On a scale of 1-to-10, how curious are you as a person? Before you quickly answer this vital question, let’s look at the definition:
cu· ri· ous | \ ˈkyu̇r-ē-əs
Essential Meaning of curious
1 : having a desire to learn or know more about something or someone
curious, a neutral term, basically connotes an active desire to learn or to know.
When you think back on your latest encounter with another person at the corporate event, meeting or Zoom, the latest social gathering, who was the dominate orator? How many open-ended questions did they ask? How about you?
Or if you think back on the total clock of minutes during the conversations, how much was one or two people dominating the time talking, yet never asked any questions of the others present?
Having a curious dialogue with another human is an art, coupled with some science.
It is vital to ask yourself about your own curiosity. Why?
Is your own self-desire to be heard, getting in your way of being more curious and learning?
Is your own ego and self-centered focus on your agenda, an obstacle to your ability to learn or to truly know more about, what the individual you are in dialogue with believes or knows about a particular subject or topic?
You see, your own lack of curiosity may be the reason you are so frustrated. So lonely.
The true “Art” of being more Curious takes time to perfect. So that you do not become annoying to the others you are talking with at the next corporate or social gathering.
“The key word in the definition is “Desire”. If you lack the active desire to learn, then you are still a long way from getting to a place where you are truly more curious.”
At the same time, your own lack of transparency will also create questions by your colleagues of your reliability factor. Of your trustworthiness.
"How might you become more curious and simultaneously more transparent, so that others you are in dialogue with, will trust you and want to reciprocate with their own valuable information?"
One-to-one dialogue with another person will have different challenges, than a leader who is talking with their own team. You will need to practice these on a regular basis so that your curious behavior doesn’t create negative results.
Your total Human-to-Human experience practice, can be done with pure strangers in just minutes. Yet maybe with people you see or encounter on a regular basis and who are not really friends or your real work colleagues.
What about the person at your local market, who you choose to check-out with and so you can chat for a minute or two? Maybe it’s your favorite teller at your bank. Perhaps it is your lobby door person or security guard?
Start the dialogue with: “It is great to see you again.”
Ask a relevant “Open-ended” question: What, How, When, Where…
Become a better listener : "Developing influence requires effective communication, and effective communication begins with listening.
Listening is command central for effective communication. No other skill is as powerful or as necessary for developing understanding− and for communicating a desire to understand.
Perhaps the most common block to effective communication is impatience. So whatever your objective or agenda is, suspend it long enough to focus on what the other individual is saying and feeling. And display patience."
End the dialogue with: “It was great to talk with you again.”
Be interested. Be interesting. Be Curious!
Now you are well on your way to a life of “Continuous Learning” as a true leader…