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Growth Mindset and Early Career Talent: Delivering Benefits Now and Into the Future

12 minute read
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Creating and encouraging growth mindset – one of our seven future skills for early talent in 2023 – in all of your new graduates will lead to both short and long term benefits for the company as well as for the individual. Development Beyond Learning’s growth mindset module encourages your future leaders to accept, and even welcome, challenges that come their way, to learn from mistakes and to foster a can-do attitude that will start to permeate right across your organisation in the coming years.

There’s a marked difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset, and that’s why the latter should be a high priority for anyone who hires, trains and develops emerging talent in the workplace. A fixed mindset, one that’s geared towards resisting change, implies that an individual is a completed character that doesn’t require any improvement, whereas the growth variant enables and empowers that person to embrace and welcome new developmental initiatives.

In the business world, irrespective of which industry sector you happen to work in, standing still is rarely the best option. Development is crucial, for everything from IT systems and communications processes to management practices and client relationships. If you’re a senior manager, you’ll no doubt already know that your own personal mindset, skills and accreditations really should never be seen as anything but works in progress. Your organisation will always benefit from progression in all forms.

For HR Managers, Talent Managers, CEOs, departmental heads and many more, it’s so important to instil the crucial nature of development in everyone associated with the company. This of course also applies to newcomers. Graduate intakes will vary from business to business, but the advantages brought by learning and development remain the same from one sector to any other. For many of the world’s largest and most successful corporations, nurturing talent is non-negotiable.

Shaping the leaders of the next generation

The most obvious benefit to the company will of course be the ready availability of well-developed graduates with a solid understanding of how best they can grow. But there’s far more to it than obtaining and nurturing early career expertise. These individuals can be future leaders who can inspire the teams of tomorrow, and by identifying and developing their talents the company can increase the chances of holding on to them. Loyalty, often a severely underestimated quality, deserves to be of paramount importance to those charged with creating blueprints for ongoing success.

For the individual graduates, there are few things better than knowing that their employers have faith in their abilities. Investing in that person’s talents in the early stages of their employment speaks volumes for the company culture. By encouraging development right from the start, the employer is making a bold statement about the importance of a growth mindset. Both consciously and sub-consciously, these men and women are already being told that they matter.

And although this is brought home to employees at the beginning of their work journey, there are many ways in which senior management can continue to encourage an ongoing growth mindset. Graduate training providers are supplying the building blocks for rewarding and successful careers, but it’s the directors and managers who allow for the moulding process to continue. One of the more vital aspects of growth mindset is that it shouldn’t really be seen as a final destination.

So many advantages to be gained

In many ways, the most beneficial aspect of growth mindset is in relation to the changes that are brought to the individual’s attitudes and perceptions. These are plus points that, if introduced in the right way by skilled graduate development providers, will result in continuing, evolutionary self-improvement for a whole career. Key to these changes will be the likes of:

These are just some examples of a much bigger picture. The growth mindset workshop from Development Beyond Learning is geared towards developing already talented individuals and giving them an outlook that is fully focused on what they can do, as opposed to what they can’t. If the graduates are of the right calibre in the first place, and prove to be malleable enough, this process can represent the moulding of a mindset that was already partially formed.

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At Development Beyond Learning, we have a powerful network of skilled learning providers who create workshops that are more than just beneficial. These enjoyable, ready-to-run modules focus on a development experience that embraces all the basic tenets of growth mindset, and that encourages the notion that meaningful improvement on a regular basis is an achievable goal for all attendees. They are key to early career talent development.

Add in the fact that there are more than a hundred modules to choose from, and you’ll understand why Development Beyond Learning offers so much more than graduate training courses via first class trainers. For many of our clients, customised programs can be created in order to complement the company training syllabus. In time, every graduate intake will have been exposed to a bespoke series of learning strategies that will dovetail perfectly with the ethos of the company.

Turning loyalty into a major benefit

Another powerful benefit to the company is the enhanced loyalty that comes from making an investment on a graduate’s career development. New intakes will be able to see that the employer has a strong interest in their career paths, and that this action is taken because senior management understands that each of these individuals has the potential to succeed. That added loyalty can be extremely valuable to a company that no longer has to spend as much time and money on recruitment.

