Simon Sinek is a British-American author, motivational speaker and organizational consultant. He is the author of five books, including Start With Why. Simon Sinek’s first TEDx talk from 2009 is now the 3rd most watched TED talk of all time. He has a goal to help build a world in which the vast majority of people wake up every single day feeling inspired, feel safe at work, and feel fulfilled at the end of the day. Here are our favorite quotes from Sinek:
“If you want to inspire others, always communicate your why first.” Every company in the world knows what they do, which is why it’s the first thing they tell people about. But rationale is a weak way of trying to get people to make buying decisions, probably the weakest of them all. That’s because emotions trump reason every time. When we make a decision based on a strong why, we own it! Great leaders naturally get this right by starting all communication with why they do things, eventually followed by how they do things until finally revealing what it is they actually do.
“Hire people for their cause, not their craft, and watch your business bloom.” The best businesses are built by excited employees. Which business wouldn’t want their employees to go above and beyond for the company’s success? The way you do it is by building your business around a cause, and then assembling people who share your why.
“Loyalty is when people are willing to turn down a better product or a better price to continue doing business with you.” The more you can focus on why you do what you do and can clearly communicate that to your customers, the more loyalty you’ll create. Repeat customers spend up to 67 percent more than new customers. Customers remember when they’re treated well, and they normally tell their friends and family.
“For values or guiding principles to be truly effective they have to be verbs.” Sinek points out that it’s not “integrity”, it’s “always do the right thing.” It’s not “innovation,” it’s “look at the problem from a different angle.” Verbs paint the picture of what action needs to be taken to fulfill the value or principle. Not only do they then become actionable, but they become measurable.
“The role of a leader is not to come up with all the great ideas. The role of a leader is to create an environment in which great ideas can happen.” Many times, leaders solve problems through domination or compromise, resulting in less-than-inventive solutions. Great leaders use integration, like combining option A and option B, to create a new and better option.They are also patient enough to let great ideas from people in all parts of the organization develop. Additionally, they must ensure a sense of urgency and clear parameters to allow decision making to actually occur.