To Thrive as a Leader, Your Need to Cultivate Your Curiosity
Thriving in today’s businesses need leaders who are curious as trends change in the blink of an eye. Curiosity is your key to cultivating your curiosity. Looking around and exploring what you can take advantage of is your opportunity to seek and finding sometimes the unexpected.
Let’s think about this for a minute: Children are naturally curious. They ask questions about nearly everything. Typically, most adults are hesitant to do this. Curiosity means taking risks. Innovation is inseparable from it.
Children are naturally curious and adults need to be curious as well. Studies have found that curiosity peaks at around age four or five and takes a steady decline from there. As people grow up, they become more self-conscious, more fearful about asking questions. Employees are often afraid to voice options and raise questions because they don’t want to bother others, or are worried they may be seen as incompetent or difficult.
Why Is This a Problem?
“Life is like a camera…focus on what’s important, capture the good times, develop from negatives, and if things don’t work out, take another shot.” – Ziad K. Abdelnour,
Many see great leaders as someone who is curious and explores new ways to solve problems, challenges, and difficulties. Curiosity is the desire to learn, to understand new things, and to know how they work. Curiosity is something we associate with children.
Curiosity can help you to get to the root of a problem, stop workplace drama, and promote better workplace relationships. What’s your curiosity level? What questions do you ask? How do you use curiosity to your advantage?
Start with Genuine Inquisitiveness
The following helps leaders cultivate curiosity not just for yourselves, but also for you to inspire your employees to use these skills for greater ideas. To compete in today’s dynamic and ever-shifting markets, employees and leaders have to ask questions. Start asking questions of “Why”, “How”, “What if…” and see how that sparks other questions.
Harness the power of your mind differently as you inspire your employees to do the same for greater results. What can curiosity do for you and your business? It opens up new worlds and possibilities. It makes you more observant to the things around you. By being curious you will be able to see new worlds and possibilities which are normally not visible.
Curiosity Fuels Competence (Curiosity: The Gateway Competency)
“I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious”
It’s hard to make progress without curiosity. Curiosity is a basic element of our cognition. Curiosity is such a basic component of your nature that you are most likely oblivious to. Leading with curiosity fuels more powerful questions, which leads to relationship, innovation, and transformation.
Great leaders drive innovation, and being curious essentially helps you with forward thinking and inspires you to find new ways of seeking creative and innovative solutions to old and new problems. Curiosity is strongly correlated with competence, better performance and ease of adapting to changing environments and new roles.
A study, which George Mason University psychology professor Todd Kashdan wrote about in Harvard Business Review, finds that 84 percent of respondents said their employer encourages curiosity, yet 60 percent say their employer has erected barriers that stifle it.
Curiosity Requires Confidence
Curiosity leads us to new thoughts and perspectives. Curiosity helps us break away from status quo by asking why things are the way they are and not some other way. Curiosity looks for what it does not know rather than confirm what it thinks it knows.
Rod Kurtz, guest lecturer at Wharton, said, “Insatiable curiosity is a key to great leadership.”
Believe in yourself. Start with small changes. Change stimulates different parts of your brain that improve creativity and clarity of your mind. The small changes you start with help your daily routine and help you solve the problems, challenges, and difficulties you have that keep you stuck.
Curiosity Fuels Leadership
Great leaders are constantly looking for new and better solutions. Great leaders are open to being proven wrong. Asking questions is the best way to. In fact, they set their egos aside and surround themselves with people whose ideas could be better than their own.
Curiosity inspires us to solve problems and think creatively. It’s ignited in what Professor George Loewenstein describes as the information gap: the gap between what we know and what we would like to know. It’s that feeling we experience when we don’t know something that inspires us to set out on the path to discovery.
Look for the Silver Lining
Every day offers opportunities to listen to new ideas, learn new things and try something different. Stay ahead of your competition with being curious and explore the world around you.
The above items help you move your leadership and company forward. Keep being aware of what’s around you for the opportunities to grow. Learn to listen without judging and without starting to formulate what you’re going to say next.
Embrace your inner child. Curiosity must be cultivated by asking probing questions. Curious people ask questions, read and explore. They are active about seeking information or experience, and are willing to meet challenges and to broaden their horizons. They are not shy to ask questions and delve deeply into the topic that interests them.