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Curiosity: no longer just a nice skill to have

The impulse to seek new information and experiences and explore novel possibilities is becoming a differentiating asset increasingly essential to business performance and success. According to a recent study based on data from LinkedIn, engagement with company posts that discuss curiosity has risen by 158% from 2020 to 2021. Additionally, job postings that mention the need for curiosity have increased by 90%.

The SAS survey done with about 2,000 leaders from five industries and six different countries reveals that curious workers enhance innovation, productivity, and problem-solving from recruiters’ view. According to the study, 72% of HR managers believe curiosity is critical. Already 51% say it has become more important over time. Leaders also believe this drives business impact (59%) and better performance (51%).

Curiosity is also a relevant trait, regardless of the type of role you play. SAS study leaders believe it matters to C-level executives (58%), directors and department leaders (56%), mid-level managers (51%), and entry-level employees (53%).

The report also categorizes managers into four curiosity-minded segments: high curiosity collaborators, flexibility-driven opinion seekers, productivity-focused leaders, and anti-curiosity leaders. Each segment has views about how valuable curiosity is as a trait in the workplace, where its benefits lie, and how curiosity can be encouraged among employees. Younger and newer managers are more likely to say that curiosity is a valuable trait (73% of Millennials and Gen X vs. 63% of Boomers).

On a global view, managers agree that the precious benefits of curiosity include:

  • Greater employee engagement and job satisfaction.
  • Greater efficiency and production.
  • Improved creative thinking.
  • Strong collaboration and teamwork.

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Source: SAS Curiosity@Work Report