In his book Start with Why, Simon Sinek explains that individuals and organizations who know why they do what they do attract a more loyal following than those who only know what they do and how they do it.
Sinek provides a real world example by describing the differences between Apple Computer and IBM. Both make very good computers and employ some of the world’s most gifted engineers and designers. Yet, Apple customers are cult-like in their zest to own only Apple’s latest creations rather than IBM’s.
According to Sinek, there is a direct correlation between Apple’s why and their customers’ interests. It’s likely that Apple would describe it this way:
In everything we do, we believe in challenging the status quo. We believe in thinking differently (why). The way we challenge the status quo is to make our products beautifully designed, easy to use and user friendly (how). We just happen to make great computers. Want to buy one? (what).
The communication is from the inside out. From why to how and then to what. Most of us communicate in the opposite direction, and it is not as inspiring. Nor is it as attractive to potential customers and clients.
Because it’s all based on how people think and act, this unique view of the world has application in big business and small business, in politics and non-profit.
Though some people have a natural ability to start with why, this book offers compelling evidence that, with a little discipline, anyone can learn how to do it.
Watch this 18 minute video of Simon Sinek at the TED talks:
How does one idea do so much? Simple. It doesn’t matter WHAT you do or HOW you do it if you are not communicating WHY you do it.
WHY are you offering your product and service? Please tell us. Maybe we’ll buy from you next time instead of the other guys!
John Morlan, a partner in Authentic Abundance helps independent professionals make more money.