Inspire Curiosity for Your Ideas by How You Communicate

Curiosity makes learning possible.

Ultimately, it’s a powerful driver of innovation and progress.

That’s why I was so excited to listen to this Knowledge@Wharton podcast. In it, astrophysicist Mario Livio is interviewed about his new book: Why? What Makes Us Curious.

Asked whether he thinks curiosity is a difficult trait to improve, Livio surprisingly says “No.”

Then, he points to how learning can be designed to evoke curiosity.

“If you teach science to young children, don’t start by trying to teach them things that they may not be interested in. Start with something they’re already curious about, like dinosaurs.”

As a mom, I thought, “This guy totally gets 3-year-olds.”

He continued by saying:

“Start with dinosaurs and then find interesting ways to connect from that to other concepts you would like them to learn, rather than starting from the beginning with something they may not be interested in.”

So what does this all have to do with communication skills?

That’s when the light bulb went off for me.

I immediately thought of Mandel’s communication framework: Situation-Complication-Implication-Position-Action-Benefit®, otherwise known as SCI-PAB®.

I realized that SCI-PAB isn’t just a tool for engaging in conversations or presenting your ideas—it’s a tool for inspiring curiosity.


By doing exactly what Livio describes (but with colleagues and customers, not preschoolers). SCI-PAB is a thinking tool that helps you focus first on the things your listeners care about most.

It helps you make YOUR idea—your product, your service, your recommendation, your solution—hyper-relevant to THEIR most pressing needs or wants.

And that’s where the magic happens.

Your listener grows curious enough to want to learn more. To have another conversation with you. To schedule that next meeting. To take the next step.

Why? Because you were able to make YOUR idea all about THEM and the things they care about most.

I know we talk a lot about SCI-PAB here at Mandel.

So much so, that you may be rolling your eyes right now.

But I’m not kidding when I say SCI-PAB has a near-cult following among business leaders who’ve brought Mandel’s framework into their organizations and among former communications training workshop participants.

And for good reason—it works.

If you’re curious about how to make other people more curious, check it out. And then let me know what you think.

Learn about SCI-PAB and download your personal pocket prompt.

P.S. Curious about how YOU can train thousands of employees on the SCI-PAB thinking tool from the comfort and convenience of their own desktops?

Contact us to get an advance preview of our NEW ONLINE learning course.

Picture of Heather Muir

Heather Muir

As Vice President of Marketing, Heather directs Mandel’s marketing, branding, and communications strategies in collaboration with the Executive Team. In addition, Heather leads Mandel’s public- and industry-relations activities. Prior to joining Mandel in 2010, Heather held several marketing and communications roles within the learning and training industry. She is also an active member of the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Training Industry, Inc.; eLearningGuild; and the Association of Briefing Program Managers (ABPM). Heather holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Davis, and has completed graduate courses in business and entrepreneurship at the University of Washington.
Related Posts