A Hustler’s Life

by jodymulkey on June 29, 2013

Part of getting up to speed in to my new role at Ticketmaster is meeting folks from around the company and from my group. Typically those meetings are on the phone or in my office. A few folks that I have met in my office have asked me about a particular piece of art (the green circle below).

Jody's office


Ever instantly connect with a piece of art? It is like when you see it and something just clicks. After that you can’t get it out of your head. That happened to me back in March 2012 when I saw Joey Roth’s Charlatan, Martyr, Hustler print.

Charlatan, Martyr, Hustler


The piece first grabbed my attention in one of my social streams. I was intrigued from the get go, it took me a few seconds to process what I thought it was trying to say. For me it really resonated because it reminds me to stay balanced, stay worthy of Hustler status. Always watching my Hustler Ratio (number of things done/number of things talked about), keeps me grounded while I focus on keeping that ratio as close to 1:1 as possible.

I loved the post so much that I bought a couple of prints from Joey’s site  A few weeks went by and one print came, but the other one was no where to be found. I emailed customer service aka Joey. I asked about getting a replacement and let him know that I need the other print for my office because I put the first one up in the Shopzilla Scrum room where we would hold our daily standup meetings. It was a big hit with our delivery teams and fit well with our culture.


You can imagine my surprise when Joey emails back offering to drop the print off in person. I mean who does that?

A week later Joey comes to the office and signs 5 prints for me. So freaking cool!


What Charlatan, Martyr, Hustler means to me:


When your talk far out weighs your work, you fall in the Charlatan category. We all know folks like this in our lives, they make big promises or talk a big game then fail deliver on commitments. For me this is a reminder that I need to stay diligent with my commitments as I never want to be considered a Charlatan. I am far from perfect in this area but I value my credibility and reputation so I am always vigilant.


Letting your work far out weigh your talk puts you into the Martyr category. Constant self-sacrifice and suffering is no way to live. Everyone needs to feel appreciated for their work, everyone should be appreciated for their work.


When your talk is equal to your work, you have arrived at Hustler status. I practice being a Hustler on a daily basis. Hustlerdom is a daily practice.  I say practice because I am far from perfect and I can tend to drift towards Charlatan if I am not careful. .

How to use this in your day job:

I see this piece as a model. A model to help you understand yourself and those that you spend time with. Charlatans are pretty easy to spot, they really aren’t fooling anyone. The Martyrs are more subtle because by definition they are not talking, but you can sniff them out by listening for the victim inside.  Hustlers talk the talk, walk the walk and deliver, period.  Hustlers are the ones you want to surround yourself with as they will help push you to be your best. Game recognizes game so don’t be surprised if you find Hustlers in packs.

So not only do I have a few of these prints, an interesting history with the piece and the artist, I also have a beautiful piece of art that reminds me to be practice being my best self, a Hustler every single day.

Keep on Hustling…

Here is a challenge for you. Tomorrow morning when you look in the mirror, ask the question:

Charlatan, Martyr or Hustler? -> Let your answer guide your day.

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