Simon Sinek – Start With Why (Tedx Talks)

In his Tedx Talk, Start With Why – How Great Leaders Inspire Action, Simon Sinek emphasizes the importance of knowing your why. Using Apple as an example, Simon breaks down how their Why, How, and then What, model is marketed and implemented to inspire the world. Rather than promoting just their specs, and what’s so great about their products (their What), Apple shifts the focus by emphasizing their “why” to attract the hearts of the world. example in order-

  1. The Why “Everything we do we believe in challenging the status quo, we believe in thinking differently..”
  2. The How- “..the way that we challenge the status quo is by making our products beautifully design simple to use and user friendly..”
  3. The What – “..We just happen to make computers, wanna buy one?”

“People don’t buy WHAT you do, people buy WHY you do it.”

I will now break down a sort of mantra if you will, my set of three C’s. Connection, Community & Creativity. For this assignment I will explain how I’ve instilled these 3 C’s into my personal Why, How, and What, and how it pertains to my idea of passion, fulfillment and  creating a successful career in business.

Perhaps starting with Why would make for an obvious direction, but for the purpose of this presentation, I’ll start with my What. Creativity. Art and innovation. Articulating, you. Any way in which you choose to self express. I choose to express myself through music, playing my ukulele, writing poetry, spoken word pieces, journal, photography, martial arts, and fashion. Upon analyzing my past looking for strengths, I believe my involvement in creative activity has given me a slight edge in experiences that call for innovation. I intentionally express myself through various forms. I intentionally try to perceive the world around me in as many ways possible.

The second C, Connection. Is my How. The vessels in which way I can connect with those around me. I have an innate characteristic, and compassion, where I naturally lean towards uplifting those around me when needed. My closest friends can vouch for me. I listen, with intent. But I’ve always had this conflicting persona about myself. I was outgoing in front with my friends, but extremely shy in public settings. I wanted to change that. So I went ahead and applied for Nordstrom. At Nordstrom, I spent 2 1/2 years approaching, communicating, persuading and achieving connection with random people day in and day out. My passion grew from my natural ability to connect and be compassionate for others combining with the people skills I’ve developed in sales. The combination of skill and passion helped guide me back to school to further my studies in Business and Marketing.

My third and final C. My Why. Community. Growing up as a Filipino immigrant raised in the inner-city of Lakewood, I became attracted to the gang lifestyle at the age of 14. I didn’t have a close relationship with my parents growing up, so the neighborhood played a big influence on my upbringing. I looked up to the neighborhood gangs as my childhood heroes, and at that age they seemed like warriors wearing their bandannas as flags of honor, fighters of city, I wanted to be just like them. I was always getting into fights, gotten jumped a few times, started smoking and drinking, suspended multiple times. 14 years old. But the weird thing was I was very polite, very kind. very goofy. but whenever I was challenged by other kids, I had to show them I had heart. It was the only life that I knew. I became a product of my environment.

But after those years of trouble, my parents made enough money and I had the opportunity to move into to the suburbs of Puyallup, and my life began to shift towards the better. Recently I ran into one of my old friends from Lakewood. I was working, and there he was trying to steal one of our fragrances at my Nordstrom. It hit me then. I hadn’t seen him in 7 years, and we were in totally different positions in life. But you know what, who knows what he could’ve been if he had the same opportunities as I did to change my environment? Although I’m much wiser now, I’ll never forget where I came from. And if I can from where I was then to where I’m at now, I wonder what could happen with the many youth in our communities facing these adversities, if they had that chance to get out their environment?

My Creativity will most certainly lead me towards coming up with the What, in regards to my future business ventures. Maybe it’ll be in fashion merchandise, or some sort of tech innovation, or perhaps something to deal with sustainability inventions. So long as it utilizes, promotes, self expression, innovation and creative artistry. My natural and learned skills in driving Connection will be used to promote, my What. My further education in marketing and understanding how to create connection with audience will continue to sharpen and provide opportunities, and guidance, to where my next destination shall be. My Community, is my Why. My why is my constant. My passion. To be at a level to inspire leadership and possibly provide opportunity to those in the communities who need it the most, the ones who faced similar adversity, and the ones facing much more. My Why, is driving factor of why I strive to do what I do. My Why, is what makes me hungry for exceeding in achieving my goals. My Why, is what will eventually lead me towards greatness.


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