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Start with Why
Cover of Start with Why
Start with Why
How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

The inspiring, life-changing bestseller by the author of LEADERS EAT LAST and TOGETHER IS BETTER.
In 2009, Simon Sinek started a movement to help people become more inspired at work, and in turn inspire their colleagues and customers. Since then, millions have been touched by the power of his ideas, including more than 28 million who've watched his TED Talk based on START WITH WHY — the third most popular TED video of all time.

Sinek starts with a fundamental question: Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty from customers and employees alike? Even among the successful, why are so few able to repeat their success over and over?

People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers had little in common, but they all started with WHY. They realized that people won't truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the WHY behind it.

START WITH WHY shows that the leaders who've had the greatest influence in the world all think, act, and communicate the same way — and it's the opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek calls this powerful idea The Golden Circle, and it provides a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired. And it all starts with WHY.

The inspiring, life-changing bestseller by the author of LEADERS EAT LAST and TOGETHER IS BETTER.
In 2009, Simon Sinek started a movement to help people become more inspired at work, and in turn inspire their colleagues and customers. Since then, millions have been touched by the power of his ideas, including more than 28 million who've watched his TED Talk based on START WITH WHY — the third most popular TED video of all time.

Sinek starts with a fundamental question: Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty from customers and employees alike? Even among the successful, why are so few able to repeat their success over and over?

People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers had little in common, but they all started with WHY. They realized that people won't truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the WHY behind it.

START WITH WHY shows that the leaders who've had the greatest influence in the world all think, act, and communicate the same way — and it's the opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek calls this powerful idea The Golden Circle, and it provides a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired. And it all starts with WHY.
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  • From the book 1
    ASSUME YOU KNOW
    On a cold January day, a forty-three-year-old man was
    sworn in as the chief executive of his country. By his side
    stood his predecessor, a famous general who, fi fteen years
    earlier, had commanded his nation's armed forces in a war
    that resulted in the defeat of Germany. The young leader
    was raised in the Roman Catholic faith. He spent the next
    fi ve hours watching parades in his honor and stayed up
    celebrating until three o'clock in the morning.
    You know who I'm describing, right?

    It's January 30, 1933, and I'm describing Adolf Hitler and not,
    as most people would assume, John F. Kennedy.
    The point is, we make assumptions. We make assumptions
    about the world around us based on sometimes incomplete or false
    information. In this case, the information I offered was incomplete.
    Many of you were convinced that I was describing John F. Kennedy
    until I added one minor little detail: the date.

    This is important because our behavior is affected by our assumptions
    or our perceived truths. We make decisions based on
    what we think we know. It wasn't too long ago that the majority of
    people believed the world was fl at. This perceived truth impacted behavior.
    During this period, there was very little exploration. People
    feared that if they traveled too far they might fall off the edge
    of the earth. So for the most part they stayed put. It wasn't until
    that minor detail was revealed—the world is round—that behaviors
    changed on a massive scale. Upon this discovery, societies
    began to traverse the planet. Trade routes were established; spices
    were traded. New ideas, like mathematics, were shared between societies
    which unleashed all kinds of innovations and advancements.
    The correction of a simple false assumption moved the human race
    forward.

    Now consider how organizations are formed and how decisions
    are made. Do we really know why some organizations succeed and
    why others don't, or do we just assume? No matter your defi nition
    of success—hitting a target stock price, making a certain amount
    of money, meeting a revenue or profi t goal, getting a big promotion,
    starting your own company, feeding the poor, winning public
    offi ce—how we go about achieving our goals is very similar. Some
    of us just wing it, but most of us try to at least gather some data so
    we can make educated decisions. Sometimes this gathering process
    is formal—like conducting polls or market research. And
    sometimes it's informal, like asking our friends and colleagues for
    advice or looking back on our own personal experience to provide
    some perspective. Regardless of the process or the goals, we all want
    to make educated decisions. More importantly, we all want to make
    the right decisions.

    As we all know, however, not all decisions work out to be the
    right ones, regardless of the amount of data we collect. Sometimes
    the impact of those wrong decisions is minor, and sometimes it can
    be catastrophic. Whatever the result, we make decisions based on a
    perception of the world that may not, in fact, be completely accurate.
    Just as so many were certain that I was describing John F.
    Kennedy at the beginning of this section. You were certain you were
    right. You might even have bet money on it—a behavior based on
    an assumption. Certain, that is, until I offered that little detail of
    the date.

    Not only bad decisions are made on false assumptions. Sometimes
    when things go right, we think we know why, but do we really?
    That the result went the way you wanted does not mean...
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How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
Simon Sinek
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