A “Growth Mindset” is both a buzzword and an often ideological concept in today’s world. It’s the idea that skills are not innate, nor are they ever fixed. Rather, it is the notion that anyone can develop, grow, and nurture their talents to maximize efficiency and success – both in personal life and in business! The problem with implementing a “growth mindset” culture nowadays is that it’s easy to stick the terminology into a mission statement or action plan, and hope that the sentiment alone will become a self-fulfilling prophecy. However, the truth is that truly developing a “growth mindset” requires a lot more than that: it involves action, risk, and – ultimately – reward!
Here are the Top 5 rules necessary for creating a Growth Mindset:
- Encourage risk and embrace challenges: It’s true what they say: The best lessons can be learned from failures, and nobody knows that better than Google. In fact, Google has a documented plan in place for dealing with failures, aptly named the “postmortem”. Ensuring that risks – when taken intelligently – are encouraged and rewarded whether they succeed or not is one key to giving individuals and teams the confidence and freedom to maximize creativity and grow.
- View effort as the path to success: The key difference between growth and fixed mindsets is the idea that “hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.” Microsoft sets a great example here. Every year, they host “Talent Talks,” in which the CEO personally takes weeks to meet with the heads of each division of the organization to discuss potential rising leaders . This way, there are opportunities for anyone and everyone to grow!
- Embrace criticism: We believe 360 Assessments are key to growth – both to find out from multiple perspectives what strengths you can leverage, and to receive constructive feedback in order to target areas of development. Completing the 360 Feedback process with action planning, coaching, and follow-up is a critical part of the cycle for personal and professional growth.
- Follow the inspiration of others: While self-improvement and individual growth are certainly large parts of an overall growth mindset, the only way to encourage a culture shift company-wide is to rely on teamwork to make the dream work!
- Be patient: Change doesn’t happen overnight – especially when that change involves an entire culture shift. Perhaps the “Growth Mindset” concept has been around as long as Confucius, as he once famously said, “It does not matter how slowly you go, so long as you do not stop.”