The Right Type of Mindset at Work (And in Life Too)
Business | 22 May 2019
Nature vs. Nurture
It is easy to point at the achievements of exceptional people and say that their success is due to natural talent. After all, it seems highly unlikely that Einstein was able to revolutionise a field with below-average intelligence, right? The same could be said for the best basketball player of all time. Would Michael Jordan have been able to produce such extraordinary gameplay championship after championship without his inherent gift for basketball?
Clearly, the answer is “No”. Without their natural talent, it appears almost impossible for these remarkable people in any field to be outstanding. However, it is crucial, be it in business or life, to recognise that talent alone is not enough. It takes an unimaginable amount of talent and hard work to be great in any area.
Fixed Mindset vs. Growth Mindset
Even though many of us are not naturally gifted, and chances are we would not become the greatest at our craft, we can definitely improve by coming to terms that we can influence over our skills and abilities. Dr Carol S. Dweck, a psychologist on the faculty at Stanford University, points out that humans have two core types of mindset. People with a fixed mindset believe that intelligence is permanently static with little to no room for change, whereas people with a growth mindset believe that intelligence can be improved.
Despite the fact that the benefits of cultivating a growth mindset are clearly desirable, we tend to recede to our individual fixed-mindset triggers. When we face challenges, receive criticism or fare poorly compared with others, it becomes tempting to fall back on our insecurities such as “We’re naturally weak in numbers.” Our innate talent (or lack thereof) stealthily creeps and morphs into a safety net that serves us as an awkward social justification. We know that it is a response that inhibits growth, yet we still continue to be prisoners of our own jail cells.
Praise The Process, Not The Prize
Sure, it is fantastic to praise the prize. But, what do we do when our limitations are met? Things will seem insurmountable. There will be setbacks, heartaches, and failures. There will be a point where it seems like everything and everyone is raining on our parade. This is where a growth mindset steps into the picture. Praise the process, not the prize. Human qualities, such as creativity and even relational capacities like understanding, can be cultivated, changed and grown through deliberate practice and experience.
Someone with a growth mindset embodies the notion that we can be disappointed by failure, but we should never be discouraged by it. It is not the case that we are not good at something, and this aspect of our character is set in stone. Rather, it is simply the case that we are not good at it yet.
Strategy And Techniques For Companies To Cultivate Growth Mindset
Generally, most people lie on the continuum of a fixed and growth mindset. This indicates that it is advantageous for companies to cultivate an environment to further foster a growth mindset. The strategy is to highlight that failure is not fatal, but the lack of courage to continue learning is. An inevitable part of growth is failure, but what is within control is how we deal with it. The technique is to provide relevant support, such as training workshops and apprenticeships, for employees to learn new skills they need.
Once employees are comfortable with their newfound acquisition, they can work alongside with different departments. They can learn other roles to help encourage new ways of approaching things. Furthermore, companies can create systems to promote alternative views and constructive criticisms. Employees can play devil’s advocates and take on opposing viewpoints in safe settings to wage productive debates.
Harvard Business Review has shown that when companies embrace a growth mindset, their employees report feeling far more empowered and committed. They also receive constant organisational support for collaboration and innovation. No doubt, it is hard work. Culture takes years to create and years to change. Once employees start to fine-tune the internal monologue of a growth mindset that underpins every aspect of their lives, from leadership to love, they will be filled with a richer sense of who they are, what they stand for and how the can move forward. More often than not, when an individual grows in a company, the company grows too.
Employee Welfare and Benefits
Other than providing the necessary resources to nurture a growth mindset, companies should also ensure that their employees’ welfare is thoroughly satisfied at work. We’re not referring so much to company-sponsored lunches and sleeping pods but, actual employee benefits. As the first Insurtech company to digitise Employee Benefits, PolicyPal offers a one-stop solution for a business to buy, manage and claim all on a single platform.
Simply visit PolicyPal Business, enter your company email address, click on ‘Get Quote’ and customise the best plan based on your business profile.