Growth Mindset 2.0: the Hustler

The "Hustler" is one of the three sub-mindsets which belong to the Growth Mindset 2.0.

Have you ever faced challenges in getting a test live?


I can honestly say there have been times where I'd have said “hell yes!” within a millisecond. It came down to lacking budget and time, trying to do too much too fast, or even spending too much of your resources in a test and realising it late. Way too late. That happened to all of us. And this is where the "Hustler" mindset comes into place. 

You could spend hours complaining about the developers not putting the priority on your tests, or you could think of another way to reach your goal without them. This is what we started teaching our team and clients. We call it Growth Mindset 2.0


It comes down to adopting three additional ways of thinking to gain a Growth Mindset 2.0 - one not only capable of personal growth but corporate growth:

The systemiser, the profiteer, and the hustler are parts of the Growth Mindset 2.0

If you're not 100% of what is Growth Mindset 1.0., check our blog post about the 7 pillars of Growth Hacking. It will give you all the info you need before continuing with this series!

What does being a hustler mean? 

When I first heard the word hustling I hated it. "Just hustle, Just do it!". Full-on Gary Vaynerchuk style: 16 hours workdays, push through it. Push through it? Burn out more like it. I had seen his most loyal followers end up burned out. No, thank you. That'll be the end of that.

Yet, people - even at work - were taught to embrace the hustler's mindset. I thought, maybe I should not have such a fixed mindset, and looked into it. Here is what I found: 

The official (aka Urban Dictionary) definition of a hustler:

“To have the courage, confidence, self-belief, and self-determination to go out there and work it out until you find the opportunities you want in life.” 

Hustling isn't about working 16 hours a day. Rather about going after what you want, taking action, not striving for perfection, and finding opportunities. I realised I'd even been preaching to hustle under a different name!

My definition of a hustler:

Focus on the 20% that drives 80% of the value. Don't aim for perfect, aim for action. Sometimes that requires creativity, but something done is better than nothing. 

It's known as Pareto-principle: 80% of the effect comes from only 20% of the cause. 

That means that just a small part of your actions will lead to a large part of the results. It is about focusing on what delivers results.

This principle goes perfectly hand in hand with the law of diminishing returns. As the more time/energy/ etc. we put into something the returns eventually start to decrease:

Law of Diminishing Returns

The main problem is not that we don't stop at that 20% mark, but most of us realise the returns have decreased too late. 

A hustler makes things happen and gets things done. But a good hustler knows how to get things done and make things happen in the minimum possible amount of time to get the maximum results.

Don’t aim for perfect, aim for Action

If we start learning and embracing this concept, we begin to accept that perfect is not what we are aiming for. What we are aiming for is action and results. You can then make a business case for action but also make a valid business case for inaction: it doesn't drive results.

Often when we have a winning test, we go all excited to the development team:


- "Hey guys, can you implement this?" (Slide over Tony's Chocolonely bar as a bribe). 
- "Sure, we should be able to pick it up in six weeks." (Grab the Chocolate bar back, they don't deserve it anymore.). 


Now, being a profiteer, I know what it costs for that test not to be live, but sometimes they do have higher priority items. 

So I go for a subpar solution: I create an A/B test in Google Optimise and set it up to run on 100% of my visitors. A perfect solution would be that they put it live, but no action is even worse.

Something done is better than nothing

When something stands in your way, it is easy and natural to say it can't be done. Yet, a big part of being a true hustler is getting creative - getting hacky. Rarely can something not be done, it just can't be done perfectly or the way you originally planned it. 

I once saw a key page in the funnel of a client that wasn't performing well and was costing them conversions. Through analysis, I developed a hypothesis; we need to add a clearer Call to Action. However, it was an old page, and adding the missing call to action would require a redesign and development time. So I got creative: “What if I tested a Sumo Smartbar instead?” That way, I had it live in 30 minutes and could see whether it improves the Click Through Rate. 


To summarise, how can you be a hustler?

  • Focus on the 20% that drives 80% of the value
  • Always find a way to get things live
  • Be creative in solving challenges (e.g. use tools where possible)
  • Implement solutions step by step