Simon Sinek’s Top 10 Rules For Success (@simonsinek)


– Some people see the thing that they want and some people see the thing that prevents them from getting
the thing that they want. It’s as if an entire generation is standing at the foot of a mountain, they know exactly what they
want, they can see the summit, what they can’t see is the mountain. People put Harley Davidson
logos on their body to say something about who
they are, corporate logo. Ain’t not Proctor and Gambles
tattooed on anybody’s arm. Passion is the feeling you have that you would probably do this for free, you know, and you can’t believe
somebody pays you to do it. – He’s an author, speaker, and consultant who writes on leadership and management. He joined the Rand Corporation in 2010 where he advises our military
innovation and planning. He’s known for popularizing the concepts of the golden circle,
and to start with why. He’s Simon Sinek, and here’s my take on his top 10 rules for success. Rule number six is my personal favorite, and make sure to stick
around all the way to the end for some special bonus
clips, and as always, if Simon says something that really, really resonates with you, please leave it in the comments below
and put quotes around it so other people can be inspired as well. (electronic whooshing) (upbeat instrumental music) Let me tell you a story. So a friend of mine and I, we went for a run in Central Park. The Road Runner’s Organization, on the weekends they host races. And it’s very common,
at the end of the race they’ll have a sponsor who
will give away something, apples or bagels, or something. And on this particular day when we got to the end of the run there
were some free bagels, and they had picnic tables set up, and on one side was a group of volunteers. On the table were boxes of bagels, and on the other side was
a long line of runners waiting to get their free bagel. So I said to my friend,
“Let’s get a bagel.” And he looked at me and said,
“Nah, that line’s too long.” And I said, “Free bagel.” And he said, “I don’t
want to wait in line.” And I was like, “Free bagel.” (audience laughing) And he said, “Nah, it’s too long!” And that’s when I realized that there’s two ways to see the world. Some people see the thing that they want, and some people see the
thing that prevents them from getting the thing that they want. I could only see the bagels. He could only see the line. (audience laughing) And so I walked up to the line, I leaned in between two people, put my hand in the box,
and pulled out two bagels. And no one got mad at
me, because the rule is you can go after whatever you want, you just cannot deny anyone else to go after whatever they want. Now I had to sacrifice choice, I didn’t get to choose which bagel I got, I got whatever I pulled out, but I didn’t have to wait in line. So the point is, you don’t
have to wait in line. You don’t have to do it the
way everybody else has done it. You can do it your way,
you can break the rules, you just can’t get in the way of somebody else getting what they want. That’s rule number one. Performing under
pressure, whether it’s me, or anybody else is, is the same. You know, I have the same
pressures as anyone else, there’s time, there’s performance, there’s financial, I mean, there are, you know, there’s deadlines. My pressures are not unique. The situations may be
different, or, you know, but everybody has the
same kinds of pressures. But what I found, or
what I find fascinating, is the interpretation for the stimuli, if, let me explain. So I was watching the Olympics, this last summer
Olympics, and I was amazed at how bad the questions were that the reporters would ask all the athletes. And almost always they
would ask the same question, whether they were about to compete, or after they competed:
“Were you nervous?” Right? And to a T, all the athletes went, “No.” Right? And what I realized, is it’s
not that they’re not nervous, it’s their interpretation of what’s happening in their bodies, I mean, what happens when you’re nervous? Right? Your heart rate starts
to go, (sighs) you’re, you know, you sort of get a little tense, you get a little sweaty, right? You have expectation of what’s coming, and we interpret that as “I’m nervous.” Now what’s the interpretation of excited? Your heart rate starts to go, you become, you’re anticipating what’s coming, right? You get a little sort of like, tense, it’s all the same thing,
it’s the same stimuli. Except these athletes, these
Olympic quality athletes have learned to interpret the stimuli that the rest of us would say
is “nervous” as “excited.” They all said the same thing, “No, I’m not nervous, I’m excited.” And so I’ve actually practiced
it just to tell myself when I start to get nervous,
that this is excitement. – Yeah.
– You know? And so where when you–
I used to speak in front of a large audience,
and somebody would say, “How do you feel?” And I used to say, “A little nervous.” Now when somebody says, “How do you feel?” I’m like, “Pretty excited, actually!” And it came from just
sort of telling myself, “No, no, no, this is excitement.” And it becomes a little
bit automatic later on. But it’s kind of a remarkable thing, to deal with pressure by
interpreting what your body is experiencing as excitement
rather than nerves. And it’s really kind of effective, it makes you want to rush
forward rather than pull back, and yet it’s the same experience. I talk to so many smart,
fantastic, ambitious, idealistic, hardworking kids, and
they’re right out of college, they’re in their entry-level jobs, and I’ll ask them, “How’s it goin’?” And they’ll say, “I
think I’m going to quit.” And I’m like, “Why?” And they say to me, “I’m
not making an impact.” I’m like, “You know you’ve
been here eight months, right?” (audience laughing) They treat the sense of fulfillment, or even love, like it’s a scavenger hunt, like it’s something you look for. My millennial friends, they’ve
gone through so many jobs, they’re either getting
fired, I mean, it was mutual. (audience laughing) Or they’re quitting because
they’re not making an impact, or they’re not finding the
thing they’re looking for, they’re not feeling fulfilled,
as if it’s a scavenger hunt. Love, a job you find joy from, is not something you discover! It’s not like, “I found love!” Here it is. “I found a job I love”,
that’s not how it works. Both of those things require hard work, you are in love because you work very hard every single day of your
life to stay in love. You find a job that
brings you ultimate joy because you work hard every single day to serve those around you,
and you maintain that joy, it’s not a discovery! But the problem is the
sense of impatience! It’s as if an entire generation is standing at the foot of a mountain, they know exactly what they
want, they can see the summit, what they can’t see is the mountain. This large, immovable object. That doesn’t mean you
have to do your time, that’s not what I’m talking about. Take a helicopter, climb, I don’t care, but there’s still a mountain. Life, career fulfillment,
relationships, are journeys. The problem is, this entire generation has an institutionalized
sense of impatience, and do they have the
patience to go on the journey to maintain love, to feel fulfilled, or do they just quit, and on to the next, dump, and on to the next? Ghost, and on to the next. In the eighteenth century
there was something that spread across Europe and eventually made it’s way to America,
called Puerperal fever, also known as the ‘black
death of childbed’. Basically what was happening
is women were giving birth and they would die within
48 hours after giving birth. This black death of childbirth
was the ravage of Europe and it got worse, and worse, and worse over the course of over a century. In some hospitals it was high
as 70% of women who gave birth who would die as a result of giving birth. But this was the Renaissance,
this was the time of empirical data and science,
and we had thrown away things like tradition and mysticism. These were men of science,
these were doctors. And these doctors and men of science wanted to study and
try and find the reason for this black death of childbed, and so they got to work studying. They would study the corpses
of the women who had died, and in the morning they
would conduct autopsies, and then in the afternoon they would go and deliver babies and
finish their rounds. And it wasn’t until
somewhere in the mid 1800’s that Doctor Oliver Wendell Holmes, father of Supreme Court
Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, realized, that all of these doctors who were conducting
autopsies in the morning weren’t washing their hands before they delivered babies in the afternoon. And he pointed it out, and said,
