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A Winning Personality: Why Ambiverts Make Great Entrepreneurs Ambiverts are individuals with characteristics of both introverts and extroverts. Could this balance equip them to be superior business leaders?

By Jason Ankeny

This story appears in the March 2015 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Steve Ballmer is a maniac. Just days into the new year, the rookie owner of the NBA's Los Angeles Clippers took the internet by storm when he leaped from his courtside seat at Staples Center and began wildly gyrating to the music of halftime performer Fergie—a dance described by media outlets as "whacked out," "hilariously insane" and "enraged and ecstatic all at the same time."

The spectacle was nothing new to anyone who recalls Ballmer's 14-year tenure as Microsoft CEO: Bill Gates' handpicked successor was a notoriously towering presence at software developer conferences and industry events, stalking keynote stages like a caged animal—a shouting, sweaty Chris Farley character come to life.

Ballmer, we can surmise, is an extrovert. Or is he? You don't take command of one of the world's most influential companies or rack up a personal net worth of $22.5 billion without deep concentration and focus, keen observational skills and at least some capacity for self-reflection—attributes commonly associated with introverted personalities.