“What’s your purpose? What’s your cause? What’s your belief? Why does your organization exist? Why do you get out of bed in the morning? And why should anyone care?” Simon Sinek asks this in his TED Talk How Great Leaders Inspire Action, in which he talks about the importance of finding your “why.”
In her acceptance speech at FLEX Presents, Ashley Cowles, the 2019 Young Professional of the Year, referenced this TED Talk. “People aren’t inspired by what you do or how you do it; they’re inspired by why you do it,” she said.
All 12 of our nominees, plus many other young professionals throughout the region, are constantly giving back and making a difference in our community.
Whether it’s volunteering for a nonprofit or event, running a business, serving on a board of directors, or going above and beyond your typical duties in your career, finding your “why” and going back to it often can make the long hours and hard work easier, even on the most difficult days.
How do you find your why? Think about what you are passionate about and what you hope to see happen as a result of your work.
“I have days when I wonder why I put so many hours into my business and the community, but I always go back to why I do what I do, which keeps me going,” Ashley said.
Ashley is co-owner of Core Goods, a new store in Oil City, as well as program manager at the Venango Chamber, where she heads the Be Here initiative and helps with FLEX. She also volunteers with the Oil City Main Street Program, Venango Area Community Gardens, and the Oil City Vineyard Church.
“In a nutshell, my why is to make our community a place where everyone can thrive, whether it involves having access to nourishing, locally grown food, gardening with your neighbors, helping those in need, or simply enjoying the quality of life in Venango County.”
Finding your why can help you have a purpose-driven life, resulting in positive change, the ability to inspire others, and personal fulfillment.
Most of us know what or how we do what we do—but do you know why you do it?
Congratulations nominees and to Ashley Cowles, the 2019 Young Professional of the Year!
(Find more photos from the event on the FLEX Facebook page)