“Guys, you’re the problem.” And they ignored him, and
called him crazy, for 30 years. Until finally somebody realized that if they simply washed
their hands, it would go away. And that’s exactly what happened. When they started
sterilizing their instruments and washing their hands, the black death of childbed disappeared. My point is, the lesson here is, sometimes, you’re the problem. (audience laughing) We’ve seen this happen all too recently with our new men of science
and empirical studiers, and these men of finance, who are smarter than the rest of us until the thing collapsed. And they blamed everything
else except themselves. And my point is take
accountability for your actions. You can take all the credit in the world for the things that you do right, as long as you also take responsibility for the things you do wrong,
it must be a balanced equation. You don’t get it one
way and not the other, you get to take credit when
you also take accountability. I spoke at an education
summit for Microsoft, I also spoke at an
education summit for Apple. At the education summit for Microsoft, I would say that 70% of the executives spent about 70% of their presentations talking about how to beat Apple. (audience laughing) At the Apple education
summit 100% of the executives spent 100% of their presentations talking about how to help teachers teach, and how to help students learn. One is playing this way,
and one is playing that way. One is playing finite, and
the other is playing infinite. Guess which one gets frustrated? (audience laughing) So at the end of my talk at
Microsoft they gave me a gift, they gave me the new
Zune, when it was a thing. (audience laughing) And let me tell ya, this
thing was spectacular. It was the most elegant piece
of technology I’ve ever used. The user interface was incredible, the design was spectacular,
I absolutely loved it. It was easy to use, and it was bright, and gorgeous, and fantastic,
it didn’t work on iTunes, which is a different problem,
so I couldn’t use it, but it was amazing.
(audience laughing) And elegant, my God, it was elegant. So I’m sitting in the back of the taxi with a very senior Apple executive, sort of employee number 12 kind of guy, and you know, I like to stir pots, so I turn to him, I said, “You know, “Microsoft gave me their new Zune, “and it is so much better
than your iPod touch.” (audience laughing) And he turned to me and he
said, “I have no doubt.” Conversation over. (audience laughing) Because the infinite player understands, sometimes you’re ahead, and
sometimes you’re behind. Sometimes your product is
better, and sometimes it’s worse. The goal isn’t to be the best every day, the goal isn’t to outdo
your competition every day, that’s a finite construction. If I had said to Microsoft,
“I’ve got the new iPod Touch “and it’s so much better than your Zune”, they would have said, “Can
we see it, what does it do?” React, react, react, react. Finite players play to beat
the people around them. Infinite players play to
be better than themselves. To wake up every single day and say, how can we make our
company a better version of itself today than it was yesterday? How can we create a product this week that’s better than the
product we created last week? We also have to play the infinite game. It’s not about being ranked number one, it’s not about having
more followers on Twitter than your friends, it’s
not about outdoing anyone. It’s about how to outdo yourself. It’s not about selling more books, or getting more TED
views than somebody else, it’s about how to make sure that the work that you’re producing is better than the work you produced before. You are your competition. And that is what ensures you
stay in the game the longest, and that is what ensures you find joy. Because the joy comes not from comparison, but from advancement. – When are you at your best? – I’m at my best when I’m around people who believe what I believe. I know it seems silly, but I try very, very hard to sort of stack the deck. You know, to put myself
in a position of strength. So for example, you know,
somebody asked me just yesterday, have you ever had sort of a
bad, you know, engagement? And I was thinking to myself,
and I’m like, not really. But it’s not because I’m some sort of, sort of genius or anything,
anything like that, it’s because I stack the deck. It’s because I want to be there, I want to be around
people who want me there. In other words, if I’m
somebody’s tenth choice, and like, you know, I’ll
probably turn it down. Whereas if I’m their first
choice, they really want me there and so I’m more likely to
have a good engagement, they’re supportive of me,
and I’m supportive of them. And so yeah, I’m at my
best when I stack the deck, when I choose to be in an environment where my strengths are there. Nelson Mandela is a particularly special case study in the leadership world, because he is universally
regarded as a great leader. You can take other personalities and depending on the nation you go to, we have different opinions
about other personalities, but Nelson Mandela, across the world, is universally regarded as a great leader. He was actually the son of a tribal chief, and he was asked one day, “How did you learn to be a great leader?” And he responded that he
would go with his father to tribal meetings, and
he remembers two things when his father would
meet with other elders. One, they would always sit in a circle. And two, his father was
always the last to speak. You will be told your whole life that you need to learn to listen, I would say that you need to
learn to be the last to speak. I see it in boardrooms
every day of the week. Even people who consider
themselves good leaders, who may actually be decent leaders, will walk into a room and
say, “Here’s the problem, “here’s what I think, but I’m
interested in your opinion, “let’s go around the room.” It’s too late. The skill to hold your
opinions to yourself until everyone has spoken does two things. One, it gives everybody else the feeling that they have been heard,
it gives everyone else the ability to feel that
they have contributed. And two, you get the benefit of hearing what everybody else has to think before you render your opinion. The skill is really to keep
your opinions to yourself. If you agree with somebody, don’t nod yes. If you disagree with
somebody, don’t nod no. Simply sit there, take it all in, and the only thing you’re allowed to do is ask questions, so that you
can understand what they mean, and why they have the
opinion that they have, you must understand from
where they are speaking. Why they have the opinion they have, not just what they are saying. And at the end, you will get your turn. It sounds easy, it’s not. Practice being the last to speak, that’s what Nelson Mandela did. Every decision we make in our lives as individuals or as organizations, is a piece of communication, it’s our way of saying
something about who we are, and what we believe. This is why authenticity matters. This is why you have to say and do the things you actually believe. Because the things you say and do are symbols of who you are. And we look for those symbols so we can find people who believe what we believe, our very survival depends on it. So if you’re putting out false symbols, you will attract people to those symbols, but you won’t be able
to form trust with them. This is what Tiger Woods
did to us, he lied! He lied. He told us what he
thought we wanted to hear, and it was great, and we were drawn to it, and all of us who kind of like that idea of the, sort of the good
guy, were drawn to it. Until we found out it was a lie. He could have been the bad boy of golf, he could have had all
the same endorsements, and had a fantastic career,
and still been hailed as one of the great athletes of our day. But he didn’t, he chose to lie. Good luck forming trust again, Tiger. We don’t believe you. We don’t trust you. The goal of putting something out there, if you say what you believe,
and you do what you believe, you will attract people who
believe what you believe. If you go to one of your friends, and you say to one of your friends, “How would you like me to dress “so that you’ll like me better?” How would you want me to address you, how do you want me to speak,
so that you’ll like me more? Right? Your friends are going to
look at you and be like, what the, what are you talking about? You’re like, “Come on, come on, come on, “what should I wear, so that
you’ll find me more appealing, “and how would you like me to speak to you “so that you’ll like me more?” And your friends are going to tell you, “Just be yourself, that’s why I like you, “I don’t care, just be yourself.” Now think about what we do in industry. What do we do? We do market research, and we go up and we ask the customers,
