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Your Why Speaks Louder Than Your What

Being on the market means to deal with hundreds of competitors, offering the same service or product that you have. There is this thing called “competition” that defines your will how to present yourself and your unique value that differentiates you from the others. Fighting for attention, fighting for being first. It sounds challenging since others may try to keep or get you out of their way for their own desire of being better and the customer’s first choice.

But, let’s take a step back.

WHY are you doing what you are doing?

My question for you is, and it might sound a bit provocative, WHY did you enter the market? WHAT is your message?
And read it again. I am not asking, WHAT are you doing. But instead, I am asking, WHY are you offering your service. What is your message? – Your message that does not tell me WHAT, but WHY? Makes sense, right?
In a market that is predominantly about the WHAT you have to distinguish your WHY. And this is the (in my opinion only) reason, why Apple is successful: They always deliver the right message since the late 70’s to tell people WHY, instead of WHAT. Here is an example that a favourite author of mine, Simon Sinek, brought up:

The actual mp3 player was invented by the Singapore based company “Creative Technology Ltd”. Apple followed 22 months later with the iPod. And thus, Apple got the biggest piece of the market. Why? Read this and think of how it speaks to you:

“5GB mp3 player.”

“1.000 songs in your pocket.”

Both deliver the same message. Both are basically the same product. Which speaks more to you, though?

The message from Apple had the simplicity to make us understand what they want us to experience: a massive amount of our favourite music to listen to whenever we want. This is WHY we would need their iPod.
I basically have no idea how 5GB would feel or look like, so while the first message from Creative Technology Ltd. tells me facts, it does not tell me WHY, or otherwise appeal to me or most people, as history shows with the wild success of the iPod.

Further, Steve Jobs only hired people with the same kind of mindset. The same vision and the same spirit. Therefore, people with the same WHY.

Here we come to the point I wanted to make clear for you as a leader of anything in life, and either a leader of a company or a leader of a team within a company:

Share the same WHY!

No matter who you are dealing with in your daily businesses when it comes to everything in life, make sure those people share the same WHY, the same value with you. The meaning and purpose you give and share is the base of mutual understanding in relationships, and the future success of the company when operated within everyone’s own beliefs.
Picking up the Apple example above, the value proposition would be translated like this: You probably cannot convince an Apple user to buy a PC or the other way around, since it would not fit their values.

Shared values being reflected in your and your people’s WHY is the power behind the corporate strength you need to be competitive in the market. You, your employees and your team members will be driving in the fast lane, when pulling in the same direction – not through authority and demand, but through value and the WHY to get out of bed every morning.


>> Don’t keep your values and your WHY a secret – learn how to attract, hire and keep the right fit for your company’s mission. I am here for you!


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