy away from networking, presenting, speaking in meetings and public speaking. They find it hard to butt in, to big themselves up, to share their ideas, to say yes to opportunities; to call out when something is wrong.

Their insights, ideas and solutions stay hidden.

That’s the silent potential in your organisation.

And it could be costing you millions.

You’re missing out on the good stuff

Every time you have a meeting at least 10% of your people may be silent.

Every time you run a brainstorm at least 10% of ideas might not be shared.

Every time you face a challenge at least 10% of solutions may remain secret.

Not just any 10%. The best 10%

We need to stop…

Shy and Mighty Podcast
  • Thinking shy people are unfriendly or aloof
  • Assuming shy people have nothing to say or contribute
  • Suggesting shy people“stop being so shy” and telling them to be more confident
  • Forcing shy people into situations that cause them great anxiety
  • Expecting shy people to contribute in meetings when people have to fight to be heard
  • Giving opportunities only to those who shout the loudest
  • Ignoring the achievements of people who do not blow their own trumpet
  • Trying to change shy people into something they are not, rather than appreciating what they are…

Shy people don’t need fixing.

Shy people have special skills; skills which your organisation needs.

They are more considered. Quiet observers. Deeper thinkers. Good listeners.

This leads to observations, insights, ideas, tweaks to process, different perspectives and solutions.

But, shy people are quiet and they often find it hard to speak up.

They may find it hard to disagree, to stand up and share their ideas, to voice their opinions.

In a culture where the loudest voices are dominant, quieter people are not able to voice their opinions.

They are often silenced. And their brilliant ideas and thoughts are lost.

Unless they feel safe and supported, shy people will continue to hide.

And the silent potential in your organisation will stay silenced.

And that’s where we come in.

Shyness is not simply a debilitation or a challenge.

Shy people have super powers.

These can include:

  • World class listening skills
  • Measured, considered decision making
  • Aptitude for uncovering key insights
  • Creative brains full of ideas
  • Ability to solve complex problems
  • High levels of concentration
  • Potential to become strong leaders in complex situations
  • Motivated by purpose and quality, not ambition
  • Talent for building meaningful connections and relationships

No man or woman left behind

Quiet people will often give you breakthroughs.

But without “psychological safety” they don’t contribute.

They find it hard to speak up, to share their ideas and opinions, to disagreeIn a culture where the loudest voices are dominant, quieter people stay quiet.

Their brilliant ideas and thoughts are lost.

They don’t fulfil their full potential.

Your responsibility is to create a culture and an environment which enables everyone in your organisation to contribute.

Unless they feel safe and supported, shy people will continue to hide.

And the silent potential in your organisation will stay silenced.

We need shy people to speak up

In healthcare, it has been found that a failure to speak up was “an important contributing factor in communication errors.” Studies show that surgical teams fail to speak up because of fear of the surgeon. And the more overbearing the surgeon the stronger the effect.

More than 30 plane crashes have occurred when co-pilots have failed to speak up. (National Transportation Board)

Google knows the value of diverse thinking and ideas. Teams with cognitive diversity are rated as effective twice as often by executives.

Now more than ever

We need to support shy people. We need them to speak up. In complex and challenging situations, dominance dynamics don’t work. They make it harder for people to be heard. And one dominant brain is not enough. This is precisely when we need a range of voices and perspectives. To maximise our collective intelligence.

Helping shy people to shine

I’m Nadia Finer, founder of Shy and Mighty. I’m a mindset coach, published author, podcaster and inspiring speaker – specialising in shyness. People call me the Shycologist.

I’m on a softly-spoken mission to help shy people overcome their fears and insecurities so that they can be braver and go bigger, without changing who they really are.

I know what it’s like to struggle with shyness. You see, all my life I’ve had a little voice. Really little. The kind of voice that makes random people tell me that I should be a cartoon voice-over actress. A voice so little that when strangers ring my house phone, they ask me to put my mum on the phone. It’s no wonder I’m often shy and self conscious!

I have spent the last 13 years helping people become braver and more confident so that they can achieve more in their work and life.

I’m the author of More to Life Than Shoes and Little Me Big Business. I’ve travelled the world, speaking at international conferences, and have appeared in the Guardian, Radio 4, Entrepreneur.com, The Telegraph, The Independent, HR Magazine and on BBC Radio London.

“The CMA invited Nadia to deliver a talk on shyness in the workplace for one of its ‘Tea & Talk’ events which are part of its corporate wellbeing programme. She was a pleasure to work with. She discussed our requirements, offered helpful suggestions and was interested in how we planned to follow up the event. Her talk was informative, inspiring and entertaining, and she encouraged and facilitated audience participation really well.”
Phil James

I just wanted to drop you an email to say thank you for the session today! You are so inspiring and I found your talk so relatable. I feel that I have taken so much from the advice you have given and can already tell that this is going to make a difference in my career and my everyday life. Keep doing what you are doing, because it’s FAB!.”
Claire, HR

“Just a quick note to say a HUGE thank you! That was a brilliant hour and me and the guys loved it. You really opened our eyes and made us consider both the issue, but more importantly the really positive potential that we are missing out on in our business and in our wider society. You speak with so much passion, humour and bags of humility. Good luck with your crusade. You are very mighty and very brilliant in my eyes.”

