Start with why

“Imagine a world where people wake up every day inspired to go to work, feel safe while they are there, and return home at the end of the day feeling fulfilled by the work they do, feeling that they have contributed to something greater than themselves.”
– Simon Sinek

Anybody who has followed this blog for a while or who has read any of my previous posts will know that purpose is a hugely important factor for me. It’s part of the reason I created this blog and why I wanted to share my story with the world.

Well, the quote above by the rather brilliant Simon Sinek describes perfectly how I live my life – my purpose – and makes me want to share that story wider to inspire others.

But, what most surprises me though, is how few people I meet actually have the same way of thinking and the same drive to do what they love – or if they are, they don’t consciously recognise it.
Start with Why

[Image – The Start with Why model, www.startwithwhy.com]

Understanding my why

There is a wealth of information across the web, in podcasts, in videos and in books – including the Start with Why book by Simon! – to tell you about the Start With Why model, so instead of going through all of that, I thought I’d tell you about my why. Why do I do my job? Why do I write this blog? Why do I have a family?

Well, I do what I do in my life to make a difference.

I look at it that if I can help one person – whether that’s one of my children, my wife, a member of my team, a member of the public, a stranger on a train – then I’ve made the difference that I wanted to make. And if that person is then inspired to help another person then that would be magical.

Living my why at work – and developing my team why 

My day job involves working for a local council and, as a result, my salary is paid by the taxes that other people have earnt and then paid into the government. And with this, I believe comes great responsibility – a little like Spiderman (see more about my superpower)!

have just justify every single penny that is spent on my wages and every single penny that I spend on services, equipment, etc.

And I need to make sure that my team is also brought into this.

To help me do this, I have used the brilliant Teamworks tool from SYPartners to work with my team to create our shared team purpose – i.e. the why we do what we do. We wrote quote a long team purpose statement, but to help us spread our team why easily, we also created a short version –

We do what we do to:

inform, listen to and learn from users to make services better meet their needs

This also sums up everything about my why.

Transforming services to make the best use of public funds whilst improving the user experience and meeting the differing needs of the public has been at the heart of what I do, how I work, and why I do what I do, ever since my first post over a decade ago.

So, my why is also my teams why. And do you know what? When the two are linked together like this work is something that is enjoyable. It is worth going in for. It is worth staying to do. And when I get home, I am pleased with the day, proud of what I have achieved and happy to spread that joy with my family.

So, I challenge you to look at, learn about and live your why. If you do that, you will join me in my personal purpose – to do life, better.

2 thoughts on “Start with why”

  1. Great pieces and I relate completely. I love your attitude towards your wages being paid by taxes. If more people shared this thinking, the world would be a better place.

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