Of course, the more valued an individual feels, the more he or she is likely to be happy in their chosen role. The benefits to the overall morale of the workplace will be clear, but there is far more to it than that. Greater job satisfaction inevitably leads to better performance and heightened levels of productivity, so increasing future skills via high quality learning courses is crucial to employers both now and into the future.

Establishing growth mindset in an individual can cover a number of important factors, but chief among them is likely to be the ability to face up to challenges head-on. And a crucial sub-factor in that is the need to accept that mistakes can and will happen. In the past, an error could lead to an individual shrinking away from difficult scenarios from then on, but with a strong growth mindset the next challenge should be eagerly awaited. Constructive criticism can therefore be viewed as an energising and empowering force.

Falling off the horse, then getting back on

A good example of this is the way you might approach a particularly difficult crossword puzzle. If you give up on your efforts, there’s nothing wrong with that at all. If you decide never to try another crossword again, however, you’re displaying the qualities of a somewhat fixed mindset. If you have an active growth mindset, at some point you’ll want to try another puzzle, one that’s at least as difficult as the previous one, maybe even one that’s a little tougher. In this instance, it’s not the falling down that was important, it was the getting back up again.

Thanks to the far-reaching nature of virtual learning, Development Beyond Learning provides exceptional development programmes for corporations across the globe. From Sydney to Singapore and Manchester to Melbourne, companies in a wide variety of industry sectors – including finance, engineering, mining and many more – are able to tap into a powerful resource that can offer tangible benefits. Running alongside existing in-house training programs, we provide a superb personal development journey for all delegates.

In the past, many organisations have suffered from an almost indiscernible cynicism and apathy of an existing workforce, and it’s been all too easy for this to pervade the whole company. By instilling more can-do mindsets in an annual graduate intake, HR and Talent Managers can start to change the company culture in a more positive way. In a relatively short space of time, that new approach can fan out across the whole structure.

Holding on to the talented is a must

Over the past decade or so, many companies have noticed a change in the demands of new recruits. Applicants often have more choice when choosing a new role, and as a result those employers have had to rethink what they have to offer. The days when an HR department simply posted vacancies online and waited for the rush are long gone now. Does your company do enough to attract the leaders of the future? And does it do enough to keep them?

It perhaps goes without saying that the key to attracting the top talent lies in offering a rewarding job and an environment that encourages progress. By providing highly enjoyable courses that not only improve the individual’s skills but also develop them into a better human being, the company will soon have a reputation for being a great one to work for. The transformation in the organisation’s perception within the graduate community will be both impressive and beneficial. This, in turn, can then help to attract the best of the best in the ensuing years.

The flavour of our training and development modules focuses on the needs of the client, and that’s why we work with them throughout the entire journey. For HR and Talent Managers in all companies, it’s reassuring to know that our graduate learning programs can be tailored to their specific requirements. There is no one size fits all with this, and nor should there be.

Choosing development modules that dovetail with your needs

Having a hand in the design of a development program, senior managers can ensure their schedules are in line not only with the graduates’ training requirements but also with the overarching ethos of the corporation itself. That way, the leaders of tomorrow will be open to the relevant company values from the very beginnings of their careers. Developing the corporate message then gets easier as every year goes by.

In the future, the organisation will then have a talent pool that will make internal management recruitment more relevant. As any HR Manager will already know, recruiting senior staff members from outside sources can be lengthy, complicated and expensive, so investment now in graduate learning from Development Beyond Learning can reap significant future rewards. And with a strong growth mindset developed during their graduate training, these managers of tomorrow will be well-equipped to bring more success along the way.

When it comes to creating and nurturing a growth mindset in any individual, it’s important for skilled learning providers to be able to recognise areas of strength and weakness in that person. This is one of the reasons why skilled, experienced specialists are so in demand. The experts at Development Beyond Learning are adept at quickly identifying qualities in every individual, and as a result will know how to establish the tailored encouragement that’s needed.

