Written by 7:22 am Growth Mindset, Everyday Life • 5 Comments

Dissimilarity between Growth and Development?

Recently, I have been asking my friends and colleagues to distinguish the differences between Growth and Development; and what I received was their astonished faces and then they asked me back whether these words were different from each other. And our discussion began in that way!

Regarding English Learning, learners sometimes do not notice the subtle differences between the words they have been using. Typically, they use a bilingual dictionary like Lac-Viet or T-Flat to look up the meaning of the words. However, it’s not an accurate way to understand the core meaning of a word indeed. Like Vietnamese, learners can find synonyms and antonyms in English; but if they have time to research the true meaning of the words; they will understand exactly the insights that each word has been carrying itself.

Due to that disconcerting habit of understanding the meaning of words, there exist misunderstandings and ineffective actions afterward. Obviously, the mission here is to help yourself  realize the core meanings and then learn and act more effectively.



In some research I have read lately, they point out that the good way to assess a business entity is to rely on two key factors: Effectiveness and Efficiency.

When these 2 factors are placed next to each other, it might confuse some individuals. To figure out what they actually mean, it can be said that Effectiveness reflects the Actual Result versus the Planned Result; whereas Efficiency indicates how well doers use their resources to generate their expected outcomes or results.

When everything is done, the can-be-seen result will be used to assess one’s performance; and surely it is necessary to count both effectiveness and efficiency.

Now, I would like you to relate the concept to see the reflection on your performance:

  1. Which one means more to you, effectiveness or efficiency? Why?
  2. Have you ever sacrificed resources to get the expected results? Why?
  3. You will think about the results first, and then how to use resources, won’t you? Why?
  4. Effectiveness and Efficiency will come up in your mind at the same time when you receive any tasks or projects. Why?



Effectiveness reminds you to strictly follow your plans and your goals to direct all actions coming up along the way; Efficiency guides you on how to juggle between aimed Results and available Resources so that you can get Better Results and use fewer Resources.

Actually, in the business context,  every one of us needs to keep them in mind when it comes to Planning. The 2 key factors mainly navigate the HOW in a plan.

A good plan requires much more effort than you think. It is not what is simply written on paper, it reflects how deeply and comprehensively you see your “destination”.

According to what I aforementioned, I would like all of you to change your angles of view and replace your normal lenses with Business ones.  If you are longing for “Positive Results” at your workplace, you are highly supposed to be well aware of the Five Functions of Management. Of course, there is no need to be a manager to carry out these functions because you are an entity, and that entity needs well planning, organizing, staffing & directing, and controlling.

As I opened the article, I would like my readers to focus on the steps of Planning and the factors affecting your Planning Process.



The first word you might say is “Goal”. You’re right!

However, when the conversation is going deeper and further, many of you will get stuck because you might find it hard to define your Goal.  “What is your Goal?” is a thought-provoking question of all time.

If you are going to detail, it will be a great challenge and an endless conversation. In general, our goals cover 2 essential aspects: Growth and Development.

Before jumping into further discussions and implications, I would like to give you a situation in which you can reflect on what has been happening in your life.

When you were a newborn baby, your parents needed to take good care of you so that you could grow steadily. At that time, they had to focus on some indicators like your weight and your height.  When you grew older, your parents sent you to school with the expectation that you could have better knowledge and awareness of the world surrounding you.  To ensure you were on track, they kept challenging you by asking powerful questions to help you gain awareness of your own reality, to help you think differently about your situations and learn something about yourselves; and even to help you identify what actions might be willing to take or not to take.

I bet that all of your parents’ moves and actions had to be guided by clear purposes or goals.

If you notice carefully, you will see the implications through the taken actions. Honestly, the two factors directing the way people set their goals are

  1. GROWTH: After a period, they need to increase their physical assets such as income,  salary, houses, lands, stocks…
  2. DEVELOPMENT: After a period, they need to enhance their internal force through knowledge, mindset, viewpoints,…

Now, Let’s look at the figure below. What implications can you take from it? 

At different ages of life, you have different missions to achieve. Your main duties are to be able to recognize them and make them come true. If you take wrong actions, you might sacrifice years to recover. If you are from 23 to 49 now, learn how to balance your Growth and Development properly.  Remember that Growth and Development are like 2 faces of a coin. They are together and succeed each other. Your tacit strategy must be to realize when the ratio of Growth is greater than Development and vice versa.



Growth and Development can be seen as the Initial Purposes of an individual in a certain context and stage of life.  And it is actually the end of the mind. If you apply one of the tactics mentioned in the book of the 7 Habits of Effective PeopleBegin with the end in mind. You will recognize that you are highly meant to see accurately your goals; and up to now, you can decide More Growth or More Development for a project (Life Project or Work Project). From that, you can draw detailed actions and apply the concepts of Effectiveness and Efficiency to modify your planned actions in reality.

Now, you can go back to the questions at the beginning of the article and answer all of them again. You will see the differences.

Here below are the commonly seen contexts in a person’s life:

Context 1: You have enough resources to take a job, and you can grow as expected.

Context 2: You have to sharpen your saw before you take a job, you cannot say no to development at that point.

Context 3: You have resources but they cannot help you achieve your goals, you need to slow down to develop yourself first and then grow

When you research more about the meaning of Growth and Development in your life, you will learn that some growth cannot lead you to real development, but declination. Therefore, one’s sustainable development requires your integrated understanding about Society, Economy, and Environment. Coming along with that understanding, Growth or Development can be the right decision if you are well aware of your context. Good luck my readers!

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