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What is the mindset of a high impact leader?

After working with leaders for over 20 years, I have a lot to say about mindset and how it shapes the effectiveness of high-impact leaders.

By definition, your mindset is your beliefs. 

Let’s look at how your mindset—or beliefs—impact your relationships.

I was talking to a coaching client last week, and he said to me, “Vanessa, this colleague that I work with is useless. She just doesn’t have the ability to do her job.”

As soon as he made this comment, I knew I was hearing a “fixed” mindset.  

When you have a fixed mindset, you believe that a person or situation is set in stone. For example, my client believed that his colleague’s skills were set in stone…that she was useless. 

Now, obviously, his colleague is far from useless. In fact, I have worked with this organization for over six years, and I know that they hire very intelligent, competent people. 

So, the next step was to show my client how to shift his beliefs to a growth mindset. 

When you have a growth mindset, you believe that nothing is set in stone. 

High impact leaders all leverage a growth mindset the majority of the time.

Shift your fixed mindset to a growth mindsetThe truth is, we can all be fixed about certain areas in our life. So, in these situations, you need to NOTICE where you have a fixed mindset and SHIFT to a growth mindset.

Here are some common fixed mindset beliefs:

  1. This person is wrong, and I am right.
  2. I’m not going to try that new thing because I am bad at it.
  3. That person who gave me feedback is so critical and just wants to attack my character.
  4. Why did I make that mistake? I’m an idiot!

To be a high-impact leader, you need to work on developing a “growth” mindset.

As an example, here is how to shift the above phrases to a growth mindset perspective:

  1. We have different opinions, and that is okay. Let’s work at understanding and appreciating each other’s points of view.
  2. I’m not yet good at that new task. I’ll keep practicing so I can improve over time.
  3. Feedback is always an opportunity for me to grow. Based on this feedback, what is one thing that I can do to improve?  
  4. It sucks that I made that mistake…but what can I learn from it?

Is there one area in your life where you currently have a fixed mindset? 

How can you shift that perspective to a growth mindset?

Making that shift will feel empowering. 

Try it!

And check out my FREE guidebook to learn more about how crucial your mindset is to you as a leader.

Vanessa Judelman

Vanessa Judelman is an author, coach, and sought-after leadership expert. Over the past 20 years, she has created a proven formula to develop results-oriented leaders who feel empowered and confident in their job. Vanessa is the author of Mastering Leadership: What It Takes to Lead in Today’s Fast-Paced World. Order your copy here.

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