BY OJIE KING
I refer to a previous post on this site titled THAT GREATEST BUSINESS IDEA: YOUR ABILITY. The post was about emphasizing that one’s abilities could be the foundation of a successful venture. An interesting point that the writer made was that he deliberately did not use the word ‘talent’ because most of the time, people have a hard expressing what their talents actually are, especially if they cannot sing. Believe me, I have done my research by asking many of my friends of what their talents are and they gave me blank stares or ummmmmmsss. However, the writer defined abilities, as something that is one is very good at. Thus brings me to the model of the post, pun intended, Tyra Banks.
We all know that she was one the most famous supermodels of her time, but one thing all models know is that at a certain age, one’s body really requires food and in fashion, old people and fat people are not accepted at all, hence all models usually end their runs in their early to mid 30’s (that’s if they last that long), well except if you are Naomi Campbell or Kate Moss, who constantly remain fixtures in headlines and still continue to work as models (clearly exceptions to the rules, or are they just beautiful? That’s for the beholder to judge). Well, Tyra, instead of sitting on her ever-growing ass (she’s black, it was bound to happen), decided to use her abilities (modeling in the high fashion and commercial worlds), and turn that into a reality model competitive show called ‘America’s Next Top Model’ where she would be able to teach young girls what it is to be a model and the definition of what the fashion world sees as beauty as opposed to the generic “ Oh you’re pretty, you should be a model”. Since then, the show, currently in its 19th season, with a recent announcement that it has been renewed for a 20th season, has been franchised the show in about 40 countries worldwide. Not only that, as a result of working in the fashion industry for so many years and having to constantly deal with constant scrutiny and dealing with definitions of beauty, she used that as a means to set up a talk show ‘the Tyra Banks Show’ the lasted for 5 seasons, which she was two Emmys for by the way. Again, using the modeling abilities, she has authored a book called ‘Modelland’.
I agree, some might see this as milking the cow but I see at using your abilities, which frankly is what you are good at and that is what she does. Interesting as she turned the one thing she is amazing at (not saying that she is not good at other stuff along the side) into three successful businesses and earning a net worth of about $90 million along