Have you read Mindset: The New Psychology of Success? I have not (yet), but leadership consultant Peter Bregman (you may have read his posts on the Harvard Business Review blog) recently posted a podcast of his discussion with author Carol Dweck about growth and fixed mindsets, and it’s worth a listen.
Those who possess a growth mindset believe that their talents and abilities can be developed, and trust that their knowledge will evolve. This is good, right? Continuous learning and self-improvement. When our behaviors and beliefs support growth, we can make connections and be more collaborative, and ultimately become more effective leaders.
The fixed mindset, “what I have is all I’ve got,” keeps us from fulfilling our potential because we are unwilling to take risks. There’s a fear of mistakes and failure, and the possibility that someone else looks (and is) smarter than we are. With a fixed mindset, we may feel safe and are able to keep our image intact, but it creates distance between us and other people. That distance prohibits us from truly engaging and growing.