In Start With Why author Simon Sinek helps leaders understand that a clear Why is foundational to business. Your Why should shape how you do what you do. It should be at the core of every pursuit. Taking action that is triggered by the emotional flex of a profound Why will result in on-point marketing that connects you with partners who share your vision and clients who want your service.
In reality, having a meaningful Why is important for any great undertaking. It is not reserved for business and can give strength to any goal. In addition, the more powerful and far reaching the Why, the more it can reinforce you when inspiration wains.
This may be an overused example, but it’s good to highlight the difference between short term, less meaningful Why’s, and Why’s with more substance. Pretend it’s January 1st, and your goal is to get to a healthy BMI by summer which requires a 20 pound weight loss. Here are three Why’s:
- Summer’s coming and I want to feel good about myself.
- I’m going to my 10 year high school reunion and will likely see my childhood nemesis. I want to look absolutely amazing and feel 100% on top of my game so that I can show up with full confidence.
I know that the second example seems vain, but even so, it’s more powerful than the blasé first reason. It has emotional substance that lends strength to your goal. And now consider a final Why:
- I planned a weeklong hiking trip with my son. I want to improve my health and fitness level so that I can share my love of the outdoors with my child, create lasting memories, and improve the quality of my life too.
Wow that last one is loaded. It is focused, noble and has a long-term outcome. I hope you can feel the shift in meaning and energy that each of these bring.
Regarding my own business, I also want to start with Why. I want to help my clients get out from under the burden of debt, and establish personal budgets so that they have the freedom to live their ideal life!
Taking it a step further, I recorded a video sharing five stories that frame my Why.
“The goal of business should not be to do business with anyone who simply wants what you have. It should be to focus on the people who believe what you believe.” – Simon Sinek