Summary of Start with Why

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Start with Why book summary

Editorial Rating

8

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  • Applicable

Recommendation

Entrepreneur Simon Sinek “hit rock bottom” in late 2005. He had started his own consulting business in 2002, but three years later, he ran out of passion. Dead-ended, Sinek thought about what made him happy. He wondered why some leaders and companies succeeded and others do not. He realized that inspirational leaders identify a purpose and follow it. The actions they take and what they make is secondary to achieving their mission. Sinek calls this leadership process the “Golden Circle”: It starts with a vision (the “Why”), then moves to implementation (the “How”), and then conquers the product or service (the “What”). Unfortunately, many leaders have this pattern backward. They first focus on what they do and how; then they try to differentiate their product based on price, quality or features. Although Sinek isn’t subtle about his message, getAbstract recommends his approach to executives, managers, leaders and those who seek to rediscover their passion.

About the Author

Simon Sinek is an optimist and adjunct member of the RAND Corporation. His book Start With Why expands on his popular TED Talk, “How great leaders inspire action.”

Summary

Inspirational Leadership

Regardless of size or industry, great leaders know the reasons that they do whatever they do. They follow their passion and have a vision they can articulate. In the early 1900s, several Americans wanted to be the first person to fly an airplane. Samuel Pierpont Langley was an educated, well-connected Harvard math professor with wealthy friends and a $50,000 government grant. Wilbur and Orville Wright had no education, no high-end connections and limited finances. On December 17, 1903, the Wright brothers made their dream come true. They started with their reason Why – their purpose – and inspired those around them. “There are leaders and those who lead.” Those who lead are more common, but real leaders motivate and inspire you.

“Manipulation Versus Inspiration”

Most sellers manipulate rather than inspire. Businesses influence customers by leveraging price, promotions, fear, peer pressure, aspirations and novelty. Such manipulation harvests short-term transactions, but it doesn’t earn long-term customer loyalty. Businesses say their customers choose them because they offer the best products or services at the right price. In reality...


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    8 months ago
    The best part of this book , in my opinion, is that it demystify the physics of being a leader , the challenge is to find your ‘why’ or embrace some one else’s one !
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    M. A. 3 years ago
    Attitude is everything, Simon hits the mark again!
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    A. 4 years ago
    A great book for consultants, sales people, leaders and anyone who is looking to inspire with their messaging - simply start with the "why" you do something and following with the "how" and "what", rather than how most people lead with the "what", "how", "why". Simon provides a simple exercise to drive home how compelling this approach can be as a differentiator.

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