“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.”
- T.S. Eliot
Many leaders aspire to grow their businesses, but in fact it’s a goal that most find difficult to achieve. According to McKinsey & Company only one in eight companies grew their revenues more than 10% in the decade between 2010 and 2019, and 25% of companies didn’t grow at all. Delivering sustained, profitable growth—even in a downturn—is possible but it comes down to “choice”.
When a business leader chooses growth, that choice begins to shape their behaviour, risk appetite, and investment decisions, creating a growth mindset across the whole organisation.
What is a growth mindset?
A growth mindset is a belief that your efforts and those of other people will lead to success in business. It does not matter if this path is an “uphill battle” or a” downhill sprint.” A growth mindset encourages you to overcome obstacles and view setbacks as opportunities.
How does a leader create and nurture a growth mindset?
The most effective leaders all have a growth mindset to keep up with the demands of our rapidly changing world. Here are some practices and beliefs you can adopt to create and nurture a growth mindset for yourself, and your team.
- Embrace change
For a leader with a growth mindset, change means opportunities to open doors, develop new skills, and gather knowledge. Growing comfortable with change nurtures courage, the willingness to take risks, resilience, and maturity.
In business change is inevitable, by embracing change, you become adaptable, more capable of handling whatever life throws at you. The best kind of change comes when you envision, initiate and control it.
- Reflect On Failure
Failure is inevitable when it comes to running a business. Leaders that learn from their mistakes and add these lessons into their personal toolkit are better equipped to continually push the boundaries of their own growth and that of their teams.
It’s also important to create a culture in your company where failure is recognised as a learning tool. This way, your team will be encouraged to grow and take innovative risks.
- Cultivate Resiliency
It is important to be prepared for difficult times and prepare you and your team for failures. Many people often tend to forget that they need to be resilient in tough situations. This is especially true in the business world where many businesses try to use technology such as email to avoid the problems caused by actually interacting with people. Therefore, if you are to be successful in the business world, you need to be willing to face conflict and use negotiation skills to solve problems.
- Anticipate Risk
To grow your business successfully, it is imperative that you are willing to take calculated risks and that you are prepared to deal with the outcome, be that the success or the failure.
There are a lot of horror stories about failed businesses, however, when asked what they learned from their failures, their leaders will say that they learned to grow their businesses and to grow as a person. If you want to grow your business and make it successful, you must have the ability to think big.
- Know your customers
Most business leaders believe they put the customer first. But the truth is that the pressures of leading a large business—shareholder relations, risk management, and so on—mean that the customer too often becomes an afterthought. Growth leaders are resolute, however, in putting the customer at the centre of all their decisions which is why thy invest heavily in customer insights and analytics. Growth leaders are willing to go the extra mile by embracing design thinking and taking the time to build empathy with the customer.
The right mindset for success
To lead your business to growth, you as their leader must first exemplify the right mindset for success. When you consciously adopt the practices and beliefs of a growth mindset, you will open new doors of possibilities without being held back by the fear of failure.