Why leaders need to understand their why or purpose

3 reasons why understanding ‘your why’ is so important

Like many successful people, you are likely to be highly self-motivated and driven. You work hard because you always have. You’ve achieved success in the past with a winning formula of talent and determination; so why would you now question your motivations more deeply?

Here are 3 reasons to delve deep and gain full clarity about your purpose in life

1. It will help you navigate challenges

All leaders find themselves in situations where they need to decide between multiple alternatives. Maybe you hit an obstacle or challenge, or the path ahead seems unclear. Navigating these situations successfully depends on your ability to choose between alternative actions based on your deeply held values, ideals and principles.

Clarity of purpose will help you be more decisive when faced with multiple, difficult choices, instead of feeling lost or stuck. By fully understanding ‘your why’, you know which way to turn, instead of taking steps in the wrong direction or running in circles. This phenomenon is also true of teams; with shared values and purpose the group will connect rather than drift.

2. You’ll be a more inspiring leader

In his best-selling book ‘Start with Why’, Simon Sinek said:

“Great leaders give everyone something to believe in, not something to do.”

Understanding and communicating your deeply held values will help you build deeper connections and a greater sense of meaning with your team. This is nothing like a bland, corporate mission statement; it’s more emotional and inspiring. Bringing your ‘why’ to the company is energizing rather than energy sucking.

Giving people something to believe in is a huge step from being a task-based leader to becoming an inspirational leader. By taking the time to understand the ‘why’ of each of your team members, you can also start to help them with their career and personal development. This deeper level of motivational understanding is also invaluable in resolving conflicts and difficult inter-personal situations.

3. You can slay your saboteurs

In his book Positive Intelligence, Shirzad Chamine describes saboteurs as our internal enemies:

“They are a set of automatic and habitual mind patterns, each with its own voice, beliefs, and assumptions that work against your best interest.”

For example, maybe your ‘Judge’ saboteur constantly finds faults with your decisions. Perhaps your ‘Stickler’ takes your perfectionism too far and you find it hard to take action. At other times, your ‘Pleaser’ may take center stage and you end up losing sight of your own needs.

We all have these ‘mind saboteurs’. But developing a strong sense of your ‘why’ helps you to rise above them. This makes it easier for you to navigate the path that aligns with your deeper underlying values and mission.

With individual and team coaching we will always come back to your BIG why. Coaching is a thought-provoking and creative process that gives you guidance to reach your goals and inspires you to maximize your personal and professional potential.

Talk to me to arrange a free coaching session!