Among one of the first things entrepreneurs or network marketers are asked is; what is you’re why? And, in many instances people are still determining what that means. What we do know however, is that the why is often what keeps people going. Especially on the days they don’t feel like it. In this blog, we want to take a page from Simon Sinek’s book ‘Find your Why’.
This is a practical guide to help leaders, managers, business owners, etc. lead themselves and their team through finding their (your why). Now, we can’t take credit for the structure, however, we do have our spin on the suggested activities recommend to facilitators.
Find Your Why With Stories
Ask yourself (and your group/team) stories of when they felt most proud of their work. Whether it be through;
- contribution as a whole
- specific individuals
- a goal attained
- great customer feedback
… and so on. Suppose this can be done in a group, great! Talk about it. If this is something you are doing on your own, be sure to write it down. Or, record it in a voice note (among our favorite thing to do!). Now, remember, these should not be accomplishments tied to anything monetary.
These are stories about things you have GIVEN, not things you have RECEIVED.
Get as specific as you can with the stories and moments. The more details the better. You want to relive it or have your team help you experience a similar feeling. Make sure you have a clear picture of the scenario; location, people involved, dialogue, feeling, intention, etc.
While telling the story, it should – without question – create an emotional response.
Find Your Why Through Contributions
Taking the existing stories from above, now you want to focus on the verbs of each one. The goal is to identify things that have happened, not things aspired to. These verbs, should be linked directly to the story(ies). There are better places to choose items than this because they sound good.
Be very real here. There are no right or wrong verbs to choose. The ones that matter most are the ones that were used to describe the story previously. A great promotion to use for this is;
‘In this story, we showed and we _________ed.’ The blank, should be filled in with a verb.
If you are doing this on your own, you want to come up with at least 3-5 verbs from your story. However, if this activity is done with others – do your best to draw 10 verbs from the stories shared. This will give you a solid verbs to choose from when it’s time.
A few examples of these can be;
.. and so on.
Find Your Why Through Others Abilities
In this section, when you look back at the stories and now the chosen verbs ask yourself this; through my actions, what did it allow others to do? What did it enable them to do?
In simple terms, how were people’s lives different after interacting with you?
Often, and you may even be guilty of this, but people don’t celebrate themselves enough. We are so quick to attribute it to being humble when in fact, it is so important to acknowledge when you have DONE something to better someone else’s life. Even if it’s just your inside-the-head voice, it is in these moments we are filled up.
Put yourself in a position for your cup to overflowing.
And so, through this section of the activity – although the what you did feels like the star, it is in fact the why you did it.
Drafting Your Why Statement
This is where the magic happens. Now that you took your time to find your why, it is time to put it into action. If this was done with a team or group of employees – continue to work together. In the event this was done by yourself – not a problem, the process is still the same.
It is time to turn the verbs/action phrases and impact statements from the above exercises, into a couple versions of a whystatement.
To ___________ so that _____________.
The first portion of this statement (to) should reflect a contribution. The second portion (so that) is the impact or effect it has on others.
And, just like that you have your why statement.
Understand that this may take a few attempts to see what feels best for you. But remember, the words should only be taken from the previous activities. You want your why statement to be true to who you are – and that trueness, was shared through your stories.
Let us know if this short activity was helpful for you. We do have a few more like this to help you dive even deeper and more importantly, what you can now DO with this information. So please, drop us a comment and let us know if you and your team/organization, would benefit from more of these goodies!