Key takeaways from our why journey to finding out more than our mission and vision.
Like many people, we got into business because we felt something. We knew that something was missing in what was either on offer in the marketplace, or our current work did not support this said missing thing.
So, how do we find out?
We knew we had started a good thing when we created Generation Collective. We knew that we would be serving and helping businesses get on with selling and servicing their clients, while we took care of the business of getting clients to them.
Seems simple right?
It must have taken us a fair few weeks of looking around, at walls, in articles, in books, at images wondering what it was that really defined us. How to explain us and what we were able to do in a simple succinct manner was proving harder than first thought. So we continued the search for a better meaning to our presence in the marketplace to all the other alternatives clients have access to.
Applying K.I.S.S Principle
We knew that simplicity of design was paramount in delivering a punchy elevator pitch to prospective clients. There was not a chance that any potential customers would wade through long winded laborious waffle of texts or rambling muses on the phone. This continuous search made us start to wonder if we really understood what we were trying to sell after all! Then cue, the explanatory voice of the great Albert Einstein hovered in our minds.
“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”
We remembered our previous experience with Simon Sinek’s leadership work and his book, Start With Why came into view. The claim is that all great leaders and organisations communicate the same way – using a simple idea.
Explaining. Their. Purpose.
We almost always know WHAT business do and sell and we often know HOW they do it (like, what their point of difference, or your USP is) but we rarely know WHY they do it. Why is not about making money, why is the purpose, the cause, the belief you have about your work that gets you up in the morning and resting in the night.
“Why is not about making 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.”
Sinek, TED WASHINGTON, SEPTEMBER 2009
So with Simon on our screens and articles on our desks, we got to work on creating our why. And why or why, it was a process! It took a good 15 hours stretched over a week. We used some extra external resources from Forbes and reviewed book summaries and completed worksheets to summarise the discovery process. The questions found from the Forbes article asked us some pretty deep thinking:
- What makes you come alive?
- What are your innate strengths?
- Where do you add the greatest value?
- How will you measure your life?
This lead to a whole lotta discussion and introspection and questioning on two parts.
- Of ourselves and of what we were trying to achieve as a partnership and as a collective brand.
- What the marketplace actually wanted from an Ad agency like ours.We stopped, and really listened to what was being said out in the digital sales world and how it could resonate with our core beliefs. We could see other fantastic agencies offering far more than what we had in terms of services and experience, however, it was the same run-of-the-mill sell at any cost, cut-throat approach we have all seen 100’s of times over.
We knew we were onto to something. Needless to say, we were pretty pumped by the end of the it.