“What kind of things, “what style should we speak to you? “How should we decorate ourselves, “what kind of things are you drawn to, “so that we can do those things “so that you’ll like us more?” It’s just as ridiculous. It’s just as ridiculous. Organizations should say and do the things they actually believe, and they will attract people
who believe what they believe. Or, they can choose to lie,
and at the slightest hint that they might be
lying, cynicism sets in. And people start saying, I’m not sure I can trust these guys because there’s not a lot of consistency in all the things they say and do, which means they can’t have
a very strong belief set, or they’re lying to me. And we call them inauthentic. The entire process of asking
other people who we should be is inauthentic, that’s hilarious to me! All these positioning studies
we do are inherently– We’re going to do a study
to find out from people so we can be more
authentic, that’s hilarious. (audience laughing) Say and do what you actually believe and the symbols you put out there, the things you say and the things you do, those red hats are ways
that people can find you. What you have the ability to do as designers, is create those symbols, and allow people to use those things to say something about who they are. Work for companies, work for clients, work for people who you
believe what they believe. Show up and feel a part of
something bigger than yourself. And your part is to put what
they believe into pictures, and words, and symbols, and graphics, so that other people can use those things to say something about who they are. People put Harley Davidson
logos on their body to say something about who
they are, corporate logo. Ain’t no Procter and Gambles
tattooed on anybody’s arm. (audience laughing) Because Harley means something,
they stand for something. People put that tattoo on there not to tell you that
they own a motorcycle, they put that tattoo there to tell you something about themselves. Do you ever see anybody with a Mac laptop put a sticker over that
beautiful shining apple? Ain’t never going to happen! Then how will you know who I am? Did you ever see anybody
with a PC break out the Windex to clean out their computer? Mac people? (breathing heavily) (audience laughing) Have you ever seen a dirty Mac? Doesn’t exist. Does not exist. Why? Because it’s who I am. These are symbols we use. The companies that are crystal
clear on what they believe, and they’re disciplined in how they do it, and they’re consistent in what they do, and everything they say,
and everything they do serves as a symbol of the
set of values and beliefs, we use those symbols to say
something about who we are. We surround ourselves with the people, and the products, and the brands, that say something about who we are. And when we can find
the people who believe what we believe, we’re
weirdly drawn to them, because our very survival depends on it. We need it. And so the more you can give of yourself, the more you can give of what you believe, the more you can
discipline, with discipline, say and do the things
you actually believe, strange things start to happen. – What are your thoughts,
and what’s your approach on finding, and building upon passions? – Passion is not an actionable word. It’s correct, you know,
that those who do the things that they’re passionate about do better, but it’s not helpful advice. And so the question is,
where does passion come from? Passion is a result, passion is an energy, passion is the feeling you have when you’re engaged in
something that you love. Passion is the feeling you have that you would probably do
this for free, you know? And you can’t believe
somebody pays you to do it. You know? And I think we mistake that
passion is something we do in our private lives,
but it shouldn’t be done, you know, in our careers, for example. And I’m a firm believer
that you are who you are, and anybody who says,
I’m different at home than I am at work, and one of
those two places you’re lying. And the goal is to make everything you do, at home and at work, something that you have excitement to do. So how do you find the things
that you’re excited to do? Well it’s actually easier than you think. What are the things that you love to do? What are the things that
you would do for free? You know? How can you recreate that
feeling, and paid for it? So what are the things that
I do on the weekend, right? I love, I’m very involved
in the art world. I love to go to museums and galleries, but I love to go see
dance and performances, because I want to see how others
are interpreting the world. So that inspires me. New ideas, new thoughts, new
ways of looking at the world are the things that
interest me, privately, and I seek it out and pay money for it. Right? So does that mean that I have
to have a career in the arts? No. It means I have to have a career where new ideas are explored, where people are experimenting
and trying things out, and I have to explore new
ideas and try things out, and I’m just as excited
to go to work every day as I am to go do something
on a Saturday night. And so the idea of finding your passion is ironically simple because
you should be doing stuff that you enjoy sometimes, what
is the stuff that you enjoy, and then what is the stuff that you love? Who are the people that you love, and what do they all have in common? And how do you explain when
things don’t go as we assume? Or better, how do you explain when others are able to achieve things that seem to defy all of the assumptions? For example, why is Apple so innovative? Year, after year, after year, after year, they’re more innovative
than all their competition. And yet they’re just a computer company, they’re just like everyone else. They have the same access
to the same talent, the same agencies, the same
consultants, the same media. Then why is it that they seem
to have something different? Why is it that Martin Luther King led the civil rights movement? He wasn’t the only man who suffered in a pre-civil rights America, and he certainly wasn’t the
only great orator of the day, why him? And why is it that the Wright brothers were able to figure out
control powered man flight when there were certainly other teams who were better qualified, better funded, and they didn’t achieve
powered man flight, and the Wright brothers beat them to it? There’s something else at play here. About three and a half years
ago I made a discovery. And this discovery
profoundly changed my view on how I though the world worked, and it even profoundly changed the way in which I operate in it. As it turns out, there’s a pattern. As it turns out, all the
great and inspiring leaders and organizations in the world, whether it’s Apple, or Martin Luther King, or the Wright Brothers, they all think, act, and communicate the exact same way, and it’s the complete
opposite to everyone else. All I did was codify it. And it’s probably the
world’s simplest idea. I call it the golden circle. Why, how, what. This little idea explains
why some organizations, and some leaders, are able to
inspire where others aren’t. Let me define the terms really quickly. Every single person,
every single organization on the planet knows what they do, 100%. Some know how they do
it, whether you call it your differentiating value proposition, or proprietary process, or your USP, but very, very few people or organizations know why they do what they do. And by why I don’t mean to make a profit. That’s a result, it’s always a result. By why, I mean what’s your purpose, what’s your cause, what’s your belief. Why does your organization exist? Why do you get out of bed in the morning? And why should anyone care? Well as a result, the way that we think, the way we act, the way we communicate, is from the outside it, it’s obvious. We go from the clearest
thing to the fuzziest thing. But the inspired leaders and
the inspired organizations, regardless of their size,
regardless of their industry, all think, act, and communicate
from the inside out. Let me give you an example. I use Apple because
they’re easy to understand and everybody gets it. If Apple were like everyone else, a marketing message from
them might sound like this: We make great computers,
they’re beautifully designed, simple to use, and user friendly. Want to buy one? Meh. And that’s how most of communicate, that’s how most marketing is done, that’s how most sales is done, and that’s how most of us
communicate interpersonally. We say what we do, we
say how we’re different, or how we’re better, and we
expect some sort of behavior, or purchase, or vote, something like that. Here’s our new law firm,
