Curiosity, The Gateway to Long Term Leadership

“Around here, however, we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we’re curious…and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”
Walt Disney

As you climb the ladder from supervisor to executive do not forget the core quality that made you successful….curiosity.

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.”
Albert Einstein

Curiosity did not kill the cat, curiosity is what allowed you to become a successful leader. It is also the lack of this quality that makes leaders fail. When you think you have all the answers, or you know what the other person will say, or you know what they are thinking, or you know better …. you are toast.

“Somehow I can’t believe that there are any heights that can’t be scaled by a man who knows the secrets of making dreams come true. This special secret, it seems to me, can be summarized in four Cs. They are curiosity, confidence, courage, and constancy, and the greatest of all is confidence. When you believe in a thing, believe in it all the way, implicitly and unquestionable.”
Walt Disney

Here are the core skills that allowed you to move up the ladder or take on a greater responsibility:

Do seek first to understand
Do ask open ended questions
Don’t be tied to your answer
Do get disparate points of view from others
Do share your thinking and perspective and be willing to be challenged
Don’t say “no” to an idea or input from others, say thank you
Do suspend judgement
Do treat each person with respect, regardless of position or experience
Do be comfortable with too many opinions or cooks in the kitchen, the answer will naturally appear through the noise… it always does
Don’t ask “why”, this word brings up defenses in others ( for those of you who have been through the five whys, please contact me directly to debate this one.)

“Curiosity is, in great and generous minds, the first passion and the last.”
Samuel Johnson

Remember your success as a leader will always be connected to your willingness and curiosity to find a way that works for the whole.

Continue to Explore,

Bobbie Goheen