What can Citrix Customer Success Management and Citrix Cloud customers learn from a high school in Chicago that changed the wording of their grading scale from “failed” to “not yet passed”? The power of the word “yet.”

Through this simple change of verbiage, these Chicago high school students felt more confident and empowered to continue putting in the effort required to complete the necessary coursework that they had “not yet passed.” For these students, the meaning of effort and difficulty was transformed into something they could still achieve rather than something they had tried for and failed. The increased graduation rates and overall improved math scores caught the attention of Stanford Psychology Professor Carol Dweck and helped guide her development of the “growth” mindset concept.

This time last year, I was teaching AP psychology students about Dweck’s work on the difference between a fixed and growth mindset. She argues that embracing the power of yet liberates us from what she refers to as “the tyranny of now.” Now, in my new career at Citrix, I find myself trying to practice what I used to teach by approaching new work obstacles as challenges I have yet to overcome.

Promoting a Growth Mindset

So what can a company/organization do to promote a growth mindset? Well, it’s not that simple. A study done by the NeuroLeadership Institute found that a lot of companies use the term “growth mindset” but few organizations actually integrate the idea effectively.

This Harvard Business Review article about the study reminds us that only individuals, not entire companies or organizations, can have a growth mindset because that mindset is limited to how a specific person processes any particular situation. What companies and organizations should do is to consistently reinforce the improvements in skills and abilities among the individuals within that group.

Here are a few things that the HBR article suggests leaders and managers do to encourage employees to embrace a growth mindset:

  • Promote ways for employees to see failures as opportunities rather than threats
  • Help people see their own potential on a regular basis
  • Reward effort, strategy and progress

The Power of Yet

As Customer Success Managers (CSMs), we work with a lot of customers who are very interested in a cloud migration but say they are just “not ready yet.” Here are a few ways your CSMs and CSEs (Customer Success Engineers) can help you promote a growth mindset and further explore the power of yet in that “not ready yet.”

  • Enable Access Control by letting a Customer Success Engineer assist you in configuring hosted StoreFront to test a new service, whether that is file integration or delivering SaaS apps with SSO.
  • Let a Customer Success Manager connect you with a Product Manager for Citrix Analytics to help you explore the value of gathering performance and predictive analytics across your suite of Citrix products
  • Still hesitant of moving infrastructure to the cloud? Reach out to your CSM/CSE about Site Aggregation. With site aggregation you can provide your end users with Citrix Cloud access to your on-premises environment.

So next time you come across a work problem or organizational struggle or you hear “not yet,” try to focus your energies on what you have yet to do to overcome that challenge.

— Sterling Thomas, Customer Success Manager