“Start with Why “ by Simon Sinek: My Reflections By Amal Sanderatne

“Very few people or companies can clearly articulate WHY they do WHAT they do…By WHY I mean what is your purpose, cause or belief? WHY does your company exist? WHY do you get out of bed every morning? And WHY should anyone care?”

 “People don’t buy WHAT you do, they buy WHY you do it.”

Extracts from Simon Sinek’s Ted Talk “How Great Leaders Inspire Action”

Inspired by these words I’ve been trying to improve Frontier’s purpose statement in relation to it, to incorporate WHY Frontier exists, but found it quite difficult to pin down one clear reason.

Then, I read the book. Though it was badly written and very repetitiveit was only after reading the book, with its specific examples that I understood the reason why articulating it was so hard and in fact that it is not important to “directly” put it into a grand “purpose statement”.

The companies highlighted as having a great “WHY”in his book, use it inherently, but don’t really have it in their “purpose” statements. This understanding, did not come directly from the book but after I actually researched further into it.

The real message for me is the importance of communicating your “WHY” in different ways as opposed just having it written in a document, giving it primacy in your communication and with that taking the actions (the HOW’s) needed to realize the “WHY”.

Even in the book and the video, it is not about expressing it as a “purpose” but rather as your “Belief”. My own view is that the words “Why/Purpose” is also often misinterpreted and thus have to be careful in making “WHY” a “Purpose”

In a small segment of the book, he talks about where this fits in a public declaration

“The vision is the public statement of the founder’s intent, WHY the company exists. It is literally the vision of a future that does not yet exist. The mission statement is a description of the route, the guiding principles—HOW the company intends to create that future.”

Thus for me, what I could try to say is I that I believe in the primary value of time as our most precious and finite resource. Therefore, I believe that anyone dealing with me or Frontier should be making the best use of their time. And we must strive to ensure that this belief is reflected in our HOWs (the way we do things) and that this is communicated properly to all stakeholders.

Please refer to my next blog post which explains Sinek’s concept in detail, aided by examples from the book for a better understanding of this concept.

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