Why Is ‘Why’ So Important?
by Rachel Strella
31 Jul 2016
People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. That’s the message of Simon Sinek’s Ted Talk, How Great Leaders Inspire Action. It’s a brilliant concept, yet few companies actually embrace it. Business focus is spent on product features or user benefits, rather than sharing what’s really important: what they believe and why.
At first, establishing a fundamental ‘why’ was challenging for us. A logical answer could be ‘to make money.’ But, just as we tell our clients about social media marketing, money is an outcome not a goal. It’s not a real why.
What’s my why? I started by asking myself why I started #Strella Social Media. Frankly, I started this business to be my own boss, although I realize that doesn’t sound very inspiring. So, I dug deeper – using the ‘5 whys’ to get to the real answer.
Why did I want to be my own boss? In past positions, I was not happy with company leadership. Why? They had high expectations, but they didn’t do their part to execute the goals. Why? They delegated it to me, so the assumption is that I can do all of it. But, I didn’t have the authority, so it made my work meaningless. Why? I wanted to deliver results but I was not the person responsible for the final execution. Why? Because I was not the boss!
Talk about an ‘ah ha’ moment. Knowing ‘the why’ helped us to draft our core values, which are more important than I realized.
As Simon said, “The goal is not to do business with everybody who needs what you have. The goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe.”
This explains why we were spinning our wheels. It seems nearly every business wants a social media manager, but few understand why and even fewer understand that, in order to deliver results, it must be a partnership. Social media managers can do the heavy lifting, but a business will not be successful with the ‘outsource it and forget it’ approach. Here’s what we discovered, though. Just like a boss that delegated work and failed to deliver on the execution, we were attracting businesses who thought they could hire a social media manager and never talk to us. Now that we are clear on who we are and what we believe, we are aligning with others who share our values.
So, why do I do what I do? Because I value communication, collaboration and reliability. We partner with our clients to execute a plan that will drive results and we deliver on-time, every time. Because, I am committed to getting the job done right. We take pride in delivering exceptional work and exceeding expectations. Because, I am relationship-driven. We value the relationships with our clients and colleagues and we are passionate about the opportunities to enhance relationships via social media.
People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.
What is YOUR why?