Seeing these two words, you may instinctively begin thinking of business growth or the concept of “growth hacking”. Rather, having a growth mindset means you as an individual believe that you can improve upon your basic abilities and that intelligence can be developed.
It’s a fantastic concept, coined by Carol Dweck, which is discussed in her book ‘Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” and after reading I knew that I had to share some learnings from her book and other sources here on the blog! Plus, the concept and her book are the result of her thirty-year study of why some people excel and others don’t!
Fixed Mindset vs Growth Mindset
At a high level:
Fixed mindset is where a person believes that their level of intellect or ability is fixed as good or bad. Growth mindset is where a person believes that their level of intellect or ability is changeable and challenges or setbacks provide opportunities to improve.
How do you know which one you are?
Think about some of the examples below, do they sound like something you have thought or would think?
I can’t do it, I’m not smart enough.
If I fail, it will be too embarrassing.
That project wouldn’t have had problems if I’d been more talented.
I can’t transform my business because it’s too hard.
I don’t know how to do that now but I can learn.
If I don’t try, I’ll never know if I can do it.
I will become more talented by trying and working hard to do a good job.
With time and effort, I can learn how to transform my business.
Still not sure which one you are? Try an online quiz!
How can you change your mindset?
I absolutely love the four steps Carol Dweck has put on her website!
Learn to hear your fixed mindset “voice”.
Recognise that you have a choice.
Talk back to it with a growth mindset voice.
Take the growth mindset action.
Why is a growth mindset good for business?
If you look at the fundamental way each mindset works, a growth mindset encourages employees and businesses to challenge themselves, become curious and push for feedback. This drives an ability to quickly adapt to change and try new things without fear of reprimand from management.
A fixed mindset however, encourages group thinking and makes people less able to react quickly to challenging situations. Ultimately, that mindset and way of working could be to the detriment of the company as a whole as people become averse to admitting mistakes and learning from them.
Business Owners: Think about the type of culture that you want to instil within your organisation and how your processes, incentives and polices drive a certain mindset within your staff. What could you do to encourage a growth mindset within your employees?
Employees: When you look at yourself, your colleagues and your company as a whole; do you see more of a fixed or growth mindset? If you see more of a fixed mindset, think about how you can change your own thinking and challenge the mindset of those around you.
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