Carol Dweck, a professor from Stanford University, did research on fixed and growth mindsets which totally transformed the way trainers motivate students and employees.
People who have a fixed mindset believe that their abilities are fixed and cannot be enhanced, while people with a growth mindset believe that they can stretch their limits to improve and learn. Someone who has a fixed mindset will take constructive feedback as a personal attack, while when someone who has a growth mindset receives constructive feedback, he will take it positively and will improve it.
How mindsets impact the workplace
Gone are the days when no one knew about mindset assessment. Now, companies invest times in hiring people with growth mindsets and do ongoing assessments to make sure employees have a growth mindset. A growth mindset can make workers better team players.
Employees who have a growth mindset, are:
- Highly motivated to learn and perform a difficult task
- Take feedback critically
- Learn new and complex skills
- Adapt different behaviour and attitudes
- Willing to help others build new skills
So, let’s discuss a few ways you can promote a growth mindset in your company.
Coach with a growth mindset
You need to look closely and observe whether your company promotes a growth mindset or not. For instance, organizations who encourage a growth mindset to reward their star employees. This also encourages other workers to work harder. They also divide teams into top-performing and low performing teams.
Make certain that people in your company can identify employees with a growth mindset. You want the team leads and managers to apply a growth mindset which helps workers grow and expand skills.
Today, the average life of a skill is five years. After five years, it is likely to go obsolete or become trivial. So, people with a fixed mindset will fall behind. Those with a fixed mindset are more likely to fall behind.
There are some people who feel like they are not good enough to learn new skills. As a leader, you should enhance their self-belief and self-confidence so they can expand their skillset. After all, all this will eventually contribute to the success of your company.
Set goals which force them to stretch
Setting easy and simple goals for your workers will never take them out of their comfort zones. As a leader, you have to push them to get out of their shell and learn new skills. Many pieces of research show that people who have a fixed mindset only care about their performance. So, they only set performance goals ignoring development goals. People with a growth mindset focus on both.
Encourage debates and feedback
Praising and appreciation go a long way. It keeps employees happy and motivates others to perform well. However, you should closely observe how people appreciate one another and appreciations and rewards are given fairly.
Many managers give feedback depending on the efforts they saw not on the tendency of the employee. Also, teams should exchange positive feedback so they can learn from each other. When employees get continuous feedback on their performance and behaviour, they will be able to improve their shortcoming and weaknesses.
Moreover, debates help team members attain incredible teamwork as they share ideas and discuss different tasks. Constructive conflicts are also important as the build trust between employees and make them more committed.
As you instil a growth mindset in your employees, you will see your employees happily exchanging feedback and providing each other with constructive criticism.
Focus on collective results
People who have a fixed mindset focus on their own results ignoring the performance of the team. As a leader, you should encourage your employees to focus on collective results. Just like sports, the scoreboard shows the collective results. If the team loses, everyone loses no matter how incredible an individual’s performance was.
Develop creative and innovative online performance management system which focuses on collective team results. You should also ensure that the managers provide continuous feedback to the employees on their performance.