• Michael Melendrez

Joining (Or Building) A Team - What’s Your Why?



In Simon Sinek's Ted Talk "Start With Why", he set out to answer a question:


What differentiates successful businesses and leaders from others that seem to be doing the same job? Using a series of high-profile examples, Sinek made a convincing argument that understanding your "Why" is essential.


Why do you do what you do? Let the answer drive every decision you make. Simon's reflection on the nature of success resonated widely throughout the world of business, led to a best-selling book, and has continued toshape conversations ever since.


The Golden Circle


Simon explained his concept using the visual framework of three concentric circles, each representing "Why", "How" and "What". He suggests (and I agree) that the wrong approach, and also the most common, is to first articulate "What" you want to do and then decide "How". The "Why" is usually never even a thought. The problem with this? The “Why” is what will compel you to be freaking awesome.

Simon uses Apple as one example of a company that became successful by switching the order and starting with "why". Apple's iconic philosophy, "Think Different", became intrinsic to both the company's branding and product design. This fundamental value informed every aspect of the next step, which was "How". The ultimate result? Apple's "What" is a wide-ranging product line that authentically fulfills the company's core belief about innovation…”Think Different”


How To Start With "Why"


One reason that Simon's concept about knowing and articulating your "Why" resonated so deeply is that it's so widely applicable. Both businesses and individuals will benefit from engaging with their "Why". It’s the same in recruiting. The job seeker should have the same essential goal, which is to find a company whose "Why" will inspire their best work and support their own “Why”. If your values provide the broader context behind everything that you do, then your "How" and your "What" will be in alignment with that purpose. Having this incredibly strong foundation can drive long term happiness.


The process for finding your "Why" begins with deep reflection. What are your core values? What are your talents? Businesses will benefit from looking around their industry to identify what's missing that their organization has the passion to improve. Whether you're a company or a person, find your "Why" at the intersection of the role you genuinely want to play, dive in and enjoy the swim


Haven't watched Simon Sinek's talk yet? His insights are well worth your time.