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Book Review & Summary: 'Start With Why' by Simon Sinek

Book Review & Summary: Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action" by Simon Sinek: Belief first, unity of knowledge and action.
Book Review & Summary: "Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action" by Simon Sinek: Belief first, unity of knowledge and action

This book articulates a "Start with Why" and "Why to What" mindset - any external behavior pattern is determined by internal values.

Everyone knows what they "do" (WHAT);
some people know how they do it (HOW);
very few people understand their "why" (WHY) to do it.

And only those who start from the "why" (WHY) are most likely to change everything.

Maybe you are a college graduate who has just entered society and is longing for and confused about the future; maybe you are a professional who has been working for many years and wants to change track but has encountered many difficulties; The backbone of the workplace who has small achievements on the road and wants to go to the next level, but it is difficult to breakthrough...

You want to change, to get better, but you can't find the way, sometimes it's like a fist on cotton. In fact, many times it is not that you do not work hard or that your method is wrong, but that your thinking needs to be upgraded.

Simon Sneek, in his book "Start with Why", proposed a rule of the golden circle, which consists of three concentric circles, from the inside to the outside: why-how-what. This mode is also known as the Jobs thinking mode because of the use of Steve Jobs.

The book "Start with Why" gives an interesting example: Apple and Dell both started out by producing computers, but over time, the two companies have developed differently. Everyone knows the iPod produced by Apple, but how many people know that Dell and HP have also introduced MP3? Why can Apple achieve revolutionary breakthroughs in many fields, while other giant companies such as Microsoft and IBM are limited to their own areas of expertise?

Answers It's because Apple was started by WHY. At the beginning of its establishment, Apple answered the meaning of its company's establishment and birth (and Jobs' life ideal) - changing the world.

This is the value of Apple, many excellent competitors, may have enough financial resources to produce excellent equipment and products, can have a more sufficient budget for marketing, and even do better than Apple in details and services. But it is difficult to have a company that can start from the "why" It is more popular than Apple.

I recall my experience of traveling to more than ten countries with a backpack during my summer vacation in college. I received a lot of interviews and told a lot of experiences. I hope my peers can experience it through long-distance travel. A different world. But there are still so few people around who can really go out and take a look.

I have concluded that what they lack is the accumulation of successful experience. Because of the lack of accumulation, they lose confidence when encountering difficulties and setbacks. I do not believe that I can overcome all difficulties and travel alone.

But now that I think about it, there may be another crucial factor. They lack a belief, a reason why they have to go. It is precisely because I answered my "why" that I was able to walk between the heavens and the earth at the most passionate age. It is precisely because I know WHY I am not afraid of risks and firmly walk on the road of my expectations.

I hope that friends can also "start from why" and refuse to walk in the crowd with blurred faces!

Book: Start with Why by Simon Sinek


About the Author: Start with Why by Simon Sinek

Leader in Philosophy of Leadership
  • Internationally renowned advertising professionals
  • Founder of Sinek Partners Marketing Consulting Company
Simon Sinek discovered this very simple, yet very powerful, golden circle rule. This law reveals why some businesses and individuals are so successful and so inspiring.

From the Pentagon to the United Nations to Hollywood, Snek has been invited to speak to people across the United States and around the world, explaining the power of the Golden Circle.

He has consulted for many leaders and organizations, including small businesses and entrepreneurs, as well as large corporations like Microsoft, nonprofits, governments, and politicians; his views are frequently quoted in major newspapers and magazines.

At the same time, Sneck also teaches in Columbia University's Strategic Communications Program. When not living in hotels, he lives in New York.

For more details on how to find your "why", and how to put your ideas into practice, visit

You can also read Simon's blog post at

Simon Sinek: Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action 

Great talks are moving: I was moved today when I watched Simon Sinek's TED talk. The last talk that moved me so much was Julia Engelmann's "Improvisational Poetry" at Poetry Slam. Today, I think about the theme of the talk by Simon Sinek - ask more why.

Simon Sinek's "Start with Why" Ted Talk

1. Positive logic: WHY→HOW→WHAT

Simon believes that the real logic of things (that is, positive logic) should be from WHY to HOW to WHAT. Everyone in the world knows WHAT, that is, what they are doing; some people know HOW that is, how to do it well; only a few people know WHY, that is, why they are doing it.


