I’ve learned a great deal by being a student of human behavior, but I’ve learned even more by being a student of my own behavior. One of the most important things I’ve learned is that two behaviors that I manifest result in two very different outcomes. If we are serious about achieving great results or developing potential in ourselves and others, it is important to be aware of our need to be right and our being curious.

Having asked countless participants at our Top 20 training sessions how they operate when they need to be right and when they are curious, they have shared the following:

When I need to be right, I

Don’t listen

Get louder

Am cocky, smug or arrogant

Am defensive

Don’t ask questions

Am close-minded

Argue my point


When I am curious, I


Am calm

Am humble

Am optimistic

Ask questions

Am open minded

Value other’s ideas

Search for other possibilities

If needing to be right and the behaviors listed above become our habit, the potential we have to attain incredible results will not be realized. However, amazing results will occur in our relationships and experiences if we maintain our curiosity.

Parents don’t read to their young children books titled Cocky George, Defensive George or Close-Minded George. They read Curious George because they recognize the innate value of curiosity and try to promote it in their children.

That raises a challenging question. What profession is responsible for maintaining curiosity in kids? Is it lawyers, hair stylists, architects, or marine biologists? No, it’s educators. Teachers are responsible for fostering curiosity in children. In fact, it may be the primary way we measure their effectiveness. How well are they keeping curiosity alive in their students?



  1. When does a need to be right come up in my life? What impact does it have on the results I experience?


  1. How would I assess my impact on the curiosity of young people?


From our team…Willow, Kevin, and Tom…who help quiet my need to be right.


Paul Bernabei


Top 20 Training