What’s The Why – Simon Sinek


Simon Sinek is a British-American author, motivational speaker and organisational consultant.  Author of five books, including Start With Why, Sinek presents a riveting argument about starting your sales presentation with Why?

Whilst most leaders and companies start from the outside in, starting with What; Sinek explores the idea that inspired leaders think, act and communicate from the inside out.

In his 2009 TED Talk, “What’s The Why”, Sinek questions why the great leaders and global corporations throughout history have been so successful. Whilst everyone has access to the same information, ideas and concepts; why is it that a select few have managed to stand out from the herd?

He realised that there is a pattern between these successful and inspired leaders, in that they all think, act and communicate the same way – and it’s the complete opposite to everyone else.  Taking this pattern, Sinek codified what he calls “The Golden Circle.”

The Golden Circle:

The Why doesn’t refer to profit, but the soul behind your organisation. It refers to what your purpose is, what your cause and beliefs are. Why does your organisation exist?

This forces us to look at our businesses and selves analytically – we assume we know why we do what we do, but how do we explain it to others?

Using Apple as an example, Sinek presents their marketing strategy of putting their beliefs at the forefront when other companies put their product ahead.

In the majority of the What group is how we market and how we’re marketed to.  How many times have you seen an advertisement that follows the same structure of “This is our product, it is the best in the world, you should buy it.”

Apple’s purpose, presented in their marketing is a stark comparison. “We believe in challenging the status quo. We believe in creating a better future for users and simplifying technology. We also happen to make great computers.”

It’s that trust in Apple that makes its consumer comfortable. We know they offer fantastic products.
The key note here is – People don’t buy what you do, they buy Why you do it.

The goal is not to do business with everyone who needs what you have, the goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe.

What are your thoughts on Simon’s theory? Have you tried his Golden Circle approach and has it worked for your business? What is your Why?

Written by Paige Hart for Slidesho.

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