we have the best lawyers with the biggest clients,
we have, you know, we always perform for our
clients, do business with us. Here’s our new car, it
gets great gas mileage, it has, you know, leather
seats, buy our car. But it’s uninspiring. Here’s how Apple actually communicates: Everything we do, we believe
in challenging the status quo, we believe in thinking differently. The way we challenge the status quo is buy making our products
beautifully designed, simple to use, and user friendly. We just happen to make great computers. Want to buy one? Totally different, right? You’re ready to buy a computer from me. All I did was reverse the
order of the information. What it proves to us is that
people don’t buy what you do, people buy why you do it. People don’t buy what you
do, they buy why you do it. This explains why every
single person in this room is perfectly comfortable
buying a computer from Apple. But we’re also perfectly comfortable buying an MP3 player from Apple, or a phone from Apple,
or a DVR from Apple. But as I said before, Apple’s
just a computer company, there’s nothing that
distinguishes them structurally from any of their competitors. Their competitors are
all equally qualified to make all of these products. In fact, they tried a few years ago, Gateway came out with flat screen TV’s. They’re imminently qualified
to make flat screen TV’s, they’ve been making flat
screen monitors for years. Nobody bought one. And Dell, Dell came out
with MP3 players and PDA’s, and they make great quality products, and they can make perfectly
well-designed products, and nobody bought one. In fact talking about it
now, we can’t even imagine buying an MP3 player from Dell, why would you buy an MP3
player from a computer company? But we do it every day. People don’t what you do,
they buy why you do it. The goal is not to do
business with everybody who needs what you have,
the goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe. Here’s the best part, none of what I’m telling
you is my opinion. It’s all grounded in
the tenants of biology. Not psychology, biology. If you look at a cross
section of the human brain looking from the top down, what you see is that the human brain is actually broken into
three major components that correlate perfectly
with the golden circle. Our newest brain, our homo sapien brain, our neocortex, corresponds
with the what level. The neocortex is responsible
for all of our rational, and analytical thought, and language. The middle two sections
make up our limbic brains, and our limbic brains are responsible for all of our feelings,
like trust, and loyalty. It’s also responsible
for all human behavior, all decision making, and it
has no capacity for language. In other words, when we
communicate from the outside in, yes, people can understand vast amounts of complicated information like features, and benefits, and facts, and figures, it just doesn’t drive behavior. When we communicate from the inside out, we’re talking directly
to the part of the brain that controls behavior,
and then we allow people to rationalize it with the
tangible things we say and do. This is where gut decisions come from. You know, sometimes you can give somebody all the facts and the figures, and they say, I know what all
the facts and details say, but it just doesn’t feel right. Why would we use that verb,
it doesn’t feel right? Because the part of the brain
that controls decision making doesn’t control language, and
the best we can muster up is, I don’t know, it just doesn’t feel right. Or sometimes you say you’re
leading with your heart, or you’re leading with your soul. Well I hate to break it to you, those aren’t other body parts
controlling your behavior, it’s all happening here
in your limbic brain, the part of the brain that controls decision making and not language. But if you don’t know
why you do what you do, and people respond to
why you do what you do, then how will anybody, how
will you ever get people to get vote for you, or
buy something from you, or more importantly, be loyal, and want to be a part of
what it is that you do? Again, the goal is not just to sell people who need what you have,
the goal is to sell to people who believe what you believe. The goal is not just to
hire people who need a job, it’s to hire people who
believe what you believe. I always say that you know, there’s, if you hire people just
because they can do a job they’ll work for your money,
but if you hire people who believe what you
believe, they’ll work for you with blood, and sweat, and tears. And nowhere else is there
a better example of this than with the Wright brothers. Most people don’t know about
Samuel Pierpont Langley. And back in the early 20th Century, the pursuit of powered man flight was like the dot com of the
day, everybody was trying it. And Samuel Pierpont
Langley had what we assume to be the recipe for success, I mean, even now when you ask
people, why did your product, or why did your company fail,
and people always give you the same permutation of
the same three things. Unde capitalized, the wrong
people, bad market conditions, it’s always the same three things. So let’s explore that. Samuel Pierpont Langley
was given $50,000 dollars by the War Department to figure
out this “flying machine.” Money was no problem. He held a seat at Harvard and
worked at the Smithsonian, and was extremely well connected. He knew all the big minds of the day. He hired the best minds money could find, and the market conditions were fantastic. The New York Times followed
him around everywhere, and everyone was rooting for Langley. Then how come we’ve never heard
of Samuel Pierpont Langley? A few hundred miles away in Dayton, Ohio, Orville and Wilber Wright, they had none of what we consider
the recipe for success. They had no money, they
paid for their dream with the proceeds from their bicycle shop. Not a single person on
the Wright brother’s team had a college education,
not even Orville or Wilbur. And the New York Times
followed them around nowhere. The difference was, Orville
and Wilbur were driven by a cause, by a purpose, by a belief. They believed that if
they could figure out this flying machine, it’ll
changed the course of the world. Samuel Pierpont Langley was different. He wanted to rich, and
he wanted to be famous. He was in pursuit of the result. He was in pursuit of the riches. And low and behold look what happened. The people who believed in
the Wright brothers dream worked with them with
blood, and sweat, and tears. The others just worked for the paycheck. And they tell stories of how every time the Wright Brothers went
out they would have to take five sets of parts because
that’s how many times they would crash before
they came in for supper. And eventually, on December 17th, 1903 the Wright brothers took flight. And no one was there
to even experience it. We found out about it a few days later. And further proof that
Langley was motivated by the wrong thing, the day the
Wright brothers took flight, he quit. He could have said, that’s
an amazing discovery, guys, and I will improve upon your technology. But he didn’t. He wasn’t first, he didn’t get rich, he didn’t get famous, so he quit. People don’t buy what you
do, they buy why you do it. And if you talk about what you believe you will attract those who
believe what you believe. Well why is it important to attract those who believe what you believe? Something called the law
of diffusion of innovation. And if you don’t know the law, you definitely know the terminology. The first two and a half percent of our population are our innovators. The next 13 and a half percent of our population are our early adopters, the next 34 percent are
your early majority, your late majority, and your laggards. The only reason these
people by touch tone phones is because you can’t buy
rotatory phones anymore. (audience laughing) We all sit at various places
at various times on the scale, but what the law of diffusion
of innovation tell us is that if you want mass market success, or mass market acceptance of an idea, you cannot have it until you
achieve this tipping point between 15 and 18 percent
market penetration. And then the system tips. And I love asking businesses, what’s your conversion on new business? And they love tell you, “Oh, it’s about 10 percent”, proudly. Well you can trip over 10
percent of the customers. We all have about 10
percent who just “get it”, that’s how we describe them, right? That’s like that gut feeling,
oh, they just “get it.” The problem is, how do you find the ones that just get it before you’re
doing business with them, versus the ones who don’t get it. So it’s this here, this little
gap, that you have to close, as Jefferey Moore calls
