Driver for Innovation and Trust: The “Why” of a Company

Henrik Stamm Kristensen

trust bStart with the Why by Simon Sinek is one of the books that I read very carefully as of late, as I referred in previous posts ‘Environment of Trust for Open Innovation’ and ‘What makes us succeed?’. In terms of creating spaces for innovation and real value propositions for customers, this text also has much to contribute. The Golden Circle model presented by Simon Sinek in the book provides a way to communicate a company’s beliefs: The WHY they do WHAT they do and HOW. If they are consistent with this, they are able to inspire their employees, customers and stakeholders, says the author, and foster innovation and trust-based relationships.

Innovating from the Why.
People inspired by the “Why” can become highly motivated people with a reason for success. That’s what happens in highly innovative companies such as Apple, according to the author of the book. Companies must create the environment in which great ideas become a reality and give their employees not something to work on but something to work forward to, and that is a purpose or a challenge around which to develop ideas. Innovation normally happens out of the competition and Apple was able to succeed, creating new categories, versus others developing innovative computers because it had a “Why”.

Trust-based relationships.
“The goal of business should not be to do business with anyone who simply wants what you have. It should be to focus on the people who believe in what you believe in. When you are selective in doing business with those who believe in your WHY, trust emerges”, explains Sinek in this book, who asserts that trust isn’t a rational experience for customers or partners, but a feeling, and neither a checklist objective. “Trust starts to emerge when we have a sense that another person or an organization is driven by things other than their own self-gain”, he clarifies.

The consequence of trust in business-to-business and business-to-consumer relationships is a sense of real value for both parts. Additionally it enables collaboration and the creation of win-win solutions.

Simon Sinek reminds us that “we succeeded as a species because of our ability to form cultures”. And, for that, trust is also crucial, as it is to build movements and change the statu quo. That is precisely what we want to do at Blendhub in the food powder blends sector, using transparency to create trust-based relations with our partners and customers, and boost collaboration within the food industry to create a movement to overcome the challenge of feeding the world. Our “Why” is to lead the change in the agrifood value chain that enables the access to basic foodstuffs to be more just and safer, reaching more people in more places, and we want to do it using transparency to allow a sector that traditionally has operated with opacity to grow, to innovate faster, and to better compete. We will do it creating food powder blends, based on open formulas and flexible solutions.

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