The empowered principal – the growth mindset

Neil Sikka explains how you can help to change your practice’s mindset.

Last month we looked at how adopting a growth mindset can help you to advance in life. Let’s expand this and consider how a growth mindset can help to grow your practice. Carol Dweck, the theorist behind ‘growth mindset’ identified five key themes to help consider how your mindset can be your weakness or your strength:

1. Challenges

Challenges are typically avoided by fixed mindset individuals who strive to appear intelligent at all times and want to avoid risks. Those with a growth mindset, on the other hand, will embrace challenges and see them as an opportunity to learn.

Consider this in the context of CQC regulations. The practice that embraces the CQC, sees it as an opportunity to develop and to improve their processes, will be more likely to take on new information and to succeed as a result. The practice that has a fixed mindset will see this as an opportunity to fail and will be likely to avoid focusing time on this area.

2. Obstacles

Every business faces obstacles at times, and the fixed mindset individual may see these as a reason to give up on their plans, thinking that they cannot be overcome. The growth mindset allows the practice to persist, even in the face of difficulties along the way, and allows the practice to advance above others.

‘Success consists of going from failure to failure with lots of enthusiasm’ – Sir Winston Churchill.

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3. Effort

Any practice owner knows that a huge effort from across the practice team goes into running the business. The attitude towards this effort can greatly affect how much is applied.

The fixed mindset sees effort as fruitless, whereas the growth mindset recognises effort as a path to mastery. Encouraging your team that their efforts will be rewarded rather than ignored can help the practice to grow.

‘When you see success as a journey you are less likely to think you have arrived,’ – Sir Alex Ferguson.

4. Criticism

Criticism can be an opportunity to learn and grow, as the growth mindset would encourage, but many fixed mindset individuals see criticism as negative and ignore comments.

‘It is fine to celebrate success but is more important to heed the lessons of failure,’ – Bill Gates.

Teaching your practice to see criticism as an opportunity to learn and to reach their potential can enable your team to reach new levels of success.

Success of others

Success of others can be an opportunity to feel our success is not worthy at times, but the growth mindset recognises this as an opening to move to the next level and grow.

Perhaps a new practice opens around the corner, which seems to be very busy. Consider what they are doing to attract new patients. Perhaps they are using online booking or have a great introductory package price for new patients. Is there anything you can learn from them to advance your practice and see this as a positive?

You can see the potential for your mindset to enable your practice to succeed and grow. We’ve seen how the growth mindset can help you to grow personally, now take time to share the concept with your practice and help them to see that: ‘The view you adopt of yourself profoundly affects the way you lead your life’ – Carol Dweck.

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