Carla Heath, MD, Whippet

“Shyness is not a topic that attracts a great deal of attention, which is paradoxical given the vast number of people affected by it. Nadia is the perfect person to give a first-hand experiential account of what it feels like to be shy, she has learned how to live with it and still be successful. Her approach is unique and accessible. Instead of viewing shyness as a problem, or a kind of impediment, she helps people to understand their shyness better and shows them how their shyness can work for them, rather than holding them back. Ultimately this approach gives people the right tools and attitude to thrive in a world populated by rather noisy people. Nadia is doing a marvellous job helping shy people live the fulfilled and happy lives they deserve.”
Karen J Pine

“Nadia is a very powerful presenter because she draws upon her own personal experience to help create a more inclusive world. Nadia shares great insights and offers very practical advice for line managers on how to adapt their style to ensure they are including the quietest voice in the room.” 
MOK O’Keefe  

“I asked Nadia to share her story. She didn’t disappoint. What struck me was her positive position on shyness; that she’s not interested in sympathy but rather championing the cause and benefits of the quieter people in the room. As we all struggle to be heard, particularly in these tricky times, it’s more important than ever we support and listen to the softer voices in the room. They often have the most interesting things to say.”
Rupert Pickle


Honest, straightforward advice to help you:

  • Unleash the silent potential in your organisation and make it easier for shy people to speak up and contribute.
  • Help you figure out where to start, when it comes to tackling shyness in the workplace.
  • Increase awareness of shyness as a diversity and inclusion issue in your organisation.
  • Bring together shy people in your organisation and facilitate an honest and open conversation with them around their struggles and needs.
  • Generate practical ideas and initiatives that would work across the organisation.
  • Create a solid and actionable plan.
  • Equip you to have a strategic and impactful conversation with your leadership team about what’s needed to unleash the silent potential in your organisation.


Despite her nerves and shyness, Nadia speaks regularly in organisations, at business and empowerment conferences, corporate events, networking events and at secondary schools.

Nadia’s speaking style is real, open, funny, and highly engaging. She gives audiences of all ages gentle support and encouragement to coax them out of the shadows and steadily towards their goals.

The topic of shyness sits under the diversity and inclusion framework, focusing in particular on confidence-building, teamwork, collaboration, and equal opportunity.

Nadia shares Shycology strategies that shy people can implement right away to help them take baby steps to becoming more mighty… as well as showing organisations and managers how they can help to nurture their shy people with Workplace Shycology.

Nadia Finer Shy and Mighty


Small group “UNMUTED” workshops specially designed to help shy people speak up in specific situations – from networking events, to meetings, presentations and conferences.

Facilitated by shy people who understand what it’s like to struggle with public speaking and feelings of awkwardness and self consciousness. We work in small groups of up to 8 people, to ensure even the most shy participants feel comfortable and supported.

Our goal is to help clients:

  • Become more comfortable speaking in meetings and sharing their ideas
  • Get used to speaking in public for example, giving presentations or keynote speeches
  • Connect with their unique voice – rather that trying to be something they are not
  • Focus on building rapport with the audience
  • Find tactics that make new challenges feel more comfortable
  • Take small steps towards their goals in a safe, supportive environment



One to one coaching to help clients step out of the shadows and overcome the elements of their shyness that are holding them back so that they are better able to speak up in meetings, share their opinions and present their ideas.

We use a tailored approach, following the Shycology System, and taking into account the context and needs of the individual.

Our goal is to help clients:

  • Explore and overcome the situations they find most challenging
  • Figure out how to make these situations more comfortable
  • Find their voice in different professional scenarios e.g. meetings, presentations, public speaking
  • Identify opportunities to have a greater impact, in a way that is comfortable
  • Raise their profile within the organisation
  • Work out paths and strategies that work for them
  • Take consistent action towards their goals


Nadia Finer coaching


Shy Potential is a group coaching program designed to help shy people:

  • Take baby steps forward, week by week, out of the shadows
  • Learn specific techniques to help overcome the aspects of shyness which are holding them back.
  • Get the practical and emotional support they need to embrace their uniqueness and achieve their goals.

The program includes:

  • 2 online group coaching calls per month where clients can ask questions and get the support and coaching they need to handle specific challenges and move forwards.
  • Weekly coaching activities designed to encourage baby steps
  • Online private coaching group – to provide support and community
  • Weekly coaching activities to encourage reflection and awareness

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