curious leaders. serious results.

Curiosity. It’s a trait most often attributed to kids. And for good reason – kids have endless questions. Kids can teach us many lessons if we’ll only quiet the noise both inside and outside our head. The best lesson – especially for today’s leaders – is to rekindle our curiosity.

Being a leader today is hardly child’s play. Changing markets. New technologies. Disengaged workforce. The list goes on.

And our biggest challenge? Getting people to work across silos. The biggest challenge under any leader’s control is getting people to work together. So how do we do this? Lead with curiosity.

Research shows:

  • Curiosity helps everyone adapt to uncertainty. Leaders know the only thing certain about today’s business environment is uncertainty. As opposed to being hampered by the fear and reservation that comes with uncertainty, being curious puts us on the offensive. Curiosity brings forth exploration and investigation…and makes things less uncertain.
  • When we’re curious, we think more deeply and more rationally about our decisions. Curiosity is an endeavor to learn and understand more. When we’re curious we not only gather more information but also formulate more context and broader perspective. When we have more information, context and broader perspective, it makes sense that we are more rational with decisions.
  • Leading with curiosity gains you more trust and respect and inspires employees to develop more trusting and collaborative relationships. It’s easy to understand how more trust and respect in any organization are helpful, but we often overlook the importance of trusting and collaborative relationships, especially across silos. By leading with curiosity, we silently give permission for others to be curious. And better relationships across silos lead to better productivity and results.

We all know how to be curious. Is your organization curious? If the answer is no, start leading with curiosity. 

What does it mean to lead with curiosity?

Did you know that between 40-95 percent of human behavior is habit, including thought? This doesn’t bode particularly well for organizations—especially if you consider that everyone from entry-level roles to the executive suite likely operates on autopilot for a decent portion of their day. While we can’t really hack our brains to operate at 100%, we can do some retraining to create more positive and productive patterns of thought. The most overlooked way to achieve this is through curiosity. 

At its core, curiosity is the desire to know something not because you have to, but because you want to. While maybe not the most obvious leadership trait, it’s one of the most impactful. Curious leadership requires the suspension of judgement and the discipline to listen more often than you speak. Through deep engagement with sometimes unexpected or seemingly unrelated topics and a willingness to empathize with the lived experience of others, business leaders can build trust and make both logical and human connections—ultimately driving innovation and efficiency.

Why Does Success Favor the Curious?

Success. It’s something we all define differently and yet we tend to agree on what makes a successful person. Successful people:

  • See what others don’t—PRESENCE & AWARENESS
  • Connect with people—TRUST
  • Take action—COURAGE
  • Don’t fail. Continuously learn—OPTIMISM

As curious people, we show up differently:

  • We are constantly learning, with most learning coming from everyday life
  • We are present in the moment with heightened awareness to all that is going on around us
  • We are authentic, dropping our egos in our pursuits
  • We are courageous, resulting from our sincere desire to learn and no ego to shield the insecurity of not knowing—and we put ourselves out there early and often

Curious people are leaders willing to go off the beaten path and find new ground—all in pursuit of their purpose.

Our Curious Journeys

Welcome to the land of the curious – a place that belongs to us all. 

Curious people show up differently. As curious people, we are driven more from within than without, choosing to engage in the world with wonder instead of judgement. This opens up tremendous opportunities. And while curiosity doesn’t make our pursuits less challenging, it does make them more fun. 

Below are some thoughts on curiosity. Please reach out and share your thoughts.

Curiosity is something we’re all born with. 

Curiosity. It’s something that appears to be quickly dismissed as child’s play yet is fundamental to all transformative progress—both for individuals and the world at large. 

Curiosity allows us to be ok with uncertainty—it helps us build the bridge from certain to uncertain. You know what you know and are willing to explore what you don’t know. 

Curiosity carries no ego—it shows up plain and fully exposed—and because of that, it’s authenticity at its best. 

Curiosity is the authentic desire to bring connection, something all humans are wired for, between a known and an unknown. 

Because of its exploratory nature, curiosity leads us to pick our heads up higher, putting more things into context and broadening our perspective. 

Curiosity builds courage as we find exploration less scary. 

Curiosity builds trust—both within and without. 

Curiosity brings us to our own aha moments—making connections and finding broader context. It fills gaps within each of us, putting us on more solid ground. 

Curiosity builds confidence, not because we know about more pieces but because we see how the pieces are connected. 

Curiosity powers our journey.