Most people do things according to the opposite logic. Take computer sales, for example, they generally sell their products like this: Look at our new computer (WHAT), we have fast processors, cheap computers, and simple operation. (HOW). With such a worded salesperson, how likely are you to be impressed and buy this computer? - At least I have to think about it.

2. Why is Apple so innovative?

Persuasive people or things follow positive logic. Take the familiar Apple company as an example: Apple's goal is to always maintain technological innovation (WHY), and they want customers to have products with great experience, easy operation, and beautiful design (HOW), just now they have made a computer called iMac (WHAT). If Apple's salespeople follow this logic, customers are far more likely to be impressed, deeply agreed with Apple's philosophy, and pay for the product than in the previous article.

3. Why am I moved by Simon Sinek's speech?

When we are moved, the persuasion content at the level of why (WHY) and how to do it (HOW) mainly involves the human limbic brain (Limbic brain), which actually manipulates human beings to make a series of decisions; and (WHAT) level The content of human's neocortex is responsible for the human neocortex. Although the neocortex can read data, graphics, and language, it cannot make perceptual judgments.


In Simon Sinek's speech, he not only told us what positive logic is (WHAT) but also explained how a few people and companies have used positive logic to succeed (HOW) and told us why positive logic works so well in biology Academic Explanation (WHY). At the same time, during the speech, Simon's urgent tone, vivid expression, and tense speed of speech all made people feel his desire and necessity to convey his ideas: even if his ideas have not been spoken, or the arguments have not been completed, Or even before we checked his logic, we were already moved by his expressions and language, and even the cases that were close to life.

4. A great speech must arouse “curiosity”

A great speech requires not only rigorous logic, but also urgency to the audience: we must know the answer to the WHY, and we must participate in the process of inquiry, but this is not the same as brainwashing. Brainwashing awakens more of human biological instincts, and the "urgency" brought by great speeches awakens more of human intellect - the natural curiosity that makes us ask "WHY".

Book Summary: Start with Why by Simon Sinek 

The whole book repeatedly discusses its "Golden Circle" theory through a large number of examples. The author's writing is good, although it feels wordy to read. But it still inspires sales and business.

Golden Circle "Golden Circle", is the picture that this book repeatedly demonstrates. Golden Circle: From the inside to the outside, it is Why Why-How-How-What-What. Among them, Why is the core, to understand the value of existence and the goal of struggle. The order of doing things and communicating should be from the inside out. What is displayed externally, while why and how are internal. why are the belief and spirit; How is the method and action, the way and method to bring why to life; what is the result, what is the specific product and language communication.  

1. There are only two types of human behavior: manipulation and incentives.

2. Commercially speaking, the manipulation includes price, promotion, fear, aspirational messages, partner pressure, and novelty. However, through manipulation, it can bring orders and repeat customers, but it is difficult to bring loyal customers.

3. Golden Circle can be combined with "first principles" and Taoism as a tool for thinking and problem-solving.

4. The LIMBIC BRAIN "limbic system" in the human brain is an ancient deep structure in the nervous system, which controls emotions and feelings including loyalty and trust, and is also responsible for making choices. But this part does not control language and thinking analysis. The analysis of language and thinking is carried out by the neocortex NEOCORTEX. This explains why it is difficult for us to articulate our feelings for a person. Because emotion is the feeling that the "limbic system" is responsible for, and the neocortex is responsible for speaking. Intuitive choices are always quick, and rational choices are always hard to make.

5. The author extends why to artistic intuition, dreams, worldview, values, the meaning of life, direction, and attitude. Thinking that artistic intuition can be explained scientifically (for this, contrast 'thinking, fast and slow'). Use why to form a sense of community and belonging. Belonging brings trust. The sense of trust these are responsible for the "limbic brain" of the human brain. Therefore, a word from a trusted person is better than theoretical data and research reports.

6. Clarity of why, the discipline of how consistency of what.   The three levels should be unified, and the author's image is expressed as a celery test. Clear beliefs, unity of knowledge and action, consistent with words and deeds.

7. You don't lie to your own doctor, and you can't lie to your own employees. Find employees who are consistent in their beliefs, and self-consciousness, and motivate them, and the skills will grow from scratch. Instead of looking for employees with skills and inconsistent beliefs.

8. The role of leaders is not to come up with all the great ideas. The role of a leader is to create an environment in which great ideas can happen. Idea attention is at the How to level. The key to leadership is to master and represent the why level. As long as why the level is grasped, it will lead the masses to produce various ideas to solve problems and achieve goals. The corporate culture is the -why level, the professional manager is the How-solution level, and the employees are the what-execution level.

9. Diffusivity. People's acceptance of new products can be divided into four categories: early adopters, early majority, late majority, and laggards. The proportion of the population can be distributed from left to right in a sinusoidal curve. But these four groups have a diffusion relationship, an influence, and an influenced relationship. Most companies look directly at most customers, ignoring the influence of early adopters.

10. Leader charisma. Exuberant energy can be driven for a short period of time, and charm comes from motivation (stimulation and infection). Charisma is not the same as energy. Charisma comes from the clear values of clarity why, from a firm belief, a firm belief in ideals that surpass selfishness and self. This belief is clear and consistent.

11. Pay attention to language transmission. Values are clear, and methods of action are in line with values. It is also necessary to express it loudly and clearly, so as to unite employees internally, influence the market externally, and gather loyal customer groups. Because of why, how, and what is controlled by different regions in the human brain. Therefore, it is difficult to express the different value propositions of an organization, so it is necessary to use: flags, slogans, logos, and stories. Resonate echoes in the vast market through the loudspeaker megaphone.

12. Celery test: The author expresses that communication is not about what you say, but what others hear. Use a story to illustrate this point. For example, if you are preparing dinner, if you ask others for their opinions, you may receive all kinds of suggestions. You go to the supermarket to buy ingredients, and you also buy all kinds of ingredients. But if you advocate healthy living, you will buy celery. In this way, when others see the celery you bought, they also know that you are a person who cares about health.

13. Being successful vs Feeling Successful. Some companies feel successful, but not necessarily in a successful state. Just reached the achievement (achievement), but may also be in decline. Being successful is an inner state.

14. Why is the starting point of everything, why are the spirit and soul, if an enterprise loses why, only what is left, like skin without a soul.

15. The last question to ask yourself: What is your Why? How to articulate, how to show discipline in how, how to see consistency in what?

Book Review: Start with Why by Simon Sinek

What is Start with Why a book about?

Start with Why, subtitled How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, is a book about how great leaders think, act, and communicate. These great leaders include such extraordinary companies and leaders as Apple, Harley-Davidson, Southwest Airlines, Martin Luther King, John F. Kennedy, and more.

The author Simon Sinek, a graduate of anthropology, engaged in corporate strategy consulting, inspired by his own entrepreneurial experience, creatively proposed the "Golden Circle Rule" of how to think, act and communicate, arousing people's awareness of this Rethinking and enthusiasm for the problem, and as a result, he has become a leadership consultant for Microsoft, the US Department of Defense, American Express, and the United Nations. His "Golden Circle Rule" speech ranked third on TED.

Why should I read this book?

Last year, when my entrepreneurial team was in the stage of business transformation from 0 to 1, my partners studied this book together in order to better discuss the future direction. Based on the "Golden Circle Rule", we found the "why" we initially agreed with. , it was a very difficult and unforgettable time. The hard part is realizing how difficult it is to reach a real consensus; the unforgettable part is the rare experience of letting go of your professional mask and being honest with yourself and others.

At the beginning of this year, with the confusion and thinking about the experience of community entrepreneurship in the past year or more, I launched the "21-day community theme reading camp" in Leimond's [Learning Community for Community Operators], a total of After reading the two books "Start with Why" and "Rebuilding the Organization", the purpose is to learn to build the bottom-level thinking of the community, conduct community experiments based on the real connection between people, and get to know the partners who love the community. More than 10 post-70s, post-80s, and post-90s partners shared their different interpretations and tasted a completely different taste from before.

Who is this book suitable for?

If you want to inspire others, inspire them, inspire them, and inspire passion in their hearts, whether it's through improved leadership, enhanced corporate culture or better products, better marketing, and service, this book is all about it. suits you. Likewise, if you want to rediscover yourself and try to arouse enthusiasm in your heart, this book will give you a lot of inspiration.

What questions will this article answer?

  1. What is the Golden Circle Rule?
  2. How does the Golden Circle Rule work?
  3. How to use the golden circle rule?
  4. What challenges does the Golden Circle rule face?

1. What is the Golden Circle Rule? 

01 Mindset on how to think, act and communicate

The Golden Circle is a way of thinking about how to think, act, and communicate that great leaders use to think about the problem as three concentric circles.
  • The outermost circle is " what to do ", for example, what products the company sells, what services it provides, and what do you do in the company.
  • The middle circle is the " how ", as some companies claim they have a "differentiated value proposition", "proprietary process", "unique sales model", etc. Usually, it says why something is different from others. the same, or why is it better.
  • The innermost circle is " why ", which refers to what is the reason for our actions, what is the purpose of our essence, what is our belief, why does our company exist, why do I get up every morning, why do others care about our ideas, etc.
Most teams and individuals approach things and communicate from the outside in, that is, from the “what” to the “why.” And the companies and leaders who inspire, inspire, and inspire enthusiasm in people start with the “why.”

02 What attracts people to buy is "why did you do it" 

Take Apple, the most innovative company with a fanatical fan culture today. If Apple were like most companies, their marketing message would be from the outside in, like this:

The computers we make are amazing. (doing what)
They are particularly beautiful in appearance, easy to operate, and very user-friendly. (How)
Want to buy one?

As we often hear in car sales ads:

This is our new model. (doing what)
The car has leather seats, low fuel consumption, and offers discounted car loans. (How)
Would you like to try it?

The logic behind these communications is that propagandists are trying to convince others that something is different or more valuable.

But what Apple actually does is this:

Everything we do challenges the status quo. We love to be different. (why)
Our approach to challenging the status quo is to use a beautiful design that makes the product easy to operate and user-friendly. (How)
The computers we make are amazing. (doing what)
Want to buy one?

This feeling is different. Apple's message starts with a reason, an intention, and a belief that has nothing to do with what they "do." The things they do (their products, from computers to small electronic devices) are no longer reasons to buy, but concrete proofs of the company's philosophy.

This example proves that it is not "what you do" that attracts people to buy, but "why you do it".

Apple's "why," which is to challenge the status quo and empower individuals, has developed a pattern that is repeated in everything the company says and does. It's in the iPod, it's in iTunes, it's in computers and phones, it's in so many areas it's been involved and disrupted. It's the "why" that makes Apple so flexible and innovative.

Companies that don't understand the "why" can't. When a team defines itself in terms of "what do I do", it limits itself to death, it can only do this.

For example, Gateway has been selling LCD TVs since 2003, and it is absolutely qualified to manufacture and sell computers. However, the company could not find a proper position in the consumer electronics brand. After two years, it finally gave up and turned to "return to its core business."

Dell launched the PDA in 2002 and the MP3 in 2003, but each market lasted only a few years. Dell's products are of good quality and fully capable of doing them. But the problem is that they use "what do I do" to define themselves. They make computers, so people naturally feel that there is no reason to buy MP3s from Dell, and it feels awkward.

Just as a product is the embodiment of a company's "why," which brand or product to choose is a reflection of an individual's "why."

Simply saying that a product is better (even with rational evidence) does inspire consumers to desire it and even make them decide to buy, but it does not create customer loyalty.

If customers have deep identification and desire, rather than being manipulated (such as due to price wars, promotions, fear, inflammatory rhetoric, etc.), then they will find out why they bought it. This one is better.

Loyalty is inspired by the idea and mission of this company, this brand, this product, this person, and the "why".

Knowing the "why" isn't the only way to succeed. But it's the only way to go if you want long-term success, richer innovation, and more flexibility.

03 The Golden Circle comes from our biological instincts 

If you look at the sulci and gyri of the human brain, you will find that, from outside to inside, the three levels of the golden circle correspond precisely to the three cortices of the brain.
  • The outermost neocortex of the human brain, which corresponds to "what to do", is responsible for rational thinking, analysis, and language.
  • The two layers in the middle called the limbic brain, are responsible for our emotions, such as trust and loyalty. It is also responsible for all human behavior and decision-making processes, but it has no language ability.
When we communicate from the inside out, we are speaking directly to the areas of the brain that control decision-making, and the cortex responsible for language allows us to justify those decisions.

The part of the brain that controls emotion has no language ability. It is this "break" that makes it difficult for us to express our emotions in words and to explain the reasons behind our decisions. That's why we use the word "feeling" to explain our intuitive decisions. Because of this, we look for more specific factors as reasons, such as design, service, and brand. This creates a false assumption that price and performance are very important. These factors do work, they give us concrete evidence to support our decisions, but they don’t point the way, inspire, inspire, or arouse enthusiasm in our hearts.

2. How does the Golden Circle Rule work?

For the Golden Circle to work, the "why," "how," and "what to do" aspects need to be balanced and in the right order.

01 The "why" comes from the retrospective and should be clear 

How can we figure out the "why"? Finding the "why" is a process of discovery, not invention. The "why" comes from a retrospective, and its starting point is yourself. Henry Ford said, "Whether you think you can do it or you can't, you're right." The first quality a super motivator needs are insight, trusting your intuition, and being honest about your purpose and beliefs in life. Figuring out the "why" isn't the hardest part, all teams start with a "why". The hardest part is being thoroughly balanced and sincere, and only great teams can keep this philosophy clear year after year. Teams that forget why they exist, take to the runway every day to outdo others, not themselves. No one wants to help you when you are competing with others. Others will help you only when you are competing with yourself. If you follow your ideas, others will follow you. Together, these people can change the world.

02 "How to do" must have a code of conduct 

Once you've figured out the "why," the question becomes: what should I do? The "how" refers to a set of principles that guide you and allow you to turn your ideas into reality. The "how" is reflected in the team's systems, processes and culture. The hardest part is developing a code of conduct that never strays from the ideal and doing things according to it. What makes this process even more difficult is that it is only when the values or code of conduct are expressed in actionable terms that we have a clear idea of how to act. A good code of conduct is not "integrity", but "always do the right thing"; not "innovative spirit", but "seeing things from a different perspective". We can measure the effects of actions and even build rewards around them. The Golden Circle points out the way to long-term success, but achieving it often requires an "investment" or some short-term price. That's why your principles must be tightly centered on the "why" and aligned with your values.

03 Consistency in "what to do" 

Your words and deeds must match your beliefs. "Why" is just a belief, nothing more. The "how" is your act of implementing the idea. "What" is the result of behavior, everything you say and do: your products, services, marketing, PR, corporate culture, and the people you hire. Only when your words and deeds are in harmony with your ideas can people see your ideas clearly and without the slightest suspicion. At the level of "what to do", the question of "sincere" comes to the fore. Sincerity means doing what you truly believe and saying what you truly believe. Sincerity cannot be demonstrated without a clear “why.”

3. How to apply the golden circle rule in work and life?

01 Cultivate trust 

To earn trust, you need to communicate and demonstrate to the other person that you share the same values and beliefs. You have to say your "why" and then prove it with a "what". When the three dimensions are in equilibrium, you build trust, and your values ​​are recognized.

02 Build a culture 

A company is a culture, and a group of people comes together because of a common value and philosophy. What makes a company cohesive is not its products or services, what makes a company strong is not its size and strength, the answer is culture.

03 Talent recruitment

When looking for talent, your goal is not to find those who are capable but to find those who share your philosophy.

04 Stimulate innovation

Companies that define themselves by "what" rather than "why" have employees innovating around a product or service. "Make it better," employees were instructed. But great companies tell their employees a mission or a challenge, rather than simply asking them to make a better mousetrap.

05 Influencing decisions

We are more likely to trust and be influenced by those who share our values ​​and beliefs.

06 Win the market

The Law of Innovation Diffusion states that for an innovative product to spread in the market, it must first win over imperfect innovators and early adopters who recognize its value and tolerate it so that they will not only love you but also share it with others Talk about you proactively; then, through their influence to influence the early majority, the late majority representing the mass market. If you don't do this and directly influence the middle power, then it is almost impossible to win the mass market.

07 Improve leadership

Enthusiasm and energy inspire, but charisma inspires. Enthusiasm and energy are easy to see, easy to measure, and easy to imitate. Charisma is hard to define, nearly impossible to measure, and too elusive to imitate. All 'Start with Why' have charisma because they all know the “why” — a belief and mission that is enduring and greater than themselves.

08 Life choices

Our “why,” which is our life mission, purpose, or beliefs, never changes. If our Golden Circle is in equilibrium, our "what to do" is just the way and means to implement the idea.

09 Team structure and market

Bringing the three-dimensional dimension to the Golden Circle can give us insight into how great teams are built. This cone represents a company or a team, a system that is inherently hierarchical and orderly. Sitting at the top of the system, who represents the "why," is the leader; in a company, that's usually the CEO (or, at least, we hope). The next level, representing the "how," are senior executives who are inspired by the leader's vision and know what to do to put the idea into practice, who build the infrastructure with systems and processes. These people exist in marketing, operations, finance, human resources, and everything that has a "chief XX officer." Below this level, the "what to do" level, everything finally falls into place, which is where the majority of employees are.

The "why" type of people set their sights on things that most people can't see, like the future. "How-to" types focus on what the vast majority of people can see, and they are good at building structures and processes to get things done. There is no question of who is better than the other, it is just a matter of seeing the world and doing things differently.

At the bottom is the market, and most employees are responsible for contacting the market and conveying the company's beliefs through their words and deeds.

10. Bring Loyalty

For a message to have a real impact, be able to influence people's behavior, and sow the seeds of loyalty, "exposure" alone is not enough. You need to promote your mission and goals to people who share your philosophies and values.

11 Repeated Greatness

Starting from the "why", success is just a by-product of pursuing the why. Constantly asking "why" and sharing your ideas with others through what you do will inspire those around you to do great things for you and achieve greater success.

4. Challenges to the Golden Circle Rule

01 The biggest challenge is success 

Many people have achieved great things, but never feel successful. Some successful people will say with emotion that fame is always accompanied by loneliness. This is because success and completion are two different things, yet we often confuse them. Completion is when you accomplish something or achieve a goal, which is specific and quantifiable. But success is a feeling or a state. It's easy to make a plan of action to achieve a goal; it's hard to plan for that non-specific, sense of success.

When you pursue the "what" and get results, you get achievement; when you pursue a clear "why", you get success. The former is driven by concrete factors, while the latter is driven deep within the brain, the area of ​​the brain that is incapable of expressing feelings in words.

The quest for the "why" never ends, and success comes when we wake up every morning to pursue it. Our achievements, the things we do, serve as milestones that let us know we're on the right track. The relationship between the two is not either, we need both. A wise man once said: "Money can't buy happiness, but it can buy a yacht with happiness."

However, some people mistakenly regard "what to do" as the final destination in the pursuit of success. Because of this, no matter how high their achievements, they are never satisfied. We often make the false assumption that as soon as we achieve more, the feeling of success will follow. But this is rarely the case.

02 Encounter a fault 

Almost all businesses and teams start out the same: start with an idea. In the beginning, what drives ideas is passion, and this powerful emotion can lead us to do pretty irrational things. Inspired by the founder's vision, many companies' first employees display typical "early adopter" behavior. For passion to survive, it has to have structure. There is only "why", but no "how", only passion, but no structure, the probability of failure is great.

As the achievement grows larger, the process is reversed. "What to do" becomes the most important, all systems and processes are designed to pursue these specific results. The reason for this change is simple: faults appear, and the "why" is blurred.

In the early days, intuition was like a filter for decision-making. Later, rational cases and actual data often became the only basis for decision-making. Manipulation has not only become the company's main means of sales but has also become a magic weapon to retain employees. Bonuses, promotions, and other incentives, even creating fear among employees, have become the only means of retaining talent. But these are by no means incentives.

The line above represents how the team "does" over time. For companies, the metric is usually money, such as profit, revenue, EBITDA, share price, or market share growth. However, any metric can be used, depending on what the team does.

The second line represents the clarity of the "why". What the team should ensure is that as the "what" gets more and more accomplished, the "why" should follow closely. When the team is small, the "what" and the "why" go hand in hand. The idea of ​​the team is derived from the personality traits of the founders, so early employees can easily grasp it. People can understand these ideas because the source of their passion is so close to them.

But for companies that want to pass the "school bus test," reach billions in assets, or be large enough to impact a market or society, it's extremely important to ride out the hiccups.

The school bus test is a simple metaphor. If a team's founder or leader is hit by a school bus, can the team continue to prosper at the same rate without a helmsman? Too many teams are so reliant on the strength of the individual that the team disintegrates when those people are not there. The challenge is not whether to stick to the motivator but to find an effective way to pass on the vision of the founding days alive forever.

Inspiration from the Golden Circle Rule

Starting from the "why", the "why" is consistent with the "how" and "what to do", which has provided me with a new perspective to re-understand myself and others, and understand marketing and organization.

To understand yourself, you must first find your original intention and mission, and express your beliefs and ideas as clearly as possible in various ways. This is not an easy task. In addition to work and life, the writing of this article and this official account is my way of sorting out and expressing my personal beliefs. It allows me to understand myself better and others to understand me better, which means a lot to me.

So far, my life belief and personal mission are: life is a journey of experience, I hope to experience a richer state of life, always have the courage to love, create, grow myself, and help others as much as possible growing up.

Know yourself, but also put why into how you do and what you do. The reasons above made me rethink my own values and principles of action. Before, I was optimistic on the surface and pessimistic on the inside and was troubled by many restrictive beliefs. Since life is all about experience, I have a more open mind to differences, surprises, setbacks, and adversity. Problems represent opportunities for learning and growth, and other people's different opinions represent another perspective. What I need to do is to look at myself more objectively. limitations, find your potential, and nurture it. As for what to do, it is just a concrete practice of practicing beliefs and values and can be adapted.

To understand others, I have to learn to take the initiative to understand why he is and to be aware of whether his words and deeds are consistent. Whether it's making friends or finding a partner, try to find people who share the same beliefs and values as possible.

For marketing, the golden circle rule made me see the essential difference between manipulation and incentives, and understand why loyalty stems from the resonance between customers and brands. Brands and products are just the way customers express their ideas. Brands must always keep their words and deeds consistent.

In the past, I only felt ignorant about this point, but this time I have a very clear and profound understanding because of the author's analysis. At present, China is in the era of stock competition, and every business operator is eager to have their own loyal superusers with a full life cycle. Only great leaders who truly understand human nature and know how to motivate can do this. Learn this way of thinking, keep up with the pace of leaders, and if you have the opportunity, spread the ideas of these leaders to help more people.

For organizations, the golden circle rule allows me to see the growth of the organization and the decline of the organization, growing because of the "why", and declining because of the loss of the "why". Judging the success of an enterprise requires a long-term perspective, which is especially rare in today's China; to judge the future of an enterprise, its words and deeds can tell the clues, and we only need enough wisdom.

Learning After Reading: Start with Why by Simon Sinek

The whole book goes over and over again about the why, and then the how and how.
  • Why and how to correspond to the limbic brain, and what corresponds to the neocortex, that is, the former controls the perceptual part of the human being, and the latter controls the human rational thinking part. Many times we have made a choice in our heart, but because the limbic brain does not have the ability to express it, we cannot explain the choice in our heart, which leads to doubts. Strong people can use rational thinking and logical analysis to justify their choices, while weak people are likely to be persuaded by other people's logical arguments to make unintentional choices

  • The book believes that in business, Both manipulation and inspiration can touch the "limbic brain", but manipulation is short-term profit and cannot bring about the integrity of customers. Inspiration is to let customers identify with your product or service from the heart and build strong user loyalty. If the target customer is a short-term, one-time purchase, manipulation is possible. But if you want to develop in the long run, you still need to attract more innovators and early adopters through inspiration and use influencers to help reach the tipping point.

  • The book believes that in enterprise management, in order to build a long-term business, it is necessary to establish a sense of employee identity through culture. In the direction of development, the existing value, the vision and the mission, and the mission cannot deviate from the value. In employee management and organizational design, it is necessary to recruit people who share the same values ​​as the company.

  • The book believes that the biggest obstacle comes from success, which means that after success, you will lose yourself and may gradually deviate from the "Why" set at the beginning.

Doubtful places:

  • There are only a handful of companies that can start from why; most companies still start from the point of view of interests. With the current level of customer acceptance, not everyone can be your customer with empathy. It cannot be denied that it is a high-profile view, but when it comes to business reality, it may be distant communism.

  • On the whole, companies go public to raise more capital for better development. But going public also brings pressure from shareholders. You can choose employees, but you cannot choose shareholders who hold the same beliefs. When faced with shareholder pressure, decision-makers have to make some short-term behaviors. Everything is a trade-off. Maybe what we need to do now is how to strike a balance, rather than blindly emphasize the importance of belief.

  • I think the book only emphasizes the importance of ''Why' and ignores some of the examples. Internal and external objective factors are slightly biased. Sony and Dell are behind Apple, and it's not just a question of why. Can you say that Sony is a company without core values? Especially in the field of science and technology, the impact of technological development and changes in the external environment is too great. 

The problem of rigidity and slow speed in the management of large companies themselves is also an important reason for backwardness. Can you say that IBM is not dedicated to clients now? Can you say MS doesn't want to change the world right now? In short, why is important, but the importance of strategy & execution is also not low.

Muhiuddin Alam is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of He serves as a consistent contributor to various websites and publications, including Medium, Quora, Reddit, Linkedin, Substack, Vocal, Flipboard, and Amazon KDP. Alam personally read numerous books and, for the past 10 years, has been providing book recommendations and reviews. Find Me: About Me & Google Knowledge Panel.

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