It’s hard to forget Liam Neeson’s legendary words in the movie “Taken”: “I don’t have money. But what I do have is a very particular set of skills”.
Cartoonist Scott Adams shares that description… and guess what? you too:
Adams started cartooning while working at what we would assume a very boring job.
After being repeatedly passed over for promotion, his frustration piled up.
“The day you realize that your efforts and rewards are not related, it really frees up your calendar”, he’d say.
But ‘free up your calendar’ is an euphemism, as he had to draw his cartoons at 4:00 am.
Think of him as a Jocko Willink doppelganger with pencil and paper screaming “IMPOSE YOUR DRAWING” in the wee hours.
I know this sounds like your regular hustle story but there’s a catch.
I read one of Adams’ blog posts back in 2007 about skills.
There, he states a very interesting fact:
“I can draw better than most people, but I’m hardly an artist. I’m not any funnier than the average standup comedian […], but I’m funnier than most people.”
See a pattern?
Adams’ point is that you don’t have to be the Federer of one particular skill.
That is excruciatingly difficult, there’s too much competition, and requires timing and luck.
Choose the right combination of skills… and you *might* be onto something.
He had decent drawing chops, and had good sense of humor. When he created Dilbert (his star cartoon), he focused on a very particular niche: office life.
So he came up with a unique set of skills… and busted his ass like GaryVee on steroids.
¿How can you replicate this?
We’ve all been told, “If you’re going to be a pizzaiolo, then you must be the BEST in the world”.
That was in good faith, but unrealistic. Let’s twist it a bit:
“If you’re going to be a pizzaiolo, you must become a UNIQUE pizzaiolo”.
And here your personality is PARAMOUNT.
Two more tips from Adams:
One of those skills should be communication. Whichever medium you prefer.
Writing, drawing, making podcasts, videos. Pick one.
In my experience, videos include everything… and people get to KNOW you.
But I know it’s not for everyone, though.
The second tip is a neat trick Adams used in his comic strips. He included his email in every one of them.
So he had direct feedback from readers. And it was virtually impossible to run out of ideas.
Make sure you are always listening to your audience. It’s critical.
I would be glad to help you in your search for your unique set of skills.
(Please read that last sentence with Liam Neeson’s voice)
All you have to do for a start is download my free tips ebook:
Jesús Enrique Rosas
I unlock business leaders’ social skills.