Studies Show You Shouldnt Tell Your Kids Theyre Smart
Posted by Peter Lawler
If you do, theyll stop taking intellectual risks and otherwise underperform. Dont praise them for their intelligence, praise them for their effort. The same advice probably applies to your colleagues.
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This is a very interesting article. Read it, folks.
My favorite line in this story:
Carol Dweck is a flat-out genius."
I hope no one tells her.
This reminds me of the mother wolf in Kiplings Jungle Book who is insulted when the snake, Ka, praises her cubs when they are present. I always thought that was a good lesson--but I admit that I find it difficult to adhere to it all the time.
Interesting. But on your comments about work colleagues, and I assume you mean perhaps that it refers to people who report to you, I cant agree. In fact, even in parenting, I cant agree. Praising for "effort" is nice but the ticket at all to drive people to succeed and reach. Praising for results (and rewarding same) seems to work the best for everyone concerned.
Well, Patrick, thats a good correction. But my assumption is that you always praise for and to get results. The question is where the results come from: "Oh, this is so good because youre so smart." or "This is so good because you really knocked yourself out." Never employ a non-results based praise for smarts. But there are occasions when effort by itself should be praised, for so many reasons. Heres one: Good effort can often be spoiled by bad luck. (Consider the plight of a Republican stuck with challenging a Democratic incumbent in 2006.)