The Last Dictator Standing by Nandos and the Kreepy Crawly wrangler ad are some of my favourite ads ever. Retroviral, an online communications agency that focuses on making viral content is the brains behind both of these.
When I saw Retroviral founder, Mike Sharman had written The Best Dick I was really excited to read it. A lot of people talk the talk but don’t have the big dick energy or BDE (which I only learned about a few weeks ago, look at me using it like I knew what it was this whole time) to back it up. Creating a $1m business is not an easy task.
What does stand up comedy have to do with entrepreneurship?
The author started out as a comedian which I found surprising. I recently stumbled upon James Altucher, an investor, podcaster, creative thinker, grand master chess player… the list goes on, who started doing stand up comedy to challenge himself.
.@DaneCook has this wonderful premise about relationships turning into relationshits. Sometimes entrepreneurship can be entrepreneurshit and that's ok
— Mike Sharman (@mikesharman) July 24, 2018
The idea of standing up in front of a crowd telling jokes scares me, but I think entrepreneurs and comedians both have grit, tunnel vision and know how to read people, which are all important skills in business. They also need to know how to tell stories.
After reading The Best Dick, here’s what stood out for me:
I’ve got my side hustles but I’ve always been way too scared to go out on my own. The Best Dick explains that there is no such thing as Mr Right (time) and that you should make like Nike and Just Do It. But not before
messing up experimenting on someone else’s dime.
Entrepreneurship is an obsession. Struggling to find your obsession/passion? “Find the one thing that transforms you into a Hoffman-esque Rain Man at a social gathering and chances are that this thing is what you should fashion a business offering around”. Sharman chose storytelling.
Learn the power of no and realise when a client is just not that into you. Instead of acting desperate and throwing yourself at them, look for the no and move on.
Turning f*ck ups into f#ck yeah! I really beat myself when I fail at something. I hate making mistakes but have started to slowly realise that these are part of the journey and necessary stepping stones to success. An entire chapter is dedicated to fups and how they were turned into fyeahs or lessons learned.
Should you read The Best Dick?
You’ll laugh out loud and the analogies are a little unconventional but they get the point across. Sharman gives an honest account of what it takes to become a successful entrepreneur. So often in this industry (ads/pr/digital) people drink their own Kool-Aid. The Best Dick cuts through the BS and tells it like it is.
Disclaimer: I was given a copy by the author Mike Sharman. I’m keeping it because I’ve already highlighted parts and bent the corners (yes I’m that person).
You can watch the ads mentioned here: