CTech’s Book Review: Finding your WHY in business and in life
Ella Vidra, VP of IT Ops and Engineering at Playtika, shares insights after reading "Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action” by Simon Sinek
Ella Vidra is the VP of IT Ops and Engineering at Playtika, a mobile gaming company. She has joined CTech to share a review of "Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action” by Simon Sinek
Title: "Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action”
Author: Simon Sinek
"Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action” is a book by Simon Sinek, a British-American author and a speaker that teaches leaders and organizations how to inspire people.
He launched his speaker career in 2009 at a TED Talk by popularizing his concept of “WHY”. It rose to become the second most watched TED Talk of all time and remains in the top five today with nearly 50 million views. The book is dealing with a fundamental question, that all of us should ask ourselves until we know and understand the answer is: Why do you do what you do? Specifically, if you are a leader and you want others to follow you. This is a question that organizations should ask themselves, as well. Any organization can explain WHAT they do or even HOW they do it, but very few can explain WHY?
In our world, it became very difficult to be innovative. there are multiple products, similar to each other, that give you similar performance, service, or answers that you need for the same price. Even if not – it will be a matter of time before your products will be copied and become available. So what do some companies do differently to become leaders? Why do customers buy from one company or another?
It is the same with leaders – why do we follow and connect to specific kinds of people and choose them to lead us? Why are people loyal to some leaders, but not others?
Starting with" WHY" works in business, nonprofits, or politics. Know your" WHY".
Throughout the book the author is relating to 3 questions:
- Why – Your Purpose. What is your cause? What do you believe in?
- How – Your process. Specific actions taken to realize your "WHY".
- What – Your process. What do you do? The result of Why. Proof.
The positions of these questions, in the so-called “Golden Circle”, another concept introduced by Sinek, emphasize the journey companies and leaders must acknowledge to find the answers.
It is clearly explained by practical examples of the most famous companies like Apple, Volkswagen, and Walmart.
And even some examples from history of well-known leaders, such as President Kennedy or Martin Luther King, did a great job being true to themselves by putting their WHY to the test and achieving success by doing so.
In other chapters, Sinek is showing other aspects of the WHY concept, such as “What happens if WHY goes Fuzzy” or the ways to communicate your mission statement to various surroundings – customers and employees.
It is interesting to follow through the book how companies who stay relevant and successful for years follow the WHY system.
What I’ve Learned:
What makes someone a leader? I am always wondering what makes someone an inspirational leader. I relate to the saying that you can’t announce yourself as a leader – people will follow you if they believe in you and if you inspire them to action. This is the essence of real leadership. The concepts introduced in this book give you a glimpse of why we relate to and follow some, whereas others fail.
Have a clear understanding of what is your WHY. Filter all your decisions making and communication through your WHY. Consistency in this path is a key
Easily apply it in Real life. Especially to people who still trying to find their path in career or life. Although it is talking mainly about business and entrepreneurship, starting with WHY can be applied to any personal goal.
I have been following Sinek for a while now and I really like his passion and the ability to pitch an idea. Honestly – I don’t always agree with his point of view, but it is still fascinating to see a person who truly believes in a concept and goes all the way to promote it.
The book is basically a summary of lots of lectures and talks he has done over the years. So for me, it was more about refreshing the themes I already heard from Simon’s recordings.
People who are not familiar with his work will certainly find innovation in his concepts.
Who Should Read This Book:
If you are a business owner or just thinking about opening your own business, you should consider your WHY.
If you are beginning to build your path as a manager, or better – define yourself as an inspiring leader – check your WHY.
If you feel that you lost your purpose somehow in the place you are currently in – regain your WHY.
Even if you just need a way to figure out how to set goals for yourself and define what is success for you – read this book.