Manager Growth Mindset and Resource Management Practices

59 Pages Posted: 6 Jan 2021 Last revised: 14 Jan 2021

See all articles by Margaret A. Abernethy

Margaret A. Abernethy

University of Melbourne, Department of Accounting

Shannon W. Anderson

University of California, Davis - Graduate School of Management

Sujay Nair

The University of Melbourne

Yile (Anson) Jiang

University of Melbourne

Date Written: November 11, 2020

Abstract

We study the relation between a manager’s growth mindset and their use of resource management practices. Growth mindset is based on implicit person theory and is an established and measurable psychological construct. It refers to a person’s deeply held beliefs about whether, in general, people can learn, develop, and change throughout their lives or whether “who they are” is relatively fixed by initial talent endowments (termed a ‘fixed mindset’). Given the demonstrated importance of a growth mindset for educational outcomes and the emerging research studying the influence of mindset on behavior within organizations, we explore whether school principals’ mindset is associated with their resource management practices. Using survey and archival data from 257 primary and secondary school principals, we find that a growth mindset is associated with greater use of budgets to explain and discuss budget variances with key constituents and as an enabler in their managerial role. Principals with a growth mindset also engage in fundraising activities and use non-financial rewards for their teachers significantly more than fixed mindset principals. We also find that the relations between a principal’s mindset and some of these practices are different depending on the school’s performance context.

Keywords: Growth Mindset, Resource Management Practices, Management Controls

Suggested Citation

Abernethy, Margaret A. and Anderson, Shannon W. and Nair, Sujay and Jiang, Yile, Manager Growth Mindset and Resource Management Practices (November 11, 2020). Accounting, Organizations and Society, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3728366 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3728366

Margaret A. Abernethy

University of Melbourne, Department of Accounting ( email )

Victoria
Melbourne, Victoria 3010 3010
Australia
+61 3 8344 7655 (Phone)
+61 3 9349 2397 (Fax)

Shannon W. Anderson

University of California, Davis - Graduate School of Management ( email )

One Shields Avenue
Apt 153
Davis, CA 95616
United States

Sujay Nair (Contact Author)

The University of Melbourne ( email )

Victoria
Melbourne, Victoria 3010 3010
Australia
+61-3-90353799 (Phone)

Yile Jiang

University of Melbourne ( email )

185 Pelham Street
Carlton, Victoria 3053
Australia

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