The Power of Starting with ‘Why’

The Power of Starting with ‘Why’

Written by Angie Harms, Shocklogic

As humans, our individual values shape everything we do. Whether we realise it or not, we speak from our values in every conversation we have and every message we send. But how do we know what our values are? How can we make sure that our work and our lives align with the ideals that are important to us?

A good place to start is by asking the question ‘why?’. Why do you get out of bed in the morning? Why do you do what you do? Why does your company exist? And why should anyone care?

The practice of pursuing clarity in the answers to these questions is a simple but life-changing idea that comes from a fantastic book by Simon Sinek called Start With Why.

Everyone knows WHAT they do, and most people know HOW they do it. But for many of us, things start to get fuzzy when we try to explain our purpose. Sinek shows us that our ‘why’ is actually the heart of everything we do, and that understanding it is the key to both feeling fulfilled in your own life and inspiring others.

Your ‘why’ connects to the deepest part of yourself. It is your ‘why’ that makes you unique and interesting as an individual. If you ‘start with why’ when you communicate, it becomes much more likely that people will take an interest in you and truly listen to what you have to say.

The same is true in business. It is your product’s ‘why’ that makes it special. People will be much more likely to buy into a product, movement, or idea if they understand the ‘why’ behind it.

Your ‘why’ isn’t as simple as making a profit, earning a living, or providing for your family. There are a million ways to do those things. You end up on a particular path for a particular reason. When things are going well, you are passionate about your career and enjoy going to work every day, but many people, at some point in their lives, experience a loss of enthusiasm or a feeling of burnout. This is an indication that you need to reconnect with your ‘why’.

Your ‘why’ can change over the course of time, and you may have more than one ‘why’ for different activities and aspects of your life, but it is worth taking the time and effort to learn about yourself in this regard. Knowing your ‘why’ – and keeping an eye on how it changes – is the key to staying passionate about your work, your career, and your life.

At Shocklogic, we define ourselves as a value-centred company. Our values encourage perseverance, growth, and integrity and allow us to create a common language based on kindness, compassion, and mutual support. These values are the heart and soul of the company, and they are built into every aspect of our products and services. They are the reason we have such a vibrant, passionate team, and they ensure that we never lose sight of why we do what we do.

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Whether learning languages or teaching them, travelling the world or curled up in her favourite chair with her nose stuck in a book, underlying everything has been Angie’s obsession with the power of words. She’s edited several novels, proofread many PhDs, and curated the fiction floor of the largest bookshop in Scotland. Now she write copy for a big-hearted events technology company, Shocklogic.

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