Growth Mindset – the learning module YOUR organisation needs

Our highly regarded growth mindset module is based on the knowledge that the key to future success of the individual often lies in the way they respond to challenges. This module demonstrates that we all have the capacity to apply an optimal ‘growth’ mindset if we consciously choose more helpful, positive beliefs – and therefore behaviours.

By the end of the module, your graduates will be able to:

  • Identify current position on the mindset spectrum

  • Describe key characteristics of fixed and growth mindsets

  • Explain how brain neuroplasticity supports a growth mindset

  • Outline the connection between beliefs, action and growth

  • Apply a growth mindset to deal with challenges in the workplace

Thanks to Development Beyond Learning, participants will feel a sense of empowerment that comes from knowing how to respond to what were once difficult situations:

  • Review the situations when fixed-mindset triggers and notice reactions to these triggers

  • Apply a growth mindset to negative self-beliefs to reframe each of them into a more positive statement

  • Commit to seeing the problem and the process of solving it as an opportunity to learn, develop and get better

The importance of a growth mindset is reflected in the fact that it’s one of Development Beyond Learning’s seven future skills for early talent, along with curiosity, critical thinking, hybrid collaboration, managing up, owning your belonging and purpose. A recent Better Buys survey showed that 92% of employees place high importance on access to professional development, so it’s all too apparent that our modules have a crucial role to play in the future of the global business scene.

Benefits now, benefits tomorrow, benefits forever

Within a relatively short space of time, the main principles of growth mindset will be incorporated across the whole company. A graduate intake of today will have adopted these techniques and will go on to permeate their ideas and attitudes into all departments and all locations within the corporation. It’s easy to see why there are short-term benefits to changing the overall outlook of new intakes, but it’s also important to understand how it will affect the company in later years.

Whether your graduate intake consists of ten individuals or a hundred or more, you’ll already know how important it is for these men and women to hit the ground running. Exposing your intake to the right type of developmental learning will make it so much easier for them to fully grasp the principles of the company, and to get quickly up to speed with what’s required of them. The assimilation process, so often too slow and too sluggish in the past, can be fast, relevant, practical and extremely rewarding for all concerned.

More and more senior managers and top-level recruiters are insisting on a growth mindset for new intakes, and there are plenty of good reasons to do so. One is linked to the fact that the workplace is a constantly changing environment these days. Business models evolve, technology improves, systems develop. If the work we do doesn’t stay the same anymore, why should we? The skills set you currently have may well bear little resemblance to the one you’re going to need in ten years from now, maybe even five years. It’s worth noting that a report by Dell Technologies claimed that 85% of jobs that will exist in 2030 are yet to be invented. A growth mindset gives the individual the building blocks needed to accept, and even to welcome, the changes that are inevitably coming their way.

Making special people FEEL special

It’s important, too, for members of the senior management team to understand how their new graduates come to terms with their new surroundings, and with the expectations they carry. It’s not easy to make your mark with any new role, of course, especially when you’re fresh from university. Graduate training programs provide the perfect environment for more than just learning; they also enable individuals to build character.

There’s something very rewarding for HR and Talent Managers to see their graduates develop quickly and positively, and this can earmark certain individuals for a more elite career path, one that may only be suitable for a small number. It’s rare for relative newcomers to be offered a fast-track route to a more advanced position, but if someone has been identified as suitable for such a progression, then the learning modules can help that talent to stand out.

We all like to think we know what’s best for newcomers, and how we can make them feel valued in the workplace, but there’s a chance that sometimes we won’t have a sufficiently empathetic understanding for the transition that graduates have to go through. Making them feel comfortable and confident as quickly as possible will inevitably be seen by your intake as a significant step towards a happy, productive future, and learning programs provide a great way to enhance that sense of belonging. In Development Beyond Learning’s courses, there’s a strong emphasis on making them as enjoyable as they are educational.

Development Beyond Learning has been utilising the principles of behavioural science to nurture and develop graduate intakes for many of the business world’s major hitters for more than 15 years, and we continue to set the highest standards. If your organisation isn’t providing bespoke learning modules for your employees, or you possibly need to enhance or supplement your existing in-house programs, you should be contacting our team right now. To find out more, get in touch today. We look forward to hearing from you.

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