Conscious Agility and Mindsets & Action

Carol Dweck‘s (@mindsetworks and @BrainologyMindset: The New Psychology of Success focuses on “the power of people’s beliefs” and how “the view you adopt for yourself profoundly affects the way you lead your life.”

Based on our experience working with clients, and Artful Transformation and Conscious Agility (with co-authors Brad Barton and Mark Ferraro), I was very intrigued! While Mindset focuses more-so on the mindset of an individual, how does one approach the mindset of a collective (group, team, organization or enterprise, etc.) — that is, many individual mindsets and their shared mindset!

Mindsets: Fixed or Growth

Mindset starts by exploring people’s abilities and suggests (based on research) that “there were two meanings to ability, not one: a fixed ability that needs to be proven, and a changeable ability that can be developed through learning.”

When you enter a mindset, you enter a new world. In one world — the world of fixed traits — success is about proving you’re smart or talented. Validating yourself. In the other — the world of changing qualities — it’s about stretching yourself to learn something new. Developing yourself.

Mindset then suggests: “You have a choice. Mindsets are just beliefs. They’re powerful beliefs, but they’re just something in your mind, and you can change your mind.”

Mindset distinguishes between a fixed mindset (“fixed traits”) and growth mindset (“changing qualities”):

Believing that your qualities are carved in stone — the fixed mindset — creates an urgency to prove yourself over and over. If you have only a certain amount of intelligence, a certain personality, and a certain moral character — well, then you’d better prove that you have a healthy dose of them. It simply wouldn’t do to look or feel deficient in these most basic characteristics.

There’s another mindset in which these traits are not simply a hand you’re dealt and have to live with, always trying to convince yourself and others that you have a royal flush when you’re secretly worried it’s a pair of tens. In this mindset, the hand you’re dealt is just the starting point for development. This growth mindset is based on the belief that your basic quality are things you can cultivate through your efforts.

Mindset summarizes the fixed mindset with a diagram created by Nigel Holmes (@nigelblue) entitled Two Mindsets:

Fixed Mindset
(Intelligence is static)

Leads to a desire to look smart and therefore a tendency to . . .

  • Challenges: . . . avoid challenges
  • Obstacles: . . . get defensive or give up easily
  • Effort: . . . see effort as fruitless or worse
  • Criticism: . . . ignore useful negative feedback
  • Success of other: . . . feel threatened by the success of others

As a result, they may plateau early and achieve less than their full potential.

Mindset summarizes the growth mindset with a diagram created by Nigel Holmes (@nigelblue) entitled Two Mindsets:

Growth Mindset
(Intelligence can be developed)

Leads to a desire to learn and therefore a tendency to . . .

  • Challenges: . . . embrace challenges
  • Obstacles: . . . persist in the face of setbacks
  • Effort: . . . see effort as the path to mastery
  • Criticism: . . . learn from criticism
  • Success of other: . . . find lessons and inspiration in the success of others

As a result, they reach ever-higher levels of achievement.

Carol Dweck explores MindsetsMindsets and Achievement, and Mindsets and Change where she identifies “FOUR simple steps to being changing your mindset”:

Step 1. Learn to hear your fixed mindset “voice.”

Step 2. Recognize that you have a choice.

Step 3. Talk back to it with a growth mindset voice.

Step 4. Take the growth mindset action.

Again, while Mindset focuses more-so on the mindset of an individual, how does one approach the mindset of a collective (group, team, organization or enterprise, etc.) — that is, many individual mindsets and their shared mindset! Conscious Agility!

Conscious Agility

Conscious Agility — which emerges from Conscious Capitalism, Business Agility, and Antifragility and our individual and collective experience fully rooted in decades of practice across many industry domains — is a design-thinking approach for business ecosystems that integrates awareness with intuition, orientation, and improvisation so that individuals and collectives may benefit from uncertainty, disorder, and the unknown.

See Conscious Agility: A Brief Introduction for more information.

Mindsets and Conscious Agility

While many who talk about mindsets quote Zig Ziglar, both Mindset and Conscious Agility focus on Being (mindset) and Doing (action).

To Do is to Be. – Friedrich Nietzsche

To Be is to Do. – Immanuel Kant

You have to Be before you can Do and Do before you can Have. – Zig Ziglar

Conscious Agility’s notion of stakeholders “being a part of an ecosystem” generally relates to Mindset’s (mindset or being, step 1, 2, and 3) and Conscious Agility’s notion of stakeholders “doing something within the ecosystem” generally relates to Mindset’s (action or doing, step 4). Furthermore, Conscious Agility stresses that “stakeholder identity is central to how stakeholders are being a part of an ecosystem and doing something within the ecosystem” and that “identity encapsulates awareness and ownership”. Conscious Agility’s notion of identity and its awareness aspect relates to Mindset’s (mindset or being, step 1, 2, and 3) and ownership aspect relates to Mindset’s (action or doing, step 4).

At a macro level, Conscious Agility’s Define phase includes Mindset’s step 1, 2, and 3; and Conscious Agility’s Create and Refine phases relates to Mindset’s step 4.

At a micro level, Conscious Agility’s Examine Experiences conversation relates to Mindset’s step 4. In the Create phase’s Enact Experiences conversation cluster and in the Refine phase’s Embrace Experiences conversation cluster, “the stakeholders’ ability to intuit, orient, and improvise is embodied and integrated in these experiences” — that is, action (doing).

At a micro level, Conscious Agility’s Refine the Canvas conversation (Create phase’s Enact Experiences conversation cluster) and Embody Canvas conversation (Refine phase’s Embrace Experiences conversation cluster) relate to Mindset’s steps 1, 2, and 3 — that is mindset (being).

At a micro level, Conscious Agility’s Organize and Refine conversation (Create phase’s Integrate Stakeholders conversation cluster) and Nurture and Refine conversation (Refine phase’s Nurture Stakeholders conversation cluster) relate to Mindset’s steps 4, 1, 2, and 3 — that is action (doing) and mindset (being).

At a “nano level,” each individual involved in a Conscious Agility journey continuously experiences Mindset’s steps 1, 2, 3, and 4.

Fundamentally, Mindset and Conscious Agility are readily aligned around core concepts and human nature — and are both discovered in practiceWhile Mindset focuses more-so on the mindset of an individual, Conscious Agility focuses on both the individual and collective (group, team, organization or enterprise, etc.)!

Highly encourage all “practitioners” in this space to visit http://www.mindsetonline.com and http://ConsciousAgility.com to learn more!

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