January 28, 2011

Extra Reading for Chapter 3

Posted in BADM 720 tagged , , , , at 6:12 pm by Sarah

Dweck’s Article

In her article “Can Personality Be Changed?”, Carol Dweck spends a lot of time talking about the role of our beliefs about our learning in our personality.  I can’t say I’ve ever put too much thought into whether we are born with a certain level of intelligence or whether it can grow with our experience.  My experiences as a student, however, have been widely varied, and my thoughts about education and learning have changed with them. 

For example, as a high school student I excelled in most of my classes, except for one: senior-year Calculus.  In the previous few years I had been having more and more trouble with my math classes, and had developed a sort of mental block.  I thought I was simply not good at math and never would be, and unsurprisingly, I barely made it through Calculus.

As I progressed through my general and diversity courses in college, I was exposed to a great variety of interesting subjects, and frequently found myself in the position of being a raw beginner in the discipline.  But my interest in these new subjects kept me engaged and working hard to understand them, leading me to great academic success.  I graduated college with the idea that a lack of knowledge can always be overcome by thorough study.  That feeling of confidence is returning to me as I begin my graduate studies, and so far, so good!

Sutton’s Blog

Bob Sutton’s blog post on the subject of this article brought to light an important implication of Dweck’s research for those of us in a business setting.  I find it highly plausible that believing in our brains’ ability to learn and grow makes us more receptive to learning new things and tackling new challenges.  As an employee, I actually have no idea what my supervisor believes about this, but I definitely see how a manager can help employees develop the attitude that they can do anything they set their minds to.


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