Leaning into Growth – The Importance of Mindset in Guiding Your Company to the Next Level

Written by Carol Coughlin. Posted in Business Leadership

For CEOs and leadership teams seeking to significantly increase the profitability, sustainability and value of their organizations, putting time and resources against developing a strong growth strategy is usually deemed to be one of the most – if not the most – critical undertakings and investments a company can make annually.

But what’s often undervalued is the role mindset plays in determining how much growth is possible for an organization, as well as its role in ensuring a wiser, bolder and more strategic path to growth.

In fact, mindset influences not only how leadership generally views growth, but also how much and how tenaciously the leadership team leans into growth – despite the anxiety, stress and inevitable roadblocks that will always arise when a company is on a growth course.

So one of the things I wanted to look into more deeply was how today’s strongest and most innovative leaders approach growth. In particular, how much value they place on mindset and the act of leaning into growth as predictors of success, as well as the weight they assign to these factors as opposed to other key variables that influence the outcome.

It makes logical sense that achieving the next level of growth requires change. This harkens back to Executive Coach Marshall Goldsmith’s 2007 book, What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful, in which he suggests that reaching new levels of personal success, by definition, requires new behaviors.

While Goldsmith’s advice focuses on changing habits, Jeremie Kubicek, co-founder of GiANT, suggests that for organizations to grow to the next level, leaders need to adopt next-level thinking.

Kubicek explains that, in the simplest terms, next-level thinking is the difference between “should” and “could” thinking. He suggests:

CEOs who are good thinkers ask, “What should our goals be for 2018?” While CEOs who are next-level thinkers ask, “What could our goals be for 2018?”

While this is a seemingly small change in mindset, it can have a monumental impact on helping leaders lean into growth more fully, develop more innovative growth strategies and adopt and execute high-reward ventures with more confidence.

In fact, Kubicek finds making the shift from “should” to “could” especially effective when applied to goals requiring large investments – the type of expenditures that typically cause greater anxiety and, therefore, often result in what might have been highly profitable ventures being shelved.

Rather than panicking about how to fund a next-level thinking project, Kubicek recommends focusing on its value. After all, the ROI of a “could” initiative likely will, by its very nature, outweigh that of a “should” initiative.

In this way, next-level thinking is an ideal starting point for developing growth plans that will lead to more dramatic increases in profitability, sustainability and value. Just make sure to keep the focus on the potential overall outcome of the plan rather than the cost of its related initiatives or you could end up with nothing more than a document that gathers dust in a drawer.

Of course, leaning into anything requires vigilance in managing your emotions, improving your leadership, aligning and engaging your team and maintaining your organization’s financial and operational foundation so that it’s strong enough to support continued growth.

Simply put, backing up next-level thinking with solid strategies and practices is absolutely essential. A company must be strong to keep getting stronger.

If you’re ready to take your leadership and business to the next level, we can help you achieve the significant leap forward in the profitability, sustainability and value of your company we’ve discussed in this article. Contact Carol Coughlin at ccoughlin@bottomline-growth.com or click here to learn more about our growth strategy process and schedule a conversation.  

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Carol Coughlin

Carol Coughlin founded BottomLine Growth Strategies, Inc., in 2006 as a way for small and medium-sized businesses to access the same high-level financial and operational expertise that gives large companies a distinct advantage. Using her own extensive corporate experience and willingness to sit in the hot seat as a catalyst, Carol helps BottomLine Growth clients climb to the summit of their success.
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