When building our skills and advancing our careers, we tend to reach for the same skills again and again. But there's a simple way to make your skills more valuable and career more secure. It's a path that people like Elon Musk, Matthew Inman (creator of the Oatmeal), and Scott Adams (creator of Dilbert) have all used to amplify their core talent and earn more money. I'll teach it to you and show you how to use this method to advance your career.
The 2X Secret: What Nobody Tells You About Earning More From Your Skills
WHAT NOBODY TELLS YOU ABOUT
EARNING MORE MONEY FROM YOUR
The 2X Secret
What do the
and Elon Musk have
Two core skills.
This makes them a
“I can draw better than
most people, but I’m
hardly an artist. And I’m
not any funnier than the
comedian who never
makes it big, but I’m
funnier than most
“The magic is that few
people can draw well
and write jokes. It’s the
combination of the two
that makes what I do so
“Capitalism rewards things
that are both rare and
valuable. You make
yourself rare by combining
two or more ‘pretty goods’
until no one else has your
—Scott Adams, creator of
Here’s where most people go wrong when
deciding what skills or career directions to
develop . . .
When searching for new skills to nurture,
they reach for more soft skills.
Writers learn more about writing.
Historians learn more about qualitative
Art majors learn more about art.
“If you intend to have an impact on the world, the
faster you start developing concrete skills that will be
useful in the real world, the better.”
—Marc Andreessen, Venture Capitalist
For example, humanities majors are
already excellent communicators. They
can write. They can express their
thoughts in persuasive ways.
So instead of reaching for more of the
same soft skills, why not complement your
core strength with a different type of
Take the famous creator
of the Oatmeal.com.
Core skill: drawing funny
But also can code
websites and create online
Developed business skills:
sells products and
If you have a humanities degree, then stack
technical skills on top. This will make you
way more valuable than just another writer.
You could learn the basics of website
architecture. Or learn about financial
If you started with a technical STEM
degree, then stack soft skills on top.
You could learn how to write clearly,
public speaking, or the art of sales.
Knowing how to write might find you a
But a writer with business skills or who
also understands ecommerce is
unstoppable and valuable.
Take Elon Musk.
Core skill: engineer
But also a master at sales
If he only focused on
engineering, he couldn’t
raise the money and
support to fund his
This gives him twin powers: the technical
knowledge to be innovative and the
marketing skills to raise money and gain
You don’t want to orphan your core
strengths. Keep becoming a better writer
But also develop skills that extend your
impact and make you more rare and
My challenge to you
Don’t reach for more of the same type of skills.
Develop a technical skill—that could be basic
coding, quantitative data analysis, or video editing.
Challenge your identity: just because you are bad at
math or failed science doesn’t mean you can’t learn
technical skills like web development. What skills
could you learn that help you amplify your core
How to do this
Pick one small area that could help you in your job. For
example, if you work with business leaders knowing the
basics of financial accounting helps you speak their
Spend 20 hours mastering one small part of this
skill. For example, how to read a Profit and Loss
Ask an expert with this skill: what are the basic
things I could learn to be more proficient? What are
a few basic skills I could develop?
For more advice like this, you can grab my free 14-
day email course on building profitable skills at