Knowing your WHY is important to your success today either personally or for companies. If you are a small business person or you work from home having your WHY is important. In the past you could live off the WHAT but today the WHY is more important than it ever was in the past.
Leaders who focus on the WHY truly inspire people. The video below is Simon Sinek’s talk on the subject as part of a Ted Talk and it is truly inspiring to me.
To quote from Simon Sinek Ted Talk
Why is Apple so innovative? Year after year, after year, after year, they’re more innovative than all their competition. And yet, they’re just a computer company. They’re just like everyone else. They have the same access to the same talent, the same agencies, the same consultants, the same media. Then why is it that they seem to have something different? Why is it that Martin Luther King led the Civil Rights Movement? He wasn’t the only man who suffered in a pre-civil rights America, and he certainly wasn’t the only great orator of the day. Why him? And why is it that the Wright brothers were able to figure out controlled, powered man flight when there were certainly other teams who were better qualified, better funded … and they didn’t achieve powered man flight, and the Wright brothers beat them to it. There’s something else at play here.
What Does TED Talks Stand For? Ted Talks if you have not seen any are about Ideas that are worth spreading. You can check out the TED Talks Topics at ted.com
Why Start with Why
In the examples above all of these people started with WHY and if you are looking to inspire and hence have people want to follow and be involved in your business and you, you need to start with your WHY. Would Apple be where they are today if they started with “we make computers”, No they started with the WHY and inspired people . The Wright Brothers did not have the funding or the brilliant minds but there motivation was their and they knew their WHY. This motivated the people around them. They succeeded from a bicycle shop in Dayton, Ohio where the Government funded highly intelligent competition failed. Martin Luther King’s experiences at the time were not unique at all, there were many other charismatic speakers at the time, he started with his WHY “I have a dream”. The civil rights movement changed the country for the good, but not just for a minority, but for the good of everyone.
The Golden Circle
In Simon Sinek book and his speech he talks about the Golden Circle. This golden circle finds order and predictability in human behavior, it explains why we do what we do. We have typically started from the outside in and the true leaders or companies that inspire start from the inside out. So what does WHY mean, it doesn’t mean to make money, that is a result. It means your purpose, your belief or your cause. Of course this is the fuzziest of the circles. Many people and organization say WHAT they do and sometimes HOW they do it, but rarely WHY they do something. WHAT and HOW are much easier to define than WHY. I will use Simon Sinek example of Apple Computers again.
From the outside in:
We make great computers, They are beautifully designed, simple to use and user-friendly.
Wanna buy one?
Now lets turn in around the other way and go from the inside out:
Everything we do, we believe in challenging the status quo. We believe in thinking differently. The way we challenge the status quo is by making our products beautifully designed, simple to use and user friendly. And we happen to make great computers.
Wanna buy one?
Which one is more appealing to you? Regardless of if you like or hate Apple they have created a reputation for innovation and breaking the Status Quo, the Apple II, the Graphical User Interface, the Mac, the IPod, iTunes, the iPhone, the iPad – Not bad for computer company.
Work on your WHY
At the end of the day people do not buy the WHAT. You may have a similar WHAT to someone else or even an identical WHAT. My wife is a Nerium Brand Partner, so are several thousand other people. Why is she successful? Because of her WHY, and that’s what attracts people to come to her.
People will come to you, do business with you because of your WHY. People buy from People. Simon Sinek’s book is on my book page if you would like to read it, just look for Start with Why,
So if you are going to inspire people and attract them to you or your company work on your WHY?