The simple question that is a game changer ! 


Whether you run a business, lead a team or work in a team, asking one simple question can change the what you do, how you do it,  the value that you deliver every day and ultimately the pride you can have in what you do. 

The key to finding the right answers is totally reliant on asking the right questions, but what if I told you that the secret that makes this process easy is basically about asking one question, and that this has the power to unlock everything. 

OK here it is … Why?  

Simon Sinek hit global notoriety with his why in business TEDx talk, where among other things he explained the importance of knowing why a company exists and why it does what it does.  

If you want to get to the core of a business or in fact pretty much any

action within a team or business, I invite you to try the “Why Loop”. 

download pdf

If we take a business and look at any product or service no matter how non people related it may be, it is interesting that the prices will end up uncovering the human centred core reason that the product exists and from there the question may arise what our customers actually buying from us?  

In reality people buy outcomes they just don’t realise it, and in the same way businesses regardless of industry or size actually sell outcomes which are aligned to customerneeds . 

I remember asking a senior marketing executive of a heavy industry company what the why was in their business they do what they do why does a business exist ?    

The answer I got was Simply put to me that it was all about profit 

This got me wondering if the entrepreneur who started the business was purely about profit or whether there was actually a drive to create something that delivered a solution or service that ultimately added value? 

Now the company in question built and sold cranes and provided support services for them so it might seem like a big jump to say that the company is all about people, how does a train wheel relate directly to people?  

Let me take you on a journey and you’ll see how the while it works … It will also have helped uncover a hidden gem that can give workers a sense of pride in what they do not because of the task that they complete but rather a gaining of an understanding of how important that outcome their response before he is in the big picture. 

So if we take the train company as the example and the product in question being the train wheel let’s try using the Why Loop. 

  • Why do you make that rain wheel?
    • Because I’m employed to. 
  • Why do they employ you to do that?      
    • Because we need train wheels  
  • Why do you need train wheels?      
    • Because trains need them to run on tracks  
  • Why do trains need to run?
    • To move things around like people and freight  
  • Why do trains need to move paper round?
    • So people can get to work  
  • Why do people need to get to work?
    • So they can earn a living  
  • Why do people need to earn a living?
    • So they can afford to buy food  
  • Why do people need to buy food?
    • They need food to live if I have a family they need to be able to feed their family as well  

So what happens if the train wheels fail? What impact is that have down the whole line? In the same way that the metalworker who fabricates the wheels suddenly has a realisation of the importance of what they do so does accompany. The product for the company is a train wheel and then a train but ultimately there is a human centred proposition here. 

In the mind of the train wheel fabricator it now becomes pretty simple  

I fabricate train wheels at work and whilst that is the physical work that I do the picture is actually far bigger because my work supports a reliable system that helps millions of people to get to work everyday and enables remote communities across Australia to get food and essential supplies, it helps put food on the table for millions of people every day. 

Now the example above might seem a bit simplistic but it’s amazing how true it actually is.  if the “Why” in heavy rail company can ultimately be peoplecentred imagine what a business that on face value is all about people would have. 

By our lack of understanding about the ultimate outcome we deliver every day we are missing out on an opportunity to un cover the real value we deliver. 

I challenge you to take a look at either your business or the actions you take every day to dig down and find what it is all really about ask Why and then you’ll understand Why.