Simon Sinek on Why Travel to Distant and Unfamiliar Places

In Chapter 4 of 16 in his 2012 Capture Your Flag interview, author and public speaker Simon Sinek answers "What Have You Found Most Rewarding About Traveling to New Places?"  Sinek notes how anytime you go somewhere new, exotic or not, takes you away from your day to day life.  Getting exposed to people who think differently and see the world differently you learn new things.  Sinek finds this keeps his mind open while still making close, personal connections in his travels.  Sinek also points out the single most important leadership quality is curiosity.  Simon Sinek teaches leaders and organizations how to inspire people.  His goal is to "inspire people to do the things that inspire them" and help others find fulfillment in their work.  Sinek is the author of "Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action".  He works regularly with the United States Military, United States Congress, and many organizations, agencies and entrepreneurs.  Sinek is an adjunct professor at Columbia University and an adjunct staff member at the think tank RAND Corporation.  Sinek earned a BA in Cultural Anthropology from Brandeis University.


Erik Michielsen:  What have you found most rewarding about traveling to new places?

Simon Sinek:  I mean, any time you go somewhere new, it takes you away from your desk, right? And you can’t learn anything when you’re sitting at home seeing the same thing every day. And so, traveling to new places, they don’t have to be exotic places, you can go to, you know, the middle of the country, you know? If you live in New York, that is an exotic place, but—you know, when you’re exposed to the way – to different people who think differently, see the world differently, you know, you learn new things. You find things that you—that have been there plainly obviously before but you never saw them before, right? And so it keeps your mind open, and more importantly, you also find that no matter where you go, you’ll find people that you connect with on a deep personal level. Any culture, any language, you can find close personal connections. And I think that’s—you know, if anybody who’s sort of afraid to venture, it’s the most eye opening thing you could do is to go away. Not to mention the fact that the single most important quality of leadership is curiosity. And so those who are curious about others and curious about the world, it only benefits you in everything else you do.