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Collection: Leadership - #2 Simon Sinek | What Noah Taught Me About Leadership (TRUE STORY)



I'll tell you a true story.

A few months ago, I stayed at the Four Seasons in Las Vegas. It is a wonderful hotel. And the reason it's a wonderful hotel is not because of the fancy beds, any hotel can go and buy a fancy bed.

The reason it's a wonderful hotel is because of the people who work there. If you walk past somebody at the Four Seasons and they say hello to you, you get the feeling that they actually wanted to say, hello to you. It's not that somebody told them that you have to say hello to all the customers, say hello to all the guests. You actually feel that they care.

Now in their lobby, they have a coffee stand. And I – one afternoon, I went to buy a cup of coffee and there was a barista by the name of Noah, who was serving me. Noah was fantastic, he was friendly and fun and he was engaging with me. And I had so much fun buying a cup of coffee, I actually think I gave 100% tip. He was wonderful.

So, as is my nature, I asked Noah, "Do you like your job?" Without skipping a beat, Noah says, "I love my job." And so I followed up, I said, "What is it that the Four Seasons is doing that would make you say to me, I love my job?"

And without skipping a beat, Noah said, "Throughout the day, managers will walk past me and ask me how I'm doing if there's anything that I need to do my job better?" He said, "Not just my manager, any manager."

And then he said something magical. He says, "I also work at Caesar's Palace. And at Caesar's Palace, the managers are trying to make sure we're doing everything right. They catch us when we do things wrong." He says, "When I go to work there, I like to keep my head under the radar and just get through the day, so I can get my paycheck."

He says, "Here at the Four Seasons, I feel I can be myself." Same person entirely in different experience from the customer who will engage with Noah.

So we in leadership are always criticizing the people. We're always saying, we got to get the right people on the bus, I've got to fill my wrong in my team, I gotta get the right people, but the reality is, it's not the people, it's the leadership.

If we create the right environment, we will get people like Noah at the Four Seasons. If we create the wrong environment, we will get people like Noah at Caesar's Palace. It's not the people.

And you were so quick to hire and fire, you can't hire and fire your children. If there's – if your kids are struggling, we don't say, "You got a C in school, you're up for adoption." (Laughter)

So why is it that when somebody has performance problems at work, why is it that our instinct is to say, you're out.



[YAPSS Takeaway]

Leaders need to practice empathy; It's not the people, it's the leadership.

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