Fixed vs. Growth Mindset


B2B Demand Generation| Do you use a Fixed or Growth Mindset?

In reading the New York Times best seller Switch – How to Change Things When Change is Hard, I read about a fascinating concept I wish to share with the readers here. Fixed Mindset vs Growth Mindset.

Do these comments sound familiar?

  1. “He’s not a very good salesperson”
  2. “She’s one of the worst managers I’ve ever seen.”
  3. “He’s not a very smart kid.”

Notice that each of those focus on a label – not good, worst, dumb. Those are examples of the Fixed Mindset. A person IS this or that. They cannot change.

On the other hand, the Growth Mindset believes that the brain is a muscle. As a muscle, it can be exercised and grow. Hard work and study is like a workout at a gym. The brain grows and adapts. (I’m a big believer in self-improvement and continual learning.)

The book shared the story of a teacher who used an interesting approach to “dumb kids.” She gave grades of A, B, C and NY (not yet). That way no one was labeled a failure. The kids responded and grades improved dramatically.

To show how a growth mindset works, let’s take the comments above and put them in a growth mindset.

  1. “He’s not a very good salesperson today, but I bet if he really works on it, he could be a great one.”
  2. “She does have some management challenges, but she could become a great manager soon by working to learn new approaches.”
  3. “His grades have not been great, but he’s really studying hard and I think we’ll see great improvement soon.”

See the difference? Each one can work and improve.

The fixed mindset is a rampant problem in business. Leaders label employees. Recruiters label candidates. In my extensive career, I’ve never been asked about a growth mindset – though I believe the best leaders exhibit a growth mindset.

Do most people have Fixed or Growth Mindsets?

What do you think? Do you hear a lot of fixed mindset words, such as “He or she is this or that?” I’d love to see a healthy debate.

What do you think? We love comments and people who share.

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Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is President of the B2B lead generation consultancy, Find New Customers and his company helps businesses design and deploy world class lead nurturing and scoring programs.

To learn about Jeff, please click Who is the Fearless Competitor?

Find New Customers helps companies (with between 150 and 5,000 employees who sell complex products to businesses) to implement world-class lead generation programs. As companies struggle to create quality sales opportunities, they turn to lead generation companies like Find New Customers.

Find New Customers can certainly help your business dramatically improve the flow of sales-ready leads to salespeople.” Paul Dunay, Buzz Marketing for Technology.

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