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The money playbook

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The hustler does the work that others won’t. The non-hustler doesn’t do work that is inherently difficult or unpleasant. The non-hustler does everything in his power to avoid difficult tasks, especially things that involve long, hard, focused work. The non-hustler hates unpleasant tasks and will go out of his way to avoid difficult conversations.

The hustler looks at difficult work as a challenge and an opportunity for growth. She doesn’t try to avoid it but seeks it out, knowing that even if others won’t do it, there is value in it. The hustler doesn’t avoid unpleasant tasks, even if they mean having to deal with difficult people or situations.

Non-hustlers avoid responsibility for difficult outcomes. They instead prefer to allow others to put their necks—and names—on the line. They don’t want to do what it takes to get things done, and they are deathly afraid of answering to someone if they fail.

The hustler doesn’t wait around to be given responsibility for difficult outcomes. The hustler finds those things that need to be done and grabs the responsibility for seeing them through. The hustler isn’t afraid of failing because he is exceedingly confident in his abilities. When the hustler does fail, he resolves to learn how to improve and does so.

The non-hustler wants more money. When a non-hustler sees an unpleasant, difficult task or one that requires responsibility, he says, “Yeah, I’ll do that when they pay me more money.” But the non-hustler doesn’t appreciate the Law of the Wood-Burning Stove: Heat cannot come out of it until wood is put inside and a spark sets it ablaze.

The hustler is continually given more money and responsibility because he will do what others refuse to do. The hustler is continuously feeding the stove, and because he is always putting more wood on the fire, he is always generating more heat. As a consequence, money follows the hustler like a shadow.

It isn’t that the non-hustler can’t do what the hustler does. The non-hustler is capable of just as much as the hustler, but he’s unwilling. To the non-hustler, the hustler’s success is a mystery. He mistakenly believes the hustler is either stupid or lucky.

The hustler’s willingness to get up early, work long hours, stay late, take on difficult tasks, take responsibility for big outcomes, make the phone calls, have the difficult conversations and make things happen means his path to the top is steep—while the non-hustler falls further and further behind.

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S. Anthony Iannarino is the managing director of B2B Sales Coach & Consultancy, a boutique sales coaching and consulting company, and an adjunct faculty member at CapitalUniversity’s School of Management and Leadership. For more information, go


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