Growth mindset: more willing to help others in their development

New research shows that fostering a growth mindset encourages employees to help others develop.

Benefits of a growth mindset culture

Within organizations there are differing views on the developability of capabilities and properties. In a fixed mindset culture, there is mainly the belief that capabilities cannot be developed. In a growth mindset culture, there is mainly the belief that capabilities can be developed through effort. Previous research has shown that a growth mindset culture has several benefits. This is how employees experience: 
  • more trust in the organization
  • more involvement and ownership
  • feel more like their organization supports innovation
  • less unethical behavior in their organization

Mindset and collaboration

A new study from Rogers et al. (2022) looks at the relationship between mindset and employees' willingness to help others in their development. They expected that a growth mindset stimulates a willingness to help others develop. They developed the concept of a work growth mindset, a mindset that specifically targets growth opportunities at work, and conducted five experimental studies.
Study 1 (an online experiment) and Study 2 (a within-person field experiment) showed that employees helped colleagues more after participating in a growth mindset intervention. Studies 3A-C examined the mechanisms underlying this relationship and the circumstances in which growth-oriented workers help others.
These experiments showed that a work-growth mindset makes employees more focused on others and more likely to help develop vision. This effect did depend on the extent to which the opportunities to help can be seen as opportunities to develop both oneself and the other, so that both the helper and the recipient of the help can grow.


The relationship between a growth mindset and the willingness to invest in the development of others is not that surprising. When we have a growth mindset, we don't see others primarily as competitors but as people from whom we can potentially learn (and learn from us).
This research seems to be an additional indication of the value of creating growth mindset cultures. A growth mindset culture can lead to more synergy in the collaboration.