Workplace Curiosity: The Overlooked Ingredient of Efficient Process Work

So much of our work here at Poka-Yoke Solutions centers around cultivating workplace curiosity. After observing thousands of employees across various industries and sectors of the workforce, it’s astonishing that 95% of employees never question what they’re doing. Perhaps they complain and are disgruntled about what they’re doing, but it’s a rarity to find an employee who gets curious and seeks to find solutions.

As an operations agency, we find tremendous value in cultivating workplace curiosity. Curiosity trickles down from the top. If the leadership of the organization gets curious and uncomfortable, the remainder of the organization will take that as a sign to get curious, too!

We’ve talked about this on our Instagram (if you’re not following us, this is your sign), there are a few ways we recommend cultivating curiosity amongst your fellow team members, direct reports, and perhaps even managing-up when it comes to curiosity cultivation!

  • Create space in meetings – or one meeting a month – solely designated for brainstorming and strategic planning.
    • Challenging the status quo and thinking outside of the box so often gets put on the back burner when it needs to become part of our daily routine. This meeting is the time for “What if we tried this…” or “Have we thought about trying it this way?” It designates a special time and place to think outside the boundaries, and gives employees the opportunity to bring something special to the table. 
  • Facilitate cross-collaborative learning and understanding across departments and teams.
    • Utilize a few of our favorite phrases: 
      • “I’d love to better understand that process.”
      • “Challenge my thinking, but what if we considered this way of trying it?”
      • “Could you educate me on that topic? That’s fascinating.”
    • It’s key that the meeting doesn’t fall down a rabbit hole with these extemporaneous topics, but it serves as a jumping off point to collaborate further and put curiosity firmly back in employee ownership.
  • Emphasize and encourage personal and professional development goals and growth.
    • If you are signed up for our email list, you are familiar with one of our favorite ways to start a meeting. Name one thing you’re happy about in your personal life, two things you’re excited about that you’re currently working on, and three things you’re excited about with work that are on the horizon.
    • While a learning and development budget with active connections to tangential work topics is ideal, it’s not always feasible.
    • What’s a great way to start facilitating that growth? Start with yourself! Take a class or listen to a Masterclass and share that enthusiasm and curiosity with your team.

We’re ready to cultivate workplace curiosity in the form of processes, systems, and people implementation and management with your team like we have for hundreds of other teams across 45+ companies in more than 24 industries. 

Visit our website to learn more, and book a call.

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