3 Habits Of Curious Leaders

Our book The Power of Curiosity launched last week and has received rave reviews. Thank you to our readers and supporters for being curious with us! We thought we’d share with you the foundation of our 3 part method. For more tips and tricks, get a copy of our book here

 PowerCuriosity 3D

In the Information Age, organizations want engagement, collaboration, innovation, inspiration, and accountability­­­­—skills that are currently expected of leaders yet aren’t being taught. Even as the culture is swiftly changing, most people are not. For example, as parents, we still use our own parents as role models when we tell our children what to do. (Almost all parents have heard their own parents’ words coming out of their mouths!) As leaders, we emulate the leadership styles we have experienced, resorting to a directive, controlling style when we feel our survival is at stake. As a professional, we may model our rapport with clients or patients on the approach of our mentors and others from whom we learned. That’s why, when we experience negative emotions in certain situations, we automatically return to the hierarchical model and find ourselves saying things that later we wish we could retract.

Our clients knew very well that they needed to engage their teams and have conversations that allowed for an authentic exchange of thoughts and feelings and promoted a respectful, productive dialogue that supported learning. The problem was that they didn’t know how to do it, and they were beginning to recognize that their go-to communication style was influenced by how their parents and teachers spoke to them when they were young.

In short, what our clients really needed and craved were tools, not theory. Specific, accessible tools that they could use anytime, anywhere that would support them in these emotional moments and help them identify opportunities in situations of potential conflict and achieve different outcomes. Wanting the same for ourselves, we set out to create those tools. With the help of our clients, we learned that relationships are everything—both professionally and personally. We learned that what we do is not as important as how we do it. We learned that a new language was needed to support leaders at all levels. And we learned that rarely, if ever, do we practice or develop the skills that are so fundamental to success in our relationships.

The method we will share with you has three parts. “Part One: The Curiosity Skills” will identify the three specific skills you need to incorporate into every aspect of your life in order to achieve the transformative outcomes you want: being present to ABSORB[1] what the speaker is saying, choosing how to listen in conversation, and asking curious open questions to understand. These three skills are going to help you shift from telling, judging, blaming, and shaming to being open to learning about yourself and others, which is exactly where new possibilities and opportunities become achievable.

In “Part Two: Using Curiosity to Understand Yourself,” you will then apply the three Curiosity Skills to yourself, as understanding yourself is a crucial first step to understanding others. Here you’ll learn where conflict typically begins: at the level of our values. As our workplaces, homes, and communities become more diverse, conflicting values are inevitable—but our negative reactions to conflict are not! The solution to conflict is not to avoid it, but to recognize it and respond with curiosity to defuse negative emotions early on. Through the power of curiosity, you’ll identify your values and your wants, implement appropriate boundaries, discover your own emotional triggers, and learn strategies to support yourself in those moments of potential conflict when you want to retreat or explode.

Finally, in “Part Three: Using Curiosity to Understand Others,” we will put it all together. Now that you’ve learned the Curiosity Skills and have used them to better understand yourself, you can apply these skills to all of your conversations with others, even the most challenging. You’ll learn a step-by-step process you can use in any conversation to avoid the discomfort of stress and fractured relationships altogether and transform potential conflict into positive outcomes and new opportunities.

 

The Power Of Curiosity can be yours – get it here.  

 

 

[1] ABSORB is an acronym you’ll learn more about chapter 2.

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