Tag Archives: Simon Sinek

Start with Why

Today I attended “It Takes a Village to Create Change” conference where Simon Sinek did the keynote speech. The first part was basically his TED Talk contents with more emphasis on creating community with people who believe what you believe, and he talked about why you need to start with “why”, and not “how” or “what”. I have seen his TED Talk multiple times prior to today, but I still found it very energizing and inspiring.

The second part was a Q & A session and he became even more lively and engaging as soon as he opened the floor to take questions from the audience. Someone asked his thoughts about President Obama and the recent election results; He won the presidential election two years ago by effectively communicating “Why” with the voters, and yet, it appears that he might have lost his way as evident from the most recent election results. Simon replied that it seems like President Obama does not trust that communicating his “why” is enough. Moreover, Simon speculates that because President Obama, with his college professor-like intelligence and knowledge, likes to try convincing people with facts and figures (which is the “What” in Simon’s golden circle), he keeps getting sucked into the argument over the details. Simon reflected how he would have started out the President’s speech to push through a health care bill. He demonstrated how reversing the order of WHAT-HOW-WHY to WHY-HOW-WHAT, as explained in the video clip above, would have been much more effective in inspiring people to agree with him on his health care plan. It was beautiful and very powerful. Even before Simon finished his spontaneously-created health care speech, someone yelled out from the audience, “I’m in!”, meaning that they are sold on to that idea.

Simon also explained that people need to find a way to put words in their “why” to inspire other people, which is not an easy task. He also added that once you find your “why” and a way to articulate it, it is necessary to surround yourself with reminders of your “why”, because people tend to forget as the time goes by, or the organization or business grows, or circumstances change. After finishing his speech and Q & A session which lasted for over 100 minutes, I was able to speak with him briefly one on one. He kindly agreed to say a few words in front of my camera about his own “Why”.

サイモン・シネックのメッセージ

先日の「優れたリーダーは『なぜ』から始める」で書いた会議がサンディエゴで行われました。”Start with Why”の著者であるサイモン・シネックは100分にわたり、基調講演と質疑応答を行いました。自分自身は子どももいないし、家族もいないので、主に子どもを育てる手法や環境がテーマのこの会議に招かれたことは光栄でした・・という言葉からスピーチを始めたサイモンは、『なぜ』から始めることがどうして大切なのか、そして自分の信じることを信じる人々を見つけること、そういった人たちから成るコミュニティを創ることの大切さを情熱的に語っていました。

特に秀逸だったのが質疑応答です。実際にどのように人々の「なぜ」を見つける手助けをするのか、参加者をモデルにしてやって見せたり、オバマ大統領が2年前にはあれだけの大差で選ばれながら、数日前にあった選挙ではなぜあのような結果になったのかという彼なりの結論(現在は「なぜ」でなく「何を」に焦点をあててしまっているから)を説明していました。実際に自分なら国民健康保険の法案を通すためのスピーチをどのように始めたか、ということを、「なぜ」から始める形で実際にデモンストレーションしたのです。これには会場から感嘆のため息がもれたほどでした。

この機会に、サイモン自身の「なぜ」について話してくれるよう頼んだところ、快く応じてくれました。97%もの人が今やっている仕事から満足感を得られていないという数字について言及した上で、サイモンは、自分の話で人々をインスパイアすることによって、もっと多くの人が自分のやっていることをただ単に「好き」なだけでなく、「情熱をもって」できるような世の中にしたい、そのために組織にもっと働きかけたいと話しています。サイモンのスピーチの後にも、ペアレンティングのスキルを学べるワークショップがあり、とても刺激になった一日でした。