If your goal is simply to be better than the rest, you may be headed down the wrong path, suggests leadership expert Simon Sinek.
Simon Sinek sees business play two types of games – the finite game and the infinite game. Finite games, as he likens to chess and football, have set rules, players, and outcomes. The goal is to beat the competition, be number one, be the best. According to Simon, this translates to a finite mindset where you see every hurdle as an obstacle to achieving your end goal. However, when you apply this mindset to business, it often comes at the cost of trust, cooperation, innovation, and ultimately, the shortening of the corporate lifespan.
Why? Because business is not a finite game, it’s infinite. Infinite games acknowledge that we live in an environment with an ever-evolving host of players, changing rules, and varying potential outcomes with only one competitor – yourself. Adopting an infinite mindset is crucial for business leaders to be both effective and sustain the longevity of their businesses. It may seem like you’re working towards overcoming small challenges, but an infinite mindset will help you weather large-scale changes and disruption to your company and industry; being number one today doesn’t guarantee you will be number one tomorrow.
“We get to choose how we run our businesses. It’s not a question of right or wrong, it’s just a choice to play by the rules of the game we’re actually in. Or not.” – Simon Sinek, NBFSweden 2019
It’s easy enough to say that you should change your ways, but how do you start? Simon suggests five practices to find, integrate, and lead with an infinite mindset. The first practice recalls your company’s vision. Start by asking yourself whether your company has a vision that inspires and compels people. Sinek calls this the just cause, a driving purpose that is so great that your people would be willing to sacrifice for its advancement. This is more than your “why” – it’s an inclusive force that binds your teams and calls them to both serve and act.
To learn more about the just cause and Simon’s other four practices, download our free Executive Summary from our Sweden and Norway events.