“Attitude is the little thing that makes a big difference.” — Winston Churchill
Growing up, you were probably given the old maxim, “If at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again.” Whoever taught you this was probably trying to instill persistence into your young self. They were also trying to coach a proper mindset, which is vital to real success in life and business.
Dr. Carol Dweck, a Stanford psychologist, delved deep into the concept of ‘mindset’ in her 2006 book appropriately called Mindset. She concludes that what you believe about and see in yourself and others — or your Mindset — significantly contributes to your long-term success.
Based on decades of research, Dweck suggests there are two types of mindsets a person can have: a fixed mindset, and a growth mindset.
A Fixed Mindset:
- Believes intelligence and talent is something you do or do not have
- Believes effort is pointless
- Believes someone’s failure defines them
- Covers up flaws
- Runs away from challenges
- Disregards feedback — views it as negative criticism
- Feels threatened by the success of others
Dr. Dweck describes a fixed mindset like this:
“People [who have a fixed mindset] have one consuming goal of proving themselves. Every situation calls for a confirmation of their intelligence, personality, or character. Every situation is evaluated: Will I succeed or fail? Will I look smart or dumb? Will I be accepted or rejected?”
Fear is a motivator behind this Mindset. Valuable time is wasted benchmarking success and talent rather than developing it.
“Growth mindsets, on the other hand, result in hunger for learning, says Dweck. When [they] try and fail, they tend not to view it as failure or disappointment, but instead as a learning experience.”
A Growth Mindset:
- Believes intelligence and talent develop and grow over time
- Believes effort and undertaking are part of the journey to mastery
- Trusts that mistakes are part of learning
- Sees failures as opportunistic and temporary
- Welcomes change, challenges, and feedback
- Is inspired by the success of others
- Is resilient in the face of setbacks and persists against all the odds — remember, try, try again?
- It is service-oriented, adaptable, visionary, and accountable to others.
A growth mindset is not about believing you are something you’re not. After all, a 5’0″ fully grown adult will never become 6’2″ by merely believing they will grow taller.
But it is about believing that you can live up to your full potential. The thing is — this potential is limitless. There is no cap to potential growth.
Where Do You Fit?
So, what about you? How do you see yourself and the challenges that arise in your company?
- Do you view problems as something insurmountable or as something possible? As a hindrance to your success or a challenge to grow through?
- Do you believe that you can tackle the problem? Or do you expect it to tackle you?
- Do you allow failure to define you? Or to push you into greater things?
Tips for Developing a Proper Mindset:
- Recognize your need for change: Plant, cultivate, and harvest a growth mindset by realizing your own need for change. Take time to determine what has led you to this wrong mindset. What experiences have shaped your thought patterns and ideologies? Recognizing your own need is the first step in the journey of mindset growth. You cannot grow if you’re not willing.
- Identify your why:Why is it that you want to cultivate a different mindset? What long term goals do you have? What are your limitless, potential-laden dreams? What motivates you? (Once you find your why, write it down by hand and keep it in a nearby place to help keep you on track.)
- Watch your self-talk: How are you talking to yourself? Are you telling yourself that you can’t? Stop the negative self-coaching and take a cue from the little engine that could. Empower yourself by saying, “I can.”
- Build your A-Team: Surround yourself with people who have also chosen a growth mindset and follow their lead. Model yourself after successful people who embody the mindsets you also want to exhibit.
- Push yourself: Push yourself out of your comfort zones and into challenges you know will grow you and your company. It may be painful. It may be uncomfortable — but that’s the point. No one ever grows by staying in their safe places.
- Build habits to support your new mindset: Incorporate powerful habits to promote a growth mindset. Set yourself up for success with tools that incorporate the positive ways you think in practical ways.
We believe in your success. That’s why Hamilton Connections focuses on placing the right people with the right people. The right talent and the right mindsets go into your company — benefiting both you and the candidates you hire. That’s why we call ourselves placement professionals. Questions? Looking for new candidates? Contact us today! We look forward to pointing you in the right direction!