it, crossing the chasm. Because you see, the early
majority will not try something until someone else has tried it first. And these guys, the innovators,
and the early adopters, they’re comfortable making
those gut decisions. They’re more comfortable making
those intuitive decisions that are driven by what they
believe about the world, and not just what product is available. These are the people who stood in line for six hours to buy an iPhone
when they first came out, when you could have just
walked into the store the next week and bought
one off the shelf. These are the people who
spent $40,000 dollars on flat screen TV’s when
they first came out, even though the technology
was substandard. And by the way, they didn’t do it because the technology was so great,
they did it for themselves. It’s because they wanted to be first. People don’t buy what you
do, they buy why you do it, and what you do simply
proves what you believe. In fact, people will do the things that prove what they believe. The reason that person bought the iPhone in the first six hours, and
stood in line for six hours, was because of what they
believed about the world, and how they wanted everybody to see them. They were first. People don’t buy what you
do, they buy why you do it. So let me give you a famous example, a famous failure, and a famous success of the law of diffusion of innovation. First the famous failure. It’s a commercial example. As we said before a second ago, the recipe for success is
money, and the right people, and the right marketing conditions, right? You should have success then. Look at TiVo. From the time TiVo came out
about eight or nine years ago, to this current day, they are the single highest quality product on the market. Hands down, there is no dispute. They were extremely well funded, market conditions were fantastic, I mean we used TiVo as a verb. I TiVo’d stuff on my piece of junk Time Warner DVR all the time! (audience laughing) But TiVo is a commercial failure. They’ve never made money. And when they went IPO, their stock was at about $30 or $40 dollars,
and then plummeted, and it’s never traded above $10. In fact, I don’t think
it’s even traded above six, except for a couple of little spikes. Because you see, when TiVo
launched their product, they told us all what they had. They said, “We have a
product that pauses live TV, “skips commercials, rewinds live TV, “and memorizes your viewing
habits without you even asking.” And the cynical majority
said, “We don’t believe you, “we don’t need it, we don’t
like it, you’re scaring us.” What if they had said, “If
you’re the kind of person “who likes to have total control “over every aspect of your life, “boy, do we have a product for you.” That pauses live TV, skips commercials, memorizes your viewing
habits, et cetera, et cetera. People don’t buy what you
do, they buy why you do it, and what you do simple serves as the proof of what you believe. Now let me give you a successful example of the law of diffusion of innovation. In the summer of 1963,
250,000 people showed up on the Mall in Washington
to hear Dr. King speak. They sent out no invitations, and there was no website
to check the date. How do you do that? Well, Dr. King wasn’t
the only man in America who was a great orator, he
wasn’t the only man in America who suffered in a
pre-civil rights America, in fact, some of his ideas were bad! But he had a gift. He didn’t go around telling people what needed to change in America, he went around and told
people what he believed. I believe, I believe, I
believe, he told people. And people who believed what
he believed took his cause and they made it their
own, and they told people. And some of those people
created structures to get the word out to even more people, and lo and behold,
250,000 people showed up on the right day, on the
right time, to hear him speak. How many of them showed up for him? Zero. They showed up for themselves. It’s what they believed about America that got them to travel
on a bus for eight hours to stand in the sun in Washington
in the middle of August. It’s what they believed,
and it wasn’t about black versus white, 25 percent
of the audience was white! Dr. King believed that
there were two types of laws in this world, those that are made by a higher authority, and
those that are made by man. And not until all the
laws that are made by man are consistent with the laws that are made by the higher authority will
we live in a just world. It just so happens that
the civil rights movement was the perfect thing to help
him bring his cause to life. We followed him not for
him, but for ourselves. And by the way, he gave
the I Have A Dream speech, not the I Have A Plan Speech. (audience laughing) I listen to politicians now with their comprehensive 12 point plans,
they’re not inspiring anybody. Because there are leaders
and there are those who lead. Leaders hold a position
of power, or authority, but those who lead, inspire us. Whether they’re individuals
or organizations, we follow those who lead,
not because we have to, but because we want to. We follow those who lead not
for them, but for ourselves. And it’s those who start with why that have the ability to
inspire those around them, or find others who inspire them. Thank you very much. (applause) – Thank you guys so much for watching, I made this video because Lex
van den Herik asked me to. So if there’s a famous entrepreneur that you would like me to profile next, please leave it down in the comments below and I’ll see what I can do. I’d also love to know which clip resonated the most with you today,
what did Simon say that had the biggest impact,
what change are you going to make to your life or business
after watching this video? Please leave it down
in the comments below, and I’m going to join in the discussion. Thank you so much for
watching, I believe in you, I hope you continue to
believe in yourself, and whatever your one word is. Much love, I’ll see ya soon. (electronic whooshing) – Decision making is a process, right? The question is, what
filters are you using to make decisions? Are you making decisions based
on the financial rewards, are you making decisions based
on how easy the work will be? I mean, I remember in college, you know, they would give you this
book, where all the students would rate the classes, and
they would rate things like how easy the class was, and how, you know, how much do they like professor. And you know, the first
year I picked all my classes based on workload, and I pick
everything a low workload. You know? And, pretty bored, didn’t
work very hard, which is fine, but nothing was dynamic and
nothing really excited me. And I, thank goodness, learned that, and so the second year
I picked all my classes by professor rating,
regardless of the workload. So every class I had, I had these dynamic, amazing, incredible human beings
passing on their knowledge, and you were excited
to work hard for them. You know? And so again, the question is, what are the filters we’re using? And so if you’re only
chasing the mighty dollar, then you will have jobs that’ll pay you a little more than the last,
but are you enjoying yourself? And I talked to a guy recently, who was in, he’s in bad shape, like, he really hates his life,
and he’s really depressed, and he doesn’t know what to do. And so we were going
through all his old jobs, you know, and I said, give
me a job that you’ve loved. And he hadn’t! Every single job he’s
chosen out of college he picked because of the
money, and if something offered him more somewhere else, he took it. You know? Regardless. And the amazing thing is, he plateaued, because if you’re only chasing the result, if you’re only chasing the
thing that makes it easy, right? Then eventually you will get bored, or they’ll get bored of you, right? And you plateau. In other words, chasing
the almighty dollar, if that’s your only thing,
it eventually flattens out. Whereas if you’re chasing
the thing that excites you, the human beings to be around,
the work that excites you, the stuff that you know, you
can get passionate about, you know? The irony is, is that you’ll
actually make way, way more! Right? Because you’re excited, and
they appreciate your excitement, and they reward your excitement, and you’re better at your work because you want to work
harder, and all of that stuff, you don’t have to strain to work harder. So decision making is simply
a matter of filters, you know? And so I’ve made decisions in my life that I would rather be happy than right, I’d rather do good than get rich, and so the decisions I
make put me in positions where when I leave any engagement, when I leave any meeting, I
feel that I’ve contributed. Right? Rare are the times anymore
