In his best-selling book “Start with Why,” author Simon Sinek underlines the factors that make successful companies successful. He encourages readers to go above and beyond the obvious in running their organizations or jobs – that is, going back to the root cause of why you started your work in the first place.
According to Sinek, leaders, and companies that are inspiring “think, act, and communicate exactly alike. And it’s the complete opposite of everyone else.” In this article, we will talk about the 5 lessons that can be learned from “Start with Why” that make organizations impactful and successful.
Start with why
by Simon Sinek
⏱ 14 minutes reading time
🎧 Audio version available
The Golden Circle
Sinek introduces the concept of The Golden Circle, which urges the reader to start with their WHY at the very center, followed by HOW and finally WHAT.
The most important factor of WHY is the justification for your business to exist. It explains how things are carried out in the company and how decisions are made. It essentially defines the values of your business.
Inspiration is Influence
When running a business, inspiration is more effective than manipulation.
Manipulation could look like dropping prices, blinking texts, promotions, etc. These might lead to short-term gains but cost more in the long run.
Let people know what truly inspires your business. Help them understand why you wish to sell a product or service to them and how that product or service would solve a problem they have.
Money is Not a ‘WHY’
Successful companies understand that money is not their WHY. Instead, innovation comes from thinking beyond mere financial gains.
Yes, profits are important. But they are not as important as ethics, values, and the uniqueness of your company.
When you truly define your WHY beyond monetary gains, you will build a customer base that is loyal to your brand. In the words of the author,
“Imagine if every organization started with WHY. Decisions would be simpler. Loyalties would be greater. Trust would be a common currency.”
The Power of Trust
When companies combine WHAT, HOW, and WHY, they build trust with not just their customers but also internally within the organization. For instance, people perform at their best when they are part of a culture that fits their beliefs and values.
When an organization builds itself on trust and positive values, it is more likely to explore innovative avenues, take risks, and ultimately act on its vision. In contrast, if there is no trust, there would be no risks. If there are no risks, there would be no advancement of society.
Listening to Your Audience
Successful companies listen to their audience. Something as simple as a logo can reflect on a company’s brand image and how people perceive it.
But going beyond the audience, you should also observe and listen to your competition. When you observe your competition and listen to your audience, you will come up with a list of your own factors that your organization should consider in order to serve the customer better.
Doing so would help your organization make better decisions and improve its structure consistently.
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