Building an Inspired Workplace

Simon Sinek and I had a chance to sit down and talk about what ended up being a focus on various inputs to build an inspired workplace. Whether it be shifting away from the soulless manner in which we view employees as resources or learning what it means to serve those who serve others, leadership is about inspiring people to connect with the bigger picture, the Why, to do great things. The powerful leadership lessons go way beyond the workplace. Simon’s message is one that calls upon each of us to reconnect with our humanity and let it guide how we lead, inspire and motivate employees.

To do work that matters, employees need a safe work environment. It’s when this is created that employees can maximize their strengths, talents, passions and focus. But it goes beyond just mere safety. A vital input is a leader’s willingness to put people first. As Simon explains, leaders will eat last to ensure the team is cared for and has what they need to succeed. It’s this simple gesture with nuanced meanings that can help people thrive no matter what their work is.

To Quote Simon Sinek

  • “It’s when people become abstractions, we are more capable of making decisions that can cause harm.”
  • “In organizations where [employees] feel safe amongst their own, innovation skyrockets, trust skyrockets, cooperation skyrockets, productivity skyrockets, and they combine forces to face the dangers.”
  • “The concept of the manager is not conducive with an organization that is hoping to build trust and cooperation in their organization. We’re looking for leaders.”
  • “How do you get people to feel like they belong? Well, is starts with values and beliefs.”
  • “A leader puts the interest of their people before they put the interest of themselves.”
  • “This is the qualification required for leadership: to care for the people to the right of us and the people to the lefts of us. That’s all it is. And when we do that, people will trust us, and most importantly, they’ll want to be there for us.”

Connect with Simon

Twitter: @simonsinek

Instagram: Simon Says Inspire


Simon’s Books


Leaders Eat Last

Start with Why

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Change Leader | Speaker | Writer Co-founder and CEO of Switch and Shift. Passionately explores the space where business & humanity intersect. Promoter of workplace optimism. Believes work can be a source of joy. Top ranked leadership blogger by Huffington Post. The Optimistic Workplace (AMACOM) out 2015

  • Margy

    Inspired by this conversation, I sent the link to some people I thought might also be inspired by the concepts discussed in this conversation. My son wrote back to ask, “What is your why?” What a great exercise!

  • I am always amazed at how little leaders will think about building inspiration. We spend a lot of our life at work, why not make it inspiring?

  • Kelsey Smith

    Brought to tears by the fallen soldier story. What a great example of serving others that serve. Thank you for this podcast can’t wait to read the book.

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    There’s a more human way to do business.

    In the Social Age, it’s how we engage with customers, collaborators and strategic partners that matters; it’s how we create workplace optimism that sets us apart; it’s how we recruit, retain (and repel) employees that becomes our differentiator. This isn’t a “people first, profits second” movement, but a “profits as a direct result of putting people first” movement.

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