where you walk away going, just think of the money,
just think of the money, think of the money, you know? ‘Cause that doesn’t feel nice. And the experience I have, I
don’t enjoy traveling to them, and I don’t enjoy traveling home. Where if I have an amazing experience, I am looking forward to getting there and I’m excited when I leave! – [Interviewer] Yeah. – You know, so it’s just decision making, decision making is just a
matter of what filters you use, and if you’re good about keeping
those filters up and clear, then make your decision. I don’t judge anybody by how, if they choose to use different filters, these are just the filters
I choose to live my life, you know? Not right or wrong, just
those are my decisions. You know, that’s my filter. How can you help the human race? How can you help the human race, the human species, progress? I’m not joking, either, this is something we
all have to be aware of. At the end of the day, the
human animal is a social animal. And our very survival
depends on our ability to form communities, to form cultures. What’s a community, what’s a culture? It’s a group of people with a common set of values and beliefs, right? What’s a country? It’s a group of people with a common set of values and beliefs. What’s a company? It should be a group of people with a common set of values and beliefs. When we’re surrounded by people
who believe what we believe, something remarkable happens. Trust emerges. And make no mistake of
it, trust is a feeling, and distinctly human feeling. You know, we all have friends
who are total screw ups, and yet we still trust them, right? (audience laughing) Trust is not a checklist, simply doing everything
you say you’re going to do does not mean people will
inherently trust you, it just means you’re reliable. We need trust. Right? We need trust. When we’re surrounded by people who believe what we believe,
and trust starts emerging, when we trust them, and they trust us, we’re more willing to take risks, we’re more willing to experiment, which requires failure,
we’re more willing to explore and go somewhere that no
one has ever gone before with the confidence that if we fail, if we trip over, if we turn our backs, that those within our community, those who we trust, and who trust us, will look after us while we’re gone, will pick us up when we fall over, will help us when we’re hurt. Our very survival depends on it. We’re not good at everything,
we’re not good by ourselves. You know, if I send you out to go fight a sabertooth tiger by yourself, odds are tiger one, you zero. (audience laughing) It’s not going to go very well. But if you go out as a group,
we’re pretty damn amazing. And the reason is, is because
we all have our own strengths, and we all have our certain weaknesses. And the goal is not to
fix your weaknesses, the goal is to amplify your strengths, and surround yourself with the people who can do what you can’t do. But it’s not just based on skills, and application, and experience, it’s based on what you believe, it’s based on what you believe. You see, simply being good at something, and having somebody else be
good at what you’re no good at does not mean you will trust each other. Trust, the sense of trust,
comes from the sense of common values and common beliefs. And I’ll prove it. How many of you are from New York? Okay, a bunch of you. Are you friends with
everybody in New York? (audience laughing) Why not? Why not? But when you go to Los Angeles, and you meet somebody from New York, you’re like “Hey, I’m from New York!” And you’re best friends. (audience laughing)
Right? And when you go to France, there you are on the Paris metro
minding your own business, and you hear an American
accent behind you, and you turn around, and you
say, “Hey, where you from?” They say, “Los Angeles.” You’re like, “Hey, I’m from New York!” And you’re best friends. (audience laughing) Because you’re surrounded by people who don’t believe what you believe, when you’re in a strange environment where you don’t feel comfortable, you look for anyone who may share some of the same values
and beliefs that you have and you start to form a very real and very intense bond with them, simply because you know that they have a basic understanding of how you grew up, of the things that you care about, of the live that you lived back home. Well the same is true when we go to work. Do we want to go to work with people who understand us, who
believe what we believe, who have a similar view of the world that has nothing to do with their opinions and the differences that we share, that’s good, that’s called diversity, that’s called advantages
to problem solving, which is we can all look at the same thing from a different angle and
come up with solutions. What I’m talking about is why should you help each other in the first place? What are you in pursuit of? Now the question is, is what creates that sense of values and beliefs? What creates that sense of trust? Right? Our very human instinct,
we know how to find people who believe what we believe, our survival depends on it. We’re biologically gifted with this idea. If I ask you to go out in the street and find all the people who
believe what you believe, you know exactly what to do. You’re going to strike up conversations, you’re going to start talking to people, and either you’ll have a
good feeling about them, or you won’t. Either you’ll have “chemistry”,
whatever that means, or you don’t. Sometimes it’s quick, sometimes it’s slow, but we know how to do it. It’s called making friends,
it’s called dating, it’s called networking. We have the innate ability to do it. True story. There was a former Under
Secretary of Defense who was invited to give a
speech at a large conference, about a thousand people. And he was standing on the
stage with his cup of coffee, in a styrofoam cup, giving
his prepared remarks with his PowerPoint behind him. And he took a sip of his
coffee, and he smiled, and he looked down at the coffee, and then he went off script. And he said, “You know, last year I spoke “at this exact same conference. “Last year I was still
the Under Secretary. “And when I spoke here last year, “they flew me here business class, “and when I arrived at the airport “there was somebody waiting
for me to take me to my hotel. “And they took me to my hotel, “and they had already checked me in, “and they just took me up to my room. “And the next morning I came downstairs “and there was someone waiting
in the lobby to greet me, “and they drove me to
this here same venue. “They took me through the back entrance “and took me into the green room “and handed me a cup of coffee “in a beautiful ceramic cup.” He says, “I’m no longer
the Under Secretary, “I flew here coach. “I took a taxi to my hotel
and I checked myself in. “When I came down to
the lobby this morning “I took another taxi to this venue. “I came in the front door
and found my way backstage, “and when I asked someone,
‘Do you have any coffee?’ “he pointed to the coffee
machine in the corner, “and I poured myself a cup of coffee “into this here styrofoam cup.” He says, “The lesson is,
the ceramic cup was never “meant for me, it was meant
for the position I held. “I deserve a styrofoam cup.” Remember this. As you gain fame, as you gain fortune, as you gain position and seniority, people will treat you better. They will hold doors open for you, they will get you a cup of tea and coffee without you even asking. They will call you “sir”, and “ma’am”, and they will give you stuff. None of that stuff is meant for you. That stuff is meant for
the position you hold. It is meant for the level
that you have achieved of leader, or success, or
whatever you want to call it. But you will always
deserve the styrofoam cup. Remember that, remember
that lesson of humility and gratitude. You can accept all the free stuff, you can accept all the perks,
absolutely you can enjoy them. But just be grateful for them, and know that they’re not for you. I remember getting off the Acela, I took the Acela from New
York to Washington DC, and I got off the train
like everybody else, and I was walking down the
platform like everyone else, and I walked past General Norty Schwartz, who used to be the chief of staff of the United States Air Force,
the head of the Air Force. And here I did, you know, see a guy, in a suit, schlepping his own
suitcase down the platform just like me, and just a couple months ago he was flying on private
jets, and he had an entourage, and other people carried his luggage. But he no longer held the position, and so now he got to
drag his own suitcase. And never did it, sort of remind me more, that none of us deserve
the perks that we get, we all deserve a styrofoam cup.

