The Power of ‘Not YET!’

Accountability Growth mindset


Key Point: We are intentionally recruiting and selecting people with a growth mindset. I am so attracted to the work of Stanford psychologist and author Carol Dweck. Please give yourself the gift of learning for 10 minutes by watching her Ted Talk: “The Power Of Believing That You Can Improve.”

In Dr. Dweck’s presentation, she explains “the Power of YET” and describes research studies about how 10-year-old children coped with learning challenges: 

“So I gave 10-year-olds problems that were slightly too hard for them. Some of them reacted in a shockingly positive way. They said things like, “I love a challenge,” or, “You know, I was hoping this would be informative.” They understood that their abilities could be developed. They had what I call a growth mindset. But other students felt it was tragic, catastrophic. From their more fixed mindset perspective, their intelligence had been up for judgment and they failed. Instead of luxuriating in the power of yet, they were gripped in the tyranny of now.

So what do they do next? I’ll tell you what they do next. In one study, they told us they would probably cheat the next time instead of studying more if they failed a test. In another study, after a failure, they looked for someone who did worse than they did so they could feel really good about themselves. And in study after study, they have run from difficulty.” 

Of course adults behave the same way. If we have a Growth Mindset, we can see difficulties as a challenge to overcome and learn from. Our brain literally fires up, and we engage. If we are locked into a Fixed Mindset, we often feel hooped; that things can’t change. Or perhaps worse, we lose the spirit of self-accountability and blame or look to others to change things. Often we lean on that phantom pronoun of an excuse: “They.” If we challenge ourselves with a Growth Mindset, we run right over a fear of failure and believe with perseverance and resilience it’s a matter of… YET!

Character Moves: 

  1. Every time you hear a voice saying “You are not______.” Add YET: “I am not ______ YET.”
  1. Celebrate and encourage people to put themselves out there, skin their knees, and do what they can to move forward. “Everything is a process and the process is everything.” Remember this principle applies to growing and improving too! 

Not ____ Yet in the Triangle,


One Millennial View: Maybe Millennials can largely be viewed as the “10-year-olds” of the working world. In a lot of ways, we love a challenge and informative problems that promote the opportunity for our own growth. Of course, this can depend on who’s conducting the field study. There are certainly higher ups who could potentially intimidate us into a fixed mindset. But we hope we’re dealing with leaders that let us take on the challenges, bounce ideas around, learn, (fail sometimes), and ultimately grow. After all, if we find ourselves in an organization where we can’t, it’s because we just haven’t found that position YET. 

– Garrett

Edited and published by Garrett Rubis