How Curiosity Boosts Employee Engagement and Work Performance | On Careers

What habits make you happier and improve your work performance? Intellectual curiosity may be key, according to new research. His 2022 study, published in the European Medical Journal, found that employees who report higher levels of curiosity lead to higher levels of job satisfaction and performance, are more engaged and meaningful at work. It turned out to be more likely to find

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Other studies support these findings, including one by Harvard University’s Francesca Gino, who surveyed 3,000 employees about why curiosity matters in the workplace. In his Gino’s “The Business Case for Curiosity” published in Harvard Business Review, he found that 92% of respondents viewed curiosity as “a catalyst for job satisfaction, motivation, innovation, and high performance.” It turns out that there is

Lauren Henkin, founder and CEO of The Humane Space, a wellness and education app designed to foster curiosity, says, “There is an overwhelming correlation between curiosity and overall job satisfaction. ,” said a more curious company culture improves job satisfaction, performance and performance. Innovation and a desire to continue working for the company.

Can intellectual curiosity be taught?

Henkin believes that curiosity is “natural in all of us” and therefore does not need to be taught. It is compared to a sensation such as thirst.

“We tend to think that curiosity is only for childhood,” says Henkin. “But curiosity doesn’t end in childhood. It actually increases as we get older. The only thing that changes is how we practice curiosity – young adults are more interactive adults prefer more passive activities such as reading.

How can we cultivate intellectual curiosity?

With these points in mind, steps can be taken to increase intellectual curiosity. Henkin recommends the following strategies to encourage curiosity:

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Take a brain break. In the workplace, we often transition from one problem-solving effort to another. A great way to spark intellectual curiosity is to encourage the employee to take short brain breaks throughout her day.

“Just as a physical fitness coach encourages you to get up from your chair and walk, it’s also important to exercise and recharge your mind,” Henkin explains. “We all need a break during the day, but we sometimes mistake that need for procrastination. helps you focus.”

As an example, she says that even taking five minutes to explore your personal passions while working can give your brain the healthy rest it needs. “You might read an article about a new gardening technique, watch a video about astronomy, or hear a unique sound experience,” says Henkin.

In awe. Studies show that people who experience a sense of awe, or vastness, more often tend to be more curious. Henkin calls awe “the cousin of curiosity,” pointing out that some of history’s greatest scientific breakthroughs were driven by awe and curiosity. While many organizations reserve the possibility to experience awe only at special events, such as hosting corporate retreats in beautiful locations or inviting experts to speak on inspiring topics. , I encourage you to try to incorporate reverence into your daily routine.

“For employees, a short 5-10 minute walk outdoors is a great way to experience awe, increase curiosity, and improve physical and mental health,” says Henkin. . “Awe doesn’t have to stay in a monumental place like the Grand Canyon. Seeing the wings of butterflies in your backyard can make you feel awe.”

How to improve employee engagement

Low intellectual curiosity often leads to lack of engagement and can encourage quiet quitting in a vicious cycle. Increasing opportunities to harness curiosity and awe can be an effective solution on how to improve employee engagement when trying to create a culture of motivated innovation at your company.

Henkin suggests two important ways to reverse quiet termination. As her first strategy, she points out that The Humane Space has her Slack channel dedicated to celebrating personal passions.

“Many of our staff members are multi-talented and have a range of interests: executives who are gourmet chefs, writers who are musicians, editors who are artists,” she says. “By celebrating our employees’ pursuit of their passions, we have strengthened our connections with them while encouraging curiosity and expansive thinking,” she said.

Humane Space also uses existing communication channels to open up lines of communication between remote workers, facilitating connections on what Henkin calls “level planes.”

“One of the ways we support other companies is by having quick conversations on topics that aren’t related to normal workplace conversations,” she says. “This diversity of conversation helps connect the team in a social way while allowing the lowest-level employee in the organization to communicate with members of her C-suite. Both groups can connect without interfering with

By making corporate cultures driven by intellectual curiosity, employers are more likely to rehire and quit quietly while improving employee job performance, satisfaction, innovation and connectedness. can have the opportunity to reverse the

“The more we help employees connect with each other on a personal level, encourage questions, and open channels for cross-functional contributions, the greater the incentive to work, create and thrive.” says Henkin.

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