100 thoughts on “Simon Sinek’s Top 10 Rules For Success (@simonsinek)

  • Hey, I just saw this video. I would say it's great. To be honest I'm amazed at it. Well according to all this rules,particularly first one(Break The Rules ) , I want to ask that how can I break all these 10 rules??!

  • Thank you once again Evan! Having just found out that my single word is 'Why', it came as a bit of a surprise to me but apparently not to those who know me. To listen to Simon is pretty eerie, he is saying similar things to those that I'd talk about amongst friends. You were right. Depending on the situation I tend towards 'be the last to speak' as I like to understand what is driving people, but I also feel that 'be authentic' is a big deal for me. Which is why I tend to dig my heels in when people try to force their viewpoint on me.

  • Rule 1 You have disrespect for those people waiting in line by pushing in. Elbow everyone out the way to get what you want. It's like the mountain take a helicopter I don't care how you get there. Pushing in line cheating etc that's ok? There is a saying Be nice to people on your way up. Because you might just meet them again on your way down. I find this a very me me me and me first second and third attitude. I don't have this attitude to my fellow human beings in anything I do in life and I'm glad that i don't. If you pushed in front of me in the line I would have no respect for you or for anyone that cheated.

  • Thank you so much for posting this Mr. Carmichael! You are the best, keep it up, everyone believes in you, you can never go wrong, you will continue, life will continue giving you what you deserve, you will always open minds, and show everyone more than what they are used to!!!!! Yeahhhhhhhh

  • I like rule #1 – Break the rules – I did this – I wrote a book, I published the book, and I am marketing the book. So I Believe the best rule is #1 "Break the Rules"

  • It's crazy…I can't but thinking about #8 Be Authentic and how so many companies are guilty of not being authentic 🙂 I think of soft drink companies that are fighting so hard right now around the bad publicity they are getting for all the added sugar in the soda. If they simply spent their time creating a marketing policy about being authentic and about trying to help their customer live healthier lives that they would have that much more good publicity! Come one Coca-Cola and Pepsi? Let's be honest with customers and tell them they should drink 3-6 servings or more a day of your product?? Tell people the truth and they will still drink your product and you will have more people drinking it because they trust you are not lying to them? I think you missed out back in Diet and Zero calorie days by not telling people about the negative impacts of drinking too much of your product?

