Book Review of ‘ Start with Why ’ by Simon Sinek.
New York 1900’s. Samuel Langley started with an ambitious mission to be the 1st person to fly an airplane. He had all the right ingredients – prestigious qualifications & work experience, great market conditions – well funded, best talent available, powerful contacts, media following his every move. Nearby in Ohio, Wilbur & Orville Wright were attempting something similar with money earned from bicycle shop proceeds. They did not have great formal education, no Funding or well known persons working for them.
Both Langley & Wright Brothers were pursuing the same goals and had strong work ethic. Obviously Wright brothers were the one to succeed in flying the 1st airplane, despite Langley being the one with all the resources. The difference in them was Wright brothers had a dream & believed they could change the world with their flying machine. Langley was only motivated by the fame to be the inventor, so he couldn’t inspire the people around him and also quit once Wright brothers succeeded rather than try and improve it further.
Washington, August 28th 1963. Martin Luther king Jr. gave the famous “I have a Dream” speech. There were no invitations sent & yet about a quarter Million people attended the historic event. There were plenty of charismatic speakers who knew what had to be done for civil rights in America. However, Martin Luther King Jr. was able to inspire as he started with ‘Why’ giving the “I have a Dream” speech and not action plan on what needs to be done.
This book by Simon Sinek ‘ Start with Why ’ emphasises on understanding & having the right reason for doing any activity be it at individual or organisational level. This leads to making decisions based on that “Why” and helps to inspire others to attain this greater cause.
Mr. Sinek further explains this by a concept he describes as ‘The Golden Circle’.
It talks about 3 things – What, How & Why.
In Business as well as in life, everyone knows ‘What’ they are doing.
Some people understand ‘How’ they are doing what they do.
However, very few people know ‘Why’ they do what they do.
That’s where all Great companies and individuals are differentiated from the good ones. Be it Wright brothers building their airplane or Martin Luther King Jr. who were able to inspire people by starting with their Whys & not What’s or How they are better. They inspired people by stating what they believe in, and then going about doing it.
Also, Simon Sinek has a great TED video on ‘Start with Why’ in which he emphasises these points. This book’s worth a read to understand how leaders are able inspire action and that happens when you ‘ Start with Why ’