Mindset Shifts for Business Success
Thom Torode, MBA, CBC, CEC
When I started down my career path to helping business owners, one of my mentors gave me the book: The Little Engine That Could “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can, I think I can!” Interesting choice as I look back, I had owned 5 different businesses was a senior manager for a fortune 500 company and had helped hundreds of people with their sales and careers by that time. In reality, he expressed later was the reminder of who I was and how I could make an impact on the mindset of others lives. It was also a reminder to teach others what even children’s characters will attest, a winning mindset is a trait to adopt. It attracts happiness, health, fulfillment and success. But what is a mindset, really?
What is Mindset?
Consider these questions:
- When faced with a new challenge do you react confidently? Do you believe that with effort, practice, & time you can succeed? Or do you question your abilities, motivation and talent?
- Do you view failure as part of the journey? Or do you avoid new challenges in order to protect yourself from potential embarrassment?
- When you are faced with setbacks and criticism, do you rethink your strategy and persevere? Or do you give up and just cut your losses?
Your answers to these questions give insight into what type of mindset you may have.
A mindset is your established set of attitudes that are based on their assumptions. These assumptions predetermine a person’s reactions to and interpretations of any event, environment or situation.
Whether positive or negative, a person’s mindset is engrained, habitual and affects all aspects of his or her professional and personal life.
Is Your Mindset Working to Your Advantage or Holding You Back?
In her book Mindset Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck identifies two general mindsets: fixed and growth.
• Talent and intelligence is static
• It’s better to avoid challenges
• It’s okay (even preferable) to quit before failure
• Effort is pointless
• Ignores useful criticism and feedback
• Views success of others as a threat
• Talent and intelligence can be developed
• Embraces challenges to grow
• Failure is an opportunity for learning
• Effort leads to mastery and success
• Uses criticism and feedback to improve
• Finds inspiration and learning from the success of others
It’s easy to tell someone to develop a growth mindset, but, if mindset is so deeply engrained, how does a person change it? Here are six ways to begin:
Six Simple Mindset Shifts to Improve Success
- Embrace failure instead of avoiding it. The faster the failure, the quicker the learning. Before starting his auto manufacturing company, Henry Ford failed at his first several businesses. What would the industrial landscape look like had he given up after his first try? Remember, embracing failure also means success can arrive that much sooner.
- Think abundance instead of scarcity. When it comes to spending money on self-improvement, many people resist due to cost. But clients and customers are attracted to people who believe in and value themselves. Instead of thinking of personal growth as an expense, think of it as an investment in your future.
- Embrace challenges. People who have a mindset of “growth” realize that challenges are just opportunities in disguise, and they choose to actively seek them out.
- Use setbacks as learning opportunities. No matter how thorough the plan, no matter how well-executed the details, obstacles will surface. Besides, who can predict with any real accuracy what setbacks will occur? Instead of wasting energy trying to prevent the unknown, why not just face obstacles as they show up?
- Don’t take it personally. Sometimes the best opportunities for personal and professional growth come from leveraging harsh criticism and negative feedback. How well do you listen to your customers’ and clients’ complaints?
- Stop re-inventing the wheel. Instead of resenting successful people for what they have accomplished, look to them to learn how they did it and turn that to your advantage. 6.5 Have an accountability person to keep you in check.
Incorporating these simple mindset shifts will go a long way to help you towards business success by building your self-confidence. Its amazing how a growth mindset “I think I can”, changed to “I know I can” coupled with strategic action can help you increase your productivity and fulfillment. Let us know how these mindset strategies work for you.
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