    Anyway – my two cents

  • But what if..when you reached in to get the two bagels ..there where only TWO LEFT?? Aren’t you PREVENTING the person/people that where waiting in front of you from getting those bagels?? I think you could’ve used a better example for this concept.

  • This was a great presentation that has changed my perspective on my web site design. Everything will be changed to focus on WHY our organization does what it does. Thanks!

  • #1 Break the rules: Tony Robbins agrees with this as he says that if you provide outstanding results to people they will throw away the rules and everything else.

  • What would you do for FREE that you are surprised you can get paid for? That is YOUR Passion! What do you BELIEVE in? Those who lead inspire us!

  • I have to think more on this video. some parts are very deep, and very true. I have to find ways to use the why. #bta28

  • You have to outdo yourself. You can't compare yourself with others. You need to get better everyday and be better tomorrow. Compete with yourself is a much healthier way to improve yourself.

  • Outdo yourself.

    Finite players play to beat the people around them. Infinite players play to be better than themselves.

  • "People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it! "😉
    "The Goal is to do Business with people that Believe what you Believe! " 😆
    And People follow you because of their own beliefs and values…
    Similarly, the Idea of a Leader asking others their solutions to a problem so they can make it their own… & this concept is similar also to "be the last to speak"…though, some devious humans could use that against you…So personally I am still learning to not be as transparent myself as people can use your own views, values and desires against you 😁 Authenticity can bite you on the Bottom 😂

  • 1 rule: Go after whatever you want
    2 rule: look for the real interpretation of thoughts and feelings that can help you positively.
    3 rule: give it time.
    4 rule: sometimes, you may be the problem.
    5 rule: improve yourself constantly
    6 rule: be with the people that think ur their fist choice
    7 rule: listen, analyse, compare and then render your opinion
    8 rule: be yourself

  • With all do respect, this is my opinion for no.1… although other 9 were a great advice which I will adapt.

    1) Of course the people right in front wouldn't mind much cos they have what they wanted when u went in between them and grabbed those Bagels!

    2) People who were standing in line may be from 5th 6th 7th and so on…. would have definitely minded you for barging in and grabbing those Bagels!

    3)You were not concerned or considerate enough or showed any compassion for others in line who were disciplined enough and who were concerned, caring enough for people who came before them!

    4)There are limited quantity of bagels which obviously will be short for those gentlemen who stood in line and were being considerate enough for those ladies, children, senior citizens and others who were much before them.

    5)You were just being an AH, that's it! If every one had done ur way definitely you wouldn't have thought of having a bagel.

    Conclusion: I understand the point you were making, break the rules! Yes, but it wouldn't apply for the situation what you were in.
    Your friend was lot more concerned and responsible than you were.

    Thank you.

  • I'm incredibly impressed with the passion Simon has for the concepts he so eloquently articulates….this really should be the new 10 commandments for the corporate world.

  • It's great to call some kinds of elevated stimulation as excitement but it's also helpful to call it what it actually is. Sometimes I am feeling happy and excited about what I believe to be a positive end result. Sometimes I am feeling fear because the likelihood of pain is significant and sometimes I do wonder if my brain and body wants to cope with the consequences. Excitement and fear are not the same. I am about using accurate descriptive words to define your emotions at different times. Thanks

  • This thing about 'were you nervous'..(4:09) I used to tell my students to work with that rush of energy. Not to run from it, deny it or try to get rid of it…And what winds up happening, if they are doing something athletic, or musical, or theatrical, or they have to make a speech? The nervousness starts to translate — AFTER WHICH IT CHANGES FORM: IT BECOMES EXCITEMENT. AND, it is seen by the audience in that way, as well!

  • I believe – so great! thank you for doing this, for continuing to inspire us to follow our passion – with excitement!

  • Hi Evan! Would love to see a video on Mia Hamm! She inspired a generation of women to play sports – I bet she has some terrific lessons to share. Thanks for your videos – learning a ton!

  • " start with why" start with finding out of why you want to do the things you want to do. Why you want youre succsess, whats youre why?

    Also, " challenge the status quo"❤

  • Simon Sinek is my favorite author! I love all his books, and I finally had the confidence to post my first video of one of them on my channel.

  • 8th-10th rules are outstanding! I replay for many times. Say what you believe! Do what you believe! You will attract people who believe what you believe. Amazing! Thanks so much, Simon!

  • Omg i really liked this person! I always thought that motivators and writers are boring because they always talk about literally the same stuff with different language. But Sinek is totally at the different levels!

  • It might be unpopular opinion but Apple lost its way. It no longer aims to outdo itself, it just wants to make the most money. The Marketing guys are in charge instead of The Tech guys.

  • I recently read a book called DARE: The New Way to End Anxiety and Stop Panic Attacks, and it mirrors Simon's point about training your mind to experience nervousness as excitement instead, but in terms of combating anxiety. It says anxious feelings are often the same as those you experience when you're excited, so changing the way you perceive them can help you overcome anxiety. I've found it to be a really effective coping strategy and it's encouraging to hear someone else talk about its efficacy.

  • Those are some logic, real, timeless, selfish rules that can help not only an individual person but the hall world. It's not about "me me me" but about "me and you".

  • "success", always someone trying to sell you their idea of"success". Got a job? Raising a family? Not hurting anyone? Helping others? Your a success.

  • People don't buy what you do; they buy what you believe.
    What you do is what you believe…

    Isn't that your word, #EvanCarmichael?!?

    POWer!

  • Hi 12/sept/2019 i am watching this in Lyon France at My work place . Just i am listening ,

    I am créating My online business and i don't have any expérience but business is My passion i mn its what i like To do .

    Bêcause of that i am looking for some motivations or motivat in youtube and i Got this great man .

    Very inspirational and i hope you feel great and 2020 Will be great year guys thank you for your sharing this valuble clips

  • I like the bagels story. I #believe if we want something, being patient and taking action now are keys. I love Simon Sinek. 🙂

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