Curiosity and innovation

Encouraging people to be curious generates workplace improvements.

When we are curious, we view tough situations more creatively. Studies have found that curiosity is associated with less defensive reactions to stress and less aggressive reactions to provocation.

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Problem Solving

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Curiosity leads us to generate alternatives

When our curiosity is triggered, we are less likely to fall prey to confirmation bias (looking for information that supports our beliefs rather than for evidence suggesting we are wrong) and to stereotyping people (making broad judgments).

Curiosity encourages members of a group to put themselves in one another’s shoes and take an interest in one another’s ideas rather than focus only on their own perspective.

Thus, conflicts are less heated, and groups achieve better results.

  1. Hire for curiosity. Identify naturally curious people through interview questions and tests.
  2. Model inquisitiveness. Leaders can encourage curiosity throughout their organizations by being inquisitive themselves.
  3. Emphasize learning goals. Framing work around learning goals rather than performance boosts motivation.
  4. Let employees explore and broaden their interests.
  5. To support curiosity, encourage people to ask good questions.

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RELATED IDEAS

4 kinds of behavior

... account for 89 percent of leadership effectiveness:

  • Solving problems effectively;
  • Operating with a strong results orientation;
  • Seeking different perspectives;
  • Supporting others.

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IDEAS

Curiosity

It is the recognition, pursuit, and desire to explore novel, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous events.

Albert Einstein
"It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education. "

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