Tag Archives: Why

Why Come?

My entire career, I’ve been watching.

Every interaction, every meeting, every pitch – I’d watch and wonder HOW?

HOW can I be more like this person or avoid becoming that person?
HOW can I get this or prevent that?
HOW can I be successful?

The answer was simple.
Stop asking HOW and start asking WHY?

WHY is this worker kicking-booty, while that worker goes unnoticed?
WHY do some people enthusiastically embrace their work, while others stay arms-length-removed?

HOW questions show our age.
Maybe not the number of candles-on-your-birthday-cake age but the age of our thinking.

HOW questions are so-20th Century.
HOW questions are PROCESS questions, seeking only the repeating and dependable patterns that drove the industrial age.

HOW thinking goes like this:

If someone did this and got that.
Then, if I do this, I too will get that.
Thus, if I do more of this, I will get more of that.

Too bad, so sad, wrong answer.
It doesn’t work that way and never did.  

WHY thinkers know:

Life doesn’t work like an assembly line.
Patterned predicable behavior isn’t the norm – not even close.

In the supremely-un-factory-like human world,
In workplaces filled with sensitive people,
Success isn’t a controlled output.
Success is an emergent quality,
A celebration,
A collaborative triumph over all the other possibilities.

Success arises from the delicate, and oh-so-fragile, interplay of human motivations and desires.

Asking WHY transforms the mundane into the magical.

WHY connects people where it matters – by connecting WHY it matters to people.

Too fluffy for you?
Too touchy feely to fit in your world of work?
HOW’S that working out for you?

If your work life isn’t as fulfilling as it could be,
Maybe it’s time to ask yourself, WHY COME?

Share why you’re thinking the way you are with me directly at: jeff@jeffkaplan.com.

Until next week, stay connected!


Smoking and Motivation

  1. New research suggests ads with messages about “why” to stop smoking can influence a smoker to quit within a month
  2. However, there is no evidence that ads with messages about “how” to stop smoking influence behavior
  3. Researchers argue that “why” ads are more effective because they show graphic portrayals of the health consequences of smoking

Source: The Impact of Cessation Media Messages on Cessation-Related Outcomes: Results From a National Experiment of Smokers. American Journal of Health Promotion, 2014