Everyone’s Crush on Simon Sinek

Photo: Simon Sinek

Everyone seems to have a massive crush on Simon Sinek. I like some of his stuff, too! His “Start with Why” model is terrific.

In order to quote him for a client project, I recently reviewed a bunch of videos. This seemed a good summary for this month’s Cat Say What?



In this video, Simon Says:

“Middle management is the toughest job in any organization”  

  • “Most things break in the middle”
  • “We don’t train people how to lead; there’s a vacuum of real leadership training”
  • “Be the leader you wish you had” 


Cat Says:

  • Sometimes this is true. Sometimes the toughest job is the one without a voice.
  • We have more leadership training than we need. What we need is a willingness and commitment to activate, integrate, measure and sustain the associated behaviours.
  • I agree! Develop a sense of self-agency and commit to aligning your actions with your values. Grass roots momentum works. And what you say and do is within your control, always.


In this video, Simon Says:

What do you do when you can’t complete the mission (a.k.a. You want to quit??)”

  • “This is what we signed up for”
  • “You have no choice”
  • “I never thought of quitting ever again!”


Cat Says:

  • Sometimes quitting is the right thing to do (kind of like when Sinek quit law school to go into advertising).
  • We always have a choice. Cultivate reflective mindset practice and find others with whom you can have open, honest exploratory conversations. Align your actions with your values.
  • B.S.: Everyone thinks of quitting something sometimes.


In this video, Simon Says:

“Find your just cause (…and a cause so just that people are willing to sacrifice for it”)

  • Resilient – It must withstand technological, political and cultural change
  • Inclusive – invitation to those who believe what you
  • Service-orientation – primary benefit goes to those other than the contributor


Cat Says:

  • Yes. Finding a cause that aligns with your values and aspirations and skills and passions and goals is fantastic. Go for it!
  • The notion that to be successful means one (or many) must sacrifice other valuable areas of life (family, sleep, etc.) is what got us into this mess in the first place.
  • Not everyone has the luxury of working only in a space where they have identified their ‘just cause’. This smacks of a limited and privileged perspective.
  • It’s ok for your just cause to shift and morph through technological, political and cultural change.


In this video, Simon Says:

“Use introversion to your advantage” (Leverage what you’ve got…)

  • “It makes me a much better public speaker because I’m an introvert.”


Cat Says:

·  B.S. Full stop. Both extroverts and introverts can be great public speakers. Let’s get rid of the rigid labeling, shall we?


If you’ve got a suggestion for a Cat Say What topic, simply email me at catherine@purplevoodoo.ca.

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