How Growth Mindset Leaders Excel – Reframing Failure

How Growth Mindset Leaders Excel

Have you ever wondered how growth mindset leaders excel? In this series of four blogs we focus on an essential set of key behaviours that mark growth mindset leaders out from the crowd. In this first blog, we’ll take a closer look at how growth mindset leaders excel by reframing failure.

How Growth Mindset Leaders Excel by Reframing failure

You want your team to develop, smash their goals and excel but what happens when they fail? What do you do, for example, when mistakes are made or goals missed? We’ve probably all heard or experienced leadership horror stories, even the greats like Steve Jobs. When Jobs hired John Sculley as CEO of Apple, the last thing he expected was to be fired by Sculley less than two years later. Growth mindset leaders understand that teams can extract key data points from errors, utilising these to develop and as a consequence, reframing failure. Problem solving is key when mistakes are made . Truly great leaders appreciate that success is achieved by analysing failures then taking an adaptive approach to reach peak performance.

Key Habits for Reframing Failure

Are you a growth mindset leader when it comes to reframing failure?

  • Do your people understand the need for transparency and open dialogue when it comes to failure?
  • Do you guide your team to anticipate challenge and setback as part of their path to success?
  • Does your team readily discuss with you and each other how they navigate challenge?
  • Have you shared your own examples of learning from failure?
  • Do you encourage your team to take on new challenges and stretch themselves?
  • When you encourage your team to anticipate setbacks, do you will you overcome them?

Where Next on Your Growth Mindset Journey?

Excited to develop your leadership and growth mindset skills? We’ve got you covered with, for example:

How to Manage a Fixed Mindset at Work

how to manage a fixed mindset at work

You’re confident that you have a great team. Above all, you want to help every team member develop their knowledge, skills and abilities to the max. However, when it comes to certain challenges, you’ve noticed some of the team faltering towards a fixed mindset. How to manage a fixed mindset at work, is a question most leaders ponder at some stage of their leadership journey. We share 5 hacks to inspire your team to use their growth mindset A game for success.

Continue reading “How to Manage a Fixed Mindset at Work”

Why You Need a Strategic Mindset

Why you need a strategic mindset

What if you could work smarter not harder and still succeed? New research from psychologists at Singapore University reveals that a strategic mindset can help direct your efforts more effectively and increase success in multiple areas of life.

Your last challenge

Think about the last time you took on a challenge or set yourself an important goal. How did you tackle it? Did you dive in enthusiastically, excited to get started but without much of a plan? Maybe you spent time planning and monitoring, using review points along the way to help you work more efficiently? If you routinely plan and review, it’s likely you’re already reaping the successes of a strategic mindset. If you’re not one to spend time refining strategy, the good news is you can increase your success by learning to cultivate a strategic mindset and here’s how.

Three questions you need to ask

Lead researcher, Patricia Chen, and her team assessed strategic mindset by asking how often 860 participants utilised these strategy-eliciting questions when faced with a challenge:

  • “What can I do to help myself?”
  • “How else can I do this?”
  • “Is there a way to do this even better?”

Growth Mindset at Work regulars won’t be surprised to learn that Patricia Chen is a former student of Carol Dweck. The research was done in collaboration with psychologists at Stanford University. Although growth mindset theory has already demonstrated the importance of analysing and learning from failures to achieve success, Chen’s research is exciting because it throws a spotlight on why some people use their strategies more than others at the right time. The research showed that participants with a highly strategic mindset utilised the three questions most of the time. Higher performance was linked to the use of these questions for educational and professional goals.

Successful entrepreneurs and businesspeople routinely use a strategic mindset. Think Elon Musk’s commencement speech at the USC where he advised, “focus on signal over noise, don’t waste time on something that doesn’t make things better.” They’re experts when it comes to analysing performance, pivoting in new directions and refining ways of working to achieve progress quickly and efficiently. In other blogs, we’ve also examined how companies successfully utilise a strategic mindset approach when managing failures. Carol Dweck explains,

“There are key points in any challenging pursuit that require people to step back and come up with new strategies. A strategic mindset helps them do just that.”

Can you learn a strategic mindset?

Chen’s research found that this mindset can be taught. Chen’s team randomly assigned participants to learn about strategic mindset in a training session. They were then assigned a challenge and asked to complete it as quickly as possible. Compared to other people in the study who didn’t receive the mindset training session, the strategic mindsets learners were quicker at completing the task, practised the task more before performing it (whilst being timed) and applied more effective strategies.

Assessing your strategic mindset

You can assess your own level of strategic mindset by answering the following questions that Chen and her team used, rating your responses on a scale from 1 (never) to 5 (all the time). The higher your score, the more strategic your mindset:

  • When you are stuck on something, how often do you ask yourself: “What are things I can do to help myself?”
  • Whenever you feel like you are not making progress, how often do you ask yourself: “Is there a better way of doing this?”
  • Whenever you feel frustrated with something, how often do you ask yourself: “How can I do this better?”
  • In moments when you feel challenged, how often do you ask yourself: “What are things I can do to make myself better at this?”
  • When you are struggling with something, how often do you ask yourself: “What can I do to help myself?”
  • Whenever something feels difficult, how often do you ask yourself: “What can I do to get better at this?”

Chen and Dweck continue to research the best ways for young people and adults to adopt this strategic way of thinking. In the meantime, routinely using the above questions to analyse your performance is a great place to start.

Want to discover more about growth mindset? Try our free Introduction to Growth Mindset Course.

Growth Mindset at Work provides practical strategies and tools to take your performance to the next level. Take a deep dive into all aspects of growth mindset with us and develop your business with our consultancy, online programs or a bespoke program, delivered virtually to your team, find out more now.