We are told as children, “you can do anything you put your mind to.” Is this statement true? The truth behind the mindset of an individual is interesting. This article will discuss the three types of mindsets, steps to evaluating your own mindset, and how to change your employees’ mindsets.
Mindset – What is it?
Your mindset is defined as, “underlying assumptions that shape a person’s ability to perceive and understand the world. “
The quote, “you can do anything you put your mind to”, refers to your mindset. Those who influence you shape your mindset. As children, it’s our parents and teachers, as adults, its your boss, or even your spouse who supports you. As an adult, though, it is harder to grow and change your mindset because we don’t have our parents or teachers constantly pushing us in the right direction.
Three types of mindsets exist
- Fixed Mindset
- Growth Mindset
- Benefit Mindset
When we are young, our fixed mindset is molded. Think about it. When you were a child, which subject did you struggle with? You often hear, “I’m not good at math.” from a student. That student will likely never become a math teacher or use the subject as the main focus of their job. Bill Gates mentions to, “validate your gifts instead of cultivating them”. This is true for the math example. That child should be told, “Just because you feel you’re not good at math, doesn’t mean you can’t become good at math.” Saying a phrase like this can help in altering the mindset and moving forward.
The growth mindset is ideal for anyone. This mindset is always focusing on improving how they do what they do. Growth mindset individuals believe that their strengths are not built on luck, rather built on effort. Reaching higher levels of achievement are done because of their hard work. They tend to love whatever their strength may be.
The benefit mindset goes beyond your personal strengths and focuses on those around you, like your place of employment. The person with the benefit mindset focuses on the why of their goal. They believe in developing their strengths, while also focusing on how to contribute to a better future for their organization. They ask their employees, “how can we come together in helping one another?” Once everyone helps everyone change their mindset, the organization will change, as well as workplace morale.
How to Evaluate your Mindset
First and foremost, let’s reiterate that luck doesn’t exist. You have to put your mind to something, and do the work for it to pay off.
To see where your mindset lies, start with looking at what holds you back. Make a list of challenges, setbacks, the criticism you have heard in the past, and your struggles. Write them down.
Use your problems as stepping stones. For example, if you had a complaint about your work, look at all the good work you have done, and grow from that. Take what you love and make it better. If there is an area you are struggling with, research it. If you don’t understand something as much as you want to, research and master it. Have someone in your life who will keep you accountable as well.
Leaders Change Employee Mindsets
As the leader, your team will suffer from a fixed mindset. First, work on your mindset. Then, when you have changed yours to the growth mindset, move toward to the benefit mindset. Of course, there will be setbacks. You will hear a complaint from your boss, personal issues can create a struggle, etc, but keep pushing forward.
For example, the NBA Sar LeBron James. His background as a child is not pretty. He had challenges, setbacks, and struggles, but continued to grow his basketball skills. He didn’t rely on his luck then, and doesn’t now, even as the top leader and player of the team. He constantly focuses on his basketball skills and leadership skills to lead the Cavs to success. His coaches helped him get there. It’s your job as a leader to change your employees to become the “LeBrons” of your institution.
When leaders lead well, their employees see it. They want to be like them and want to conform the team to do the same.
- Huddle to Know the “Why” – Gather your team together once throughout the day to give challenges and help them understand the why
- Create a List – Have your employees sit down and create their list of challenges, setbacks, criticism, and struggles. It will be eye opening for them.
- Develop the weaknesses – Take a look at your team, you can pick out the strong ones and those who are lacking in their leadership skills, but focus on them. Try to find out what’s holding them back and what you can do to move them forward to the benefit mindset.
Change is never easy, especially in mindset. Mindset is formed when we are young, so it can take time to change it for yourself and your employees. Focus on your mindset daily, see where you are struggling and go back to your list. Have your employees help one another with their struggles to become the best team your organization can produce!