Having and cultivating a growth mindset is associated with many benefits (read more). While most research into growth mindsets is done with children and in educational settings some researchers have studied the growth mindset in organizational settings. Here are two examples:


heslin and vandewalle 2008Managers’ Implicit Assumptions About Personnel
Peter A. Heslin and Don VandeWalle (2008)

Abstract: Effective managers recognize both positive and negative changes in employee performance and take appropriate remedial action when required. Managers’ assumptions about the rigidity or malleability of personal attributes (e.g., ability and personality) affect their performance of these critical personnel management tasks. To the extent that managers assume that personal attributes are fixed traits that are largely stable over time, they tend to inadequately recognize actual changes in employee performance and are disinclined to coach employees regarding how to improve their performance. However, a growth-mindset intervention can lead managers to relinquish their fixed mindset and subsequently provide more accurate performance appraisals and helpful employee coaching. Implications for performance evaluation procedures and avenues for future research are outlined.


heslin and vandewalle 2009Performance Appraisal Procedural Justice: The Role of a Manager’s Implicit Person Theory

Peter A. Heslin and Don VandeWalle (2009)

Abstract: Although there is a vast literature on employee reactions to procedural injustice, little is known about the important issue of why some managers are less procedurally just than others. In this field study we found that a manager’s implicit person theory (IPT; i.e., extent of assumption that people can change) predicted employees’ perceptions of the procedural justice with which their last performance appraisal was conducted. These procedural justice perceptions in turn predicted employees’ organizational citizenship behavior, as partially mediated by their organizational commitment. This research provides an initial empirical basis for a new line of inquiry that extends existing IPT theory into the realm of perceptual, attitudinal, and behavioral responses to people as a function of their IPT. Other contributions to the IPT, performance appraisal, and procedural justice literatures are discussed.

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