In this episode of The Psychology Podcast, host Scott Barry Kaufman talks with organizational psychologist Adam Grant about rethinking: the willingness to reconsider your own ideas, opinions – even what you think you know. Their companionable, wide-ranging conversation touches on innovation, ethics, cancel culture and entrepreneurship. Kaufman is a humanistic psychologist and the author of Transcend: The New Science of Self-Actualization.
“Rethinking” means being humble, flexible and curious enough to question what you believe and what you think you know.
“Rethinking” means active open-mindedness: constantly updating your knowledge, assumptions and opinions. Rethinking begins with humility – recognizing that you probably believe many things that aren’t true and that you lack knowledge in large areas of your life. Rethinking includes mental flexibility as well as maintaining a degree of doubt about what you hold to be true and curiosity to learn what you don’t know.
The concept of rethinking grew out of political scientist Phil Tetlock’s notion of the preacher, prosecutor and politician mind-sets. People with the preacher mind-set feel they know the truth and want to make other people believe the same. Prosecutors want to show other people how they’re wrong to “win their case.” Politicians constantly seek approval from people and, although they might appear to be flexible, never actually change their thinking.
In one study, researchers instructed half of a group of Italian entrepreneurs to consider their vision and strategy as only theories, and to take a scientific approach to identifying...
The Psychology Podcast offers insights into the mind, brain, behavior and creativity. Its host, Scott Barry Kaufman, is a humanistic psychologist and self-actualization coach. Adam Grant is an organizational psychologist at Wharton, author of four best-selling books and host of the TED podcast WorkLife with Adam Grant.