Growth Mindset Techniques

Through our scientific research we have identified a key set of techniques that, when understood, learnt and acted upon, will significantly increase your ability to achieve a Growth Mindset.

Our suite of management techniques will teach you how to transform your performance by embedding these practices into your people, processes and strategy to drive high performance.





Marginal Gains

Marginal Gains is a form of continuous improvement. It is where you break down a substantial issue into its component parts and then identify how to realise a marginal gain in each of these component parts to achieve a significant cumulative effect. This is marginal gains driving high performance results. It is realising 1% improvements in everything we do.

The outcomes you will achieve from our product:

  • Identify how to improve many things by a small amount, where the accumulative improvement can be great.
  • Embed the ability to challenge the status quo through small changes
  • Empower individuals and teams to open their minds to look for opportunities to make improvement in their daily practices

Pre-Mortem

If a project or initiative has failed, there is the potential for a post-mortem. The opportunity to find out what went wrong, why and how.

But imagine the benefits of being able to do this before you launch your project or initiative. Before the cost has been incurred, the time spent, the relationships strained. This is what we call a Pre-Mortem. We use a technique called Prospective Hindsight to create a state of mind where you can re-imagine the future and learn from failure – before its even happened.

This approach creates a safe space for people to engage with failure in an objective way.

The outcomes you will achieve from our product:

  • Brings learning from failure upfront in any critical process.
  • Substantially improves the ability to identify hidden issues, giving the business time to proactively manage them.
  • Significantly improves successful outcomes and reduces associated costs.
  • Creates buy-in and engagement from a team now already committed to learning from failure.

After Action Review

Reviewing a project or an event objectively is vital to harness the learnings and take these forward into new initiatives. But hindsight bias, self-justification and a lack of objectivity can all be barriers to performing an effective after-action review.

 The key is to include an objective mediator and to avoid the blame cycle. Focus should be on the positives as well as the areas for improvement. It is a “moment in time intervention” that focusses on “what happened” and “how it was implemented”, not “who did what well or badly”.

It ensures we learn from our successes and failures and use them to drive a high-performance culture.

The outcomes you will achieve from our product:

  • Delivers immediate insight and learnings to achieve greater efficiency following a specific event
  • Creates an environment that promotes agility combined with open and honest discussion to objectively assess root causes of performance
  • Empowers the team to take accountability for unforeseen outcomes of events and improve how they performed together

Accelerated & Additive Thinking

Improve productivity and drive innovation by harnessing the power of individuals and groups to create a more powerful and impactful series of diverse ideas. Individuals can explore their own thinking before the wider group collaborates to build upon the best ideas.

The outcomes you will achieve from our product:

  • Produces at least 5 times as many high-quality ideas compared to traditional group methods such as collective brainstorming or problem-solving.
  • Creates an environment for diversity of thought to flourish.
  • Allows more effective discussion of ideas and facilitates accelerated progression of them.
  • Breaks normalised patterns of behaviour and encourages innovative thinking.

“Growth mindset is changing our culture and helping to unlock hidden potential by identifying real and unconscious barriers to growth and energising our people to overcome them. We are also seeing systemic changes that will help to increase agility and further improve business performance.”

“Growth mindset is changing our culture and helping to unlock hidden potential by identifying real and unconscious barriers to growth and energising our people to overcome them. We are also seeing systemic changes that will help to increase agility and further improve business performance.”

Principal, Global Financial Services Organisation

“Our work around growth mindset is making tangible our culture as an innovative and supportive law firm, which helps us to attract and retain the right people.”

“Our work around growth mindset is making tangible our culture as an innovative and supportive law firm, which helps us to attract and retain the right people.”

Partner, Global Law Firm

“Staff at every level have really engaged with growth mindset and marginal gains and feel more empowered and accountable, which is helping drive continued improvements across our operations.”

“Staff at every level have really engaged with growth mindset and marginal gains and feel more empowered and accountable, which is helping drive continued improvements across our operations.”

Production Manager, UK Processing Plant

“We quickly realised that we were doing more than introducing new initiatives, we were defining our very DNA – who we are and how we operate.”

“We quickly realised that we were doing more than introducing new initiatives, we were defining our very DNA – who we are and how we operate.”

Director, Professional Services Organisation

As a manager, understanding the psychology behind fixed and growth mindset and how to create a culture for high performance was immensely valuable.”

As a manager, understanding the psychology behind fixed and growth mindset and how to create a culture for high performance was immensely valuable.”

Consultant and Clinical Director, NHS

“We have reduced incidental expenses by 25%, which directly benefits our bottom line.”

“We have reduced incidental expenses by 25%, which directly benefits our bottom line.”

CEO, UK Construction Company

We have improved quality, productivity and capacity through growth mindset, saving us hundreds of thousands of pounds a year and helping us increase revenues and profits.”

We have improved quality, productivity and capacity through growth mindset, saving us hundreds of thousands of pounds a year and helping us increase revenues and profits.”

Chief Operating Officer, Logistics Organisation

“Black Box Thinking has enabled us to deliver pension schemes that have outperformed the UK average by 40% over the past decade.”

“Black Box Thinking has enabled us to deliver pension schemes that have outperformed the UK average by 40% over the past decade.”

Divisional Manager, Pension Provider

“We have reduced errors by 77%, driving up customer trust and satisfaction and minimising the risk of costly emergency product withdrawal (EPW) processes and associated financial penalties.”

“We have reduced errors by 77%, driving up customer trust and satisfaction and minimising the risk of costly emergency product withdrawal (EPW) processes and associated financial penalties.”

Production Manager, UK Processing Plant

“In less than 100 days after deploying Mindset Advantage, we have radically changed a key customer-facing process, increasing efficiency by 30% and delivering better client outcomes.”

