High-Performance Mindset for Ambitious Leaders

High-Performance Mindset for Ambitious Leaders

A growth mindset drives motivation and achievement in any company. It's also an excellent way to approach learning positively, bringing resilience and joy to the workplace.

A growth mindset drives motivation and achievement in any company. It's also an excellent way to approach learning positively, bringing resilience and joy to the workplace.

Carol Dweck is a Stanford professor that has done a TED Talk called "The power of believing that you can improve." She is also a Harvard Business Review contributor and the author of the book "Mindset: The New Psychology of Success."

Dweck started this work with the youngest school kids, and what she became curious about is: why were there some students that weren't interested in anything but the mark they got on a test? On the other hand, other students were curious about what they got wrong and how they could still learn.

She realized some believed they could improve and get better, and that's why they stuck with it. They had a growth mindset. Meanwhile, others didn't think they could improve and just gave up.

These notions it's what she calls "the psychology of success," and she started bringing them into the workplace. The author talks about two mindsets in her book: the fixed mindset (talent is an innate trait) and the growth mindset (talent can be developed). Let's take at each one.

Fixed Mindset = I'm either good or not

When you don't approach learning by considering what is possible and believing you can, you get stuck. Here are some thoughts of those with a fixed mindset:

-Born smart.


-Demonstrating skills.

-Performing better than others.

-Feedback is a threat.

-Stretch goals are bad.


Growth Mindset = I can get better

A brain that's primed for learning generates a measurable increase in our brain activity, allowing us to: pay more attention, have the ability to rebound, and better detect our errors. Some of the benefits of a growth mindset include creativity and innovation, resilience, persistence, and better performance. Here are some thoughts of someone with a growth mindset:

-Born to learn.


-Developing skills.

-Performing better than you did before.

-Feedback helps me learn.

When we try to think about these mindsets and which one we're operating from, we can notice where we are and fix it. According to Dweck, none of us are all fixed or growth mindset; depending on the situation, we can be it's one or the other.

How To Develop a Growth Mindset?

-Try something new, take a risk, and be innovative.

-Make it a challenge.

-Break the task into smaller steps.

-Find others who can help (mentors, colleagues).

-Focus on progress over time.

-Focus on the learning as well as results.

Change your words from "I am not good at this" to "What might I learn by trying?", from "This is too hard," to "This may take some time and effort," and from "I give up" to "I'm going to try a different approach."

Applying Mindset to Your Job Search

-Making excellent job applications is a skill that can be developed.

-A positive mental attitude must be balanced with effort.

-You don't have the skills yet, but you can learn them.

-Outstanding employer research will demonstrate emotional intelligence, commitment, and self-awareness.

-If you seek to improve continuously, you will ultimately achieve.

In conclusion, it takes practice but being conscious about these two ways of thinking is the first step. Next time you catch yourself on a fixed mindset, stop those negative thoughts and, instead, recognize your skills and potential. The key to succeeding in your career is to approach the daily challenges with a learning attitude.

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