Decorative photo for The Question of Why

In leadership roles, it’s rare that we come up for air and take a look around. It was one of those rare times that I had a spark of insight into what was driving Proximity forward at such a blistering pace. It was our people. Moreover, it was not because I was pushing them forward. They were the ones pushing us forward.

So I decided that I should ask WHY? What we discovered about ourselves, our colleagues, our team, and the company was astonishing. The answer to Why was so powerful that it was driving the company forward far faster than any quarterly goal or KPI ever could.

Stopping to ask such a simple question of every person I worked next to had a profound effect on them and most of all, on me. It unites us. It brings clarity. It binds a community.

This clarifying step now is part of the process we make available for each new employee. They get to see and hear firsthand what drives the people around them and, when they are ready, they tell us their Why.

As the CEO of Proximity, I see something more than a group of 20 or so employees. It’s a team that can share a truth tethered directly to what brings them to push so hard for this company. In them, I see the faces, and I hear the words of people that are the foundation of sustained growth. It’s incredible to watch.

A KPI cannot grow a company. All the Level 10 meetings in this world won’t build the next innovative feature. The best earnings forecast in the industry will never realize the little pivot your customers don’t even know they need yet. It is the people you surround yourself with that will find that needle. It is in those voices—the people whose Why has nothing to do with hitting a metric on a PowerPoint slide—that we see innovation and curiosity and a drive to build something remarkable.

Our collective Whys will be the reason our company will do great things for the coworking community and the world.

What a powerful tool, stopping long enough to ask Why.

We believe so much in our Whys that we decided to make them public and available to any customer, investor, friend, competitor, or anyone else for that matter.

Our Why’s matter, perhaps more than anything else.