Working in employer branding, we are acutely aware of the abundance of expectations employers are facing from potential candidates who often have plenty of choice in the current market. I started my role as a Marketing Exec at Chatter a few months ago, and this has already become obvious to me. As a twenty-one-year-old graduate (hi, I’m Lauren!), I spent the past 18 months being the potential employee looking for my dream job. Now being on the employer branding side I recognise just how significant the correlation between attracting the best modern-day employees and adopting a growth mindset truly is.
We live in a fast-paced world where change is constantly happening - and the pandemic has definitely added to that feeling. Every brand is in the same storm but in different boats.
There are bound to be times when you trip up along the way. Mistakes big and small are going to happen. What is true is that both as individuals and as businesses, you must decide whether you grow from your failures or are defined by them.
Your employees (existing and potential) can gauge what type of mindset your company has by the way you react to unexpected changes, new trends, and how you develop amongst your competitors.
A fixed mindset “assumes that [y]our character, intelligence, and creative ability are static givens which we can’t change in any meaningful way”, whereas a growth mindset "thrives on challenge and sees failure not as evidence of unintelligence but as a heartening springboard for growth and for stretching [y]our existing abilities.”
Adopting a growth mindset means your brand should be…
- Eager to try something new
- Mindful of the process rather than rushing for the end result
- Anticipating issues and responding to them efficiently
- Testing your limits all the time
- Learning from your mistakes
By adopting these mindsets your employer brand will undoubtedly benefit. For example, being eager to try new things and testing your limits can reflect your dedication to learning, development, and inclusivity. Willingness to grow means you value development and progression in your team, which can also reflect your ability and drive to develop your ED&I within your workplace.
Accountability is also a hugely important and respectable trait to have as a brand, so taking responsibility for mistakes you’ve made, or issues that have arisen within the business and acting to overcome them is something that candidates will admire. In comparison to those brands which prefer to bury their head in the sand, it can make your brand stand out. No one wants to work for a company that their friends and family are constantly moaning about in terms of customer service.
The world is full of unexpected changes and hiccups, so failure and challenges are inevitable. What is important is your perspective on this. You can choose to admit defeat or you can grow and be a leader within your market.
Adopting a growth mindset as a business can boost your brand reputation AND improve your talent attraction. The modern employee has new expectations and needs since the pandemic hit that may not align with your previous employer branding strategies. Now it is so much more important to candidates to find companies that align with their culture and ethics. The Employee Expectations Report 2021 created by Peakon found that embedding health and wellbeing, ED&I, and growth into the culture of your company is expected from potential employers. It’s no longer just about competitive salaries, but genuine care for your team and a drive to improve inclusivity. I took my job at Chatter over another marketing job because Chatter has an encouraging, friendly, and inclusive culture that is worth more to me than anything else. It’s time to adapt.
Microsoft is a great example of what having a growth mindset can achieve. It transformed from a slowly declining business into a leading brand again. They took on an experimental approach to its recruitment process, partnering with education providers to boost employee skills and dedicating itself to diversifying the team to create better results.
Similarly, Asda began its journey to an improved employer brand ‘Reimagining Retail’, when it was thrown into the challenges of the pandemic. Through experimentation, dedication, and hard work the team not only constructed a successful employer brand but they started the campaign ‘Feed the Nation’ recruiting over 23,000 people during the pandemic.
We are entering a completely new landscape of working and we have yet to find the best way to navigate through it. With a growth mindset, your brand could be the one that sets the standard for the new way of working.