What’s Your Why?
By Donna O’Toole
When it comes to the best leaders, it’s all about the Golden Circle
It’s not an unusual question. In fact, it’s become quite popular in recent years. Simon Sinek says that when it comes to the best leaders, it’s all about the Golden Circle. Carmine Gallo says it’s what ‘makes your heart sing’.
Top Tip: Knowing your why in business simply means knowing what you believe in, knowing what you stand for, and knowing what really makes you tick.
And I’ll give you a clue — your why is not money. Or at least it shouldn’t be. As Sinek explains, for the most inspirational leaders money is a necessity, of course it is, but it’s a by-product of what they do, it follows what they do, it’s not why they do it.
An accountant’s why might be the satisfaction that comes from relieving their clients’ stress and keeping their businesses on track by dealing with their tax returns. It’s unlikely to be the actual process of form-filling or calculating that makes their heart sing.
A teacher’s why might be seeing a young child’s mind and opportunities grow when they learn to read, or dance, or sing. It’s unlikely to be the thrill of instructing, marking, and assessing that makes them get out of bed each day.
And take what I do for example, I help people, businesses and brands to grow through winning awards and achieving valuable recognition.
Why? Well it’s not because I like to think strategically and commercially. Or because writing and communications are in my skill set. It’s not because my brain is bursting with all the tiny details of awards and recognition programmes. Or because I enjoy working with a team of creative and inspirational colleagues. Although these factors all help me carry out my work on a day to day basis…
No, what makes my heart sing is seeing the business leaders I work with grow and flourish as they start achieving their hopes, dreams, and goals.
It’s seeing the employees and brands I work with stand out from the competition and be recognised for their hard work — empowering them to give even more energy back to their people and projects.
It’s watching entrepreneurs come to terms with their self-growth, and focus on their own values to bring even greater benefit to everything they do.
My why is the thrill I get from helping others to aim for the moon and to catch a few stars along the way. It’s helping dreams to become a reality and seeing the opportunities grow and grow.
And knowing that I might have helped you identify your why, helped you achieve your goals, and helped you reach further and higher, that’s what makes my heart sing.
I believe everyone has the potential to achieve their dreams if they truly have the determination to do so, no matter what their age, race, gender or social status.
And I truly believe in the people I work with. I have to, or for me, I just can’t achieve my why, or help them to achieve theirs.
Top Tip: Knowing your why is the secret to achieving your goals.
So next time you apply for a new job, go for that big contract, or think about entering an award, ask yourself, ‘what’s my why?’ and believe me, you will find the answer that makes you memorable.
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