“In less than 100 days after deploying Mindset Advantage, we have radically changed a key customer-facing process, increasing efficiency by 30% and delivering better client outcomes.”

Senior Vice President, Professional Services Organisation

“We have increased productivity by 44%, output by 3%, and are doing more interventions than ever working a five-day week instead of seven.”

“We have increased productivity by 44%, output by 3%, and are doing more interventions than ever working a five-day week instead of seven.”

Consultant and Clinical Director, NHS

“The tools and techniques provided in the course will certainly go a long way towards helping me understand how to better plan for success but also help me realise that failure is not necessarily a negative thing but is certainly a positive learning opportunity.”

“The tools and techniques provided in the course will certainly go a long way towards helping me understand how to better plan for success but also help me realise that failure is not necessarily a negative thing but is certainly a positive learning opportunity.”

Associate Director Sustainable Business, Interserve Construction Limited

“Strategically, we have gained a richer, deeper understanding of the pervasiveness of the benefits available from adopting a growth mindset perspective. Tactically, you gain experience in a new technique that you can take straight back into the working environment. Personally, I have changed the way I engage – both at home and at work”

“Strategically, we have gained a richer, deeper understanding of the pervasiveness of the benefits available from adopting a growth mindset perspective. Tactically, you gain experience in a new technique that you can take straight back into the working environment. Personally, I have changed the way I engage – both at home and at work”

COO, Osborne

“The work we have undertaken gives you the toolkit to invoke cultural change in a business to enable performance improvement. The programme brings the theory of ‘Black Box Thinking’ to life. It provides real life examples to back up theories and allow the delegates to learn, reflect and consider how it can be applied in the work environment”

“The work we have undertaken gives you the toolkit to invoke cultural change in a business to enable performance improvement. The programme brings the theory of ‘Black Box Thinking’ to life. It provides real life examples to back up theories and allow the delegates to learn, reflect and consider how it can be applied in the work environment”

Best Practice Manager, Arriva UK Trains

“Inspiring, motivating, engaging … just some of the words my team used following their participation. Essex Police has benefited from Matthew Syed’s Black Box Training session….. the ripples of incremental change are spreading in a way that benefits colleagues and most importantly the people of Essex.”

“Inspiring, motivating, engaging … just some of the words my team used following their participation. Essex Police has benefited from Matthew Syed’s Black Box Training session….. the ripples of incremental change are spreading in a way that benefits colleagues and most importantly the people of Essex.”

Chief Constable, Essex Police

“This was a genuinely enlightening, entertaining and informative experience – it is thought-provoking, challenging, insightful, fun and relevant to the most and the least experienced team member. The fact that “Black Box Thinking” and Matthew Syed anecdotes have become part of the everyday vocabulary of our team is a testament to the impact this has made.”

“This was a genuinely enlightening, entertaining and informative experience – it is thought-provoking, challenging, insightful, fun and relevant to the most and the least experienced team member. The fact that “Black Box Thinking” and Matthew Syed anecdotes have become part of the everyday vocabulary of our team is a testament to the impact this has made.”

Group Head of Transactional Services, Pinsent Masons LLP

“Fantastic, new approaches and techniques to transform our mindset”

“Fantastic, new approaches and techniques to transform our mindset”

Business Excellence Consultant, Siemens

“Utterly inspiring. We are looking forward already to booking you again.”

“Utterly inspiring. We are looking forward already to booking you again.”

Senior Partner, Simmons and Simmons

“This programme would benefit organisations by providing an excellent framework to understand and appreciate their organisational mindset, and start to think about how they can accelerate their leadership skills to drive business forward. This is a hugely insightful programme.”

“This programme would benefit organisations by providing an excellent framework to understand and appreciate their organisational mindset, and start to think about how they can accelerate their leadership skills to drive business forward. This is a hugely insightful programme.”

Quality Culture Programme Lead, GlaxoSmithKline

The insights, learning and science really drives home the scale of the opportunity we have as leaders, through change of mindset and the introduction of these tools with our people”

The insights, learning and science really drives home the scale of the opportunity we have as leaders, through change of mindset and the introduction of these tools with our people”

Senior Manager, Change Management Divestment Programme, Royal Bank of Scotland

“It forced me to reflect on how I approach development within my team.  I have continued to think on this after the event which I think shows how impactful it was.”

“It forced me to reflect on how I approach development within my team.  I have continued to think on this after the event which I think shows how impactful it was.”

Director, Barclays

“In Black Box Thinking, Matthew shows how having a growth mindset and creating a culture willing to embrace and learn from failure can categorically improve performance”

“In Black Box Thinking, Matthew shows how having a growth mindset and creating a culture willing to embrace and learn from failure can categorically improve performance”

Partner and Director of External Relations, Virgin

 “The Mindset workshop was nothing short of outstanding. The message of a Growth Mindset resonates with the culture we are striving to create.”

 “The Mindset workshop was nothing short of outstanding. The message of a Growth Mindset resonates with the culture we are striving to create.”

Chief Fire Officer

“My own thinking was challenged in this workshop – new ideas – even though I had already read Black Box Thinking”

“My own thinking was challenged in this workshop – new ideas – even though I had already read Black Box Thinking”

Chief Executive, Independent Police Complaints Commission

“After deploying Mindset Advantage, we have radically changed a key process, increasing efficiency by 30% and delivering better client outcomes.”

“After deploying Mindset Advantage, we have radically changed a key process, increasing efficiency by 30% and delivering better client outcomes.”

Senior Vice President, Professional Services Organisation

Our Delivery Methods

We are able to deliver these outcomes to you through a combination of methods to suit your schedule and location: