People don’t by what you do, they buy why you do it

By evoke
November 25, 2010

For those of you who are familiar with the Blueprint process, you know we are about answering the question “Why should I choose you?” in seven words or less.  The same seven words or less also answers two other important questions:

  • Who are you at the DNA level?
  • Who are you as a cause?

It is the latter question that drew us to Simon Sinek, who is, among other things, a business prof at Columbia University.  He has written a book called “Start With Why” that explains how great leaders – both individuals and organizations – inspire people into action.  He says most most people know what they do and how they do it, but few know why they do what they do. It is in knowing and evangelizing the “why?” that you inspire action.

In his presentation at the TED Conference, he explains the importance of “Why?” within the context of sales performance.  In other words, those companies that focus on the “Why?” – or as we would say, “why should I choose you?” – sell faster and easier, and have far greater loyalty, than those who sell using the “what” and “how” (eg., features and benefits).

“Why?”, “Why should I choose you?”, “Who are you at the DNA level?”, and “Who are you as a cause?” are all the same question.  Simon provides the underlying rationale for why having an answer to these questions is so important if you want to grow faster.

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