"People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it." This was the line from Simon Sinek's Ted Talk that has led leaders across the country to rethink their purpose. 

This past weekend I was able to travel to San Diego to attend Staff Developer Training for AVID. My specific strand was AVID Elementary: Leadership for Implementation. 

One portion of the syllabus that we reviewed included Simon Sinek's Ted Talk: How Great Leaders Inspire Action. If you have not taken a moment to watch this inspiring Ted Talk, take a minute. I have included the video below. 

Through our Leadership for Implementation Strand, participants are challenged to develop their personal "why". Through viewing the Ted Talk or reading Simon Sinek's book, "Start with Why", it is explained when others know our "why", we can inspire, grow loyalty and drive success. In developing your personal "why" there are three questions that drive your response: 
How many times have you introduced yourself and included your professional title? I have personally introduced myself to colleagues numerous times as an elementary principal of a KN-5th grade building. Is that inspiring? Does that grow loyalty or drive success? Why do you suppose we identify what we do with a title? What if we identified what we do, starting with our why, then shared how and ended with what we do? 

Recently, this has also been a topic of conversation on Twitter and Voxer with my friends who participate in #leadupchat. Leaders Nathan Lang, @nalang1 and Jeff Veal, @heffrey have been leading participants to find their why. I encourage you to check it out! 

I close with sharing my "why". My hope is that it inspires you to develop and share your personal "why". 

"My name is Matt Arend and I want build a foundation within students that supports their ability to set and achieve goals they have yet to establish & help students understand their journey will include set backs and obstacles they must overcome; but with grit and perseverance students can fulfill their dreams. 

I do this through empowering teachers and students to be problem solvers and risk takers who are confident in failing forward. 

I am an elementary school principal for students in Kindergarten-5th grade." 

Be sure to share your why! 


Golden Circle. N.d. Graphic. http://www.varchannelmarketing.com/people-dont-buy-what-you-do-they-buy-why-you-do-itWeb. 26 Apr 2015.