Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action - Summary and review

Updated: April 7th, 2024
Published: January 12th, 2024


What is Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action about

The three main takeaways

1. Sales manipulation is not needed when you start with WHY

“People do not buy what you do, they buy why you do it.”When you focus on features and WHAT you offer, you end up resorting to having to use manipulation techniques to close deals. Discounting, special offers, exploding offers, etc. are all part of the sales manipulation game.Instead, when focusing on the WHY in sales, prospects won’t bother about details like price or features. They will happily buy your offering at full price because your beliefs are aligned and trust is established.

2. Successful leaders inspire others by communicating the WHY

Great leaders start by identifying their purpose, vision, and cause. When leaders begin with the right motivation, people are inspired to follow. Starting with WHY also builds trust.

They follow the “Golden Circle” formula, starting with finding their “Why” followed by the “How”, and “What” - not the other way around.

The Golden Circle - Start with Why

The Golden Circle formula is similar to the Atomic Habits’ three layers of behavior change, where identity-based habits are formed by starting with identity (WHY), then processes (HOW), and finally outcomes (WHAT).

3. Winning over early adopters and the tipping point

One should focus on winning over innovators and early adopters first to grow a business. These people embrace change and will thus believe in your mission before the majority does.Sinek explains how the tipping point occurs when enough of these early adopters, innovators, and influencers unite to support a WHY.In his book The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell described the tipping point as the magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a threshold and spreads like wildfire. Gladwell also talks about the impact of “connectors” and “influencers” in creating viral growth.Also, Andrew Chen talks about the tipping point of networks in The Cold Start Problem, described as the point where the network has sufficient momentum to build and scale new networks at an exponential rate.

✍️ My top quote: This is, in my opinion, the top quote from the book Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action.

Quote 1

People do not buy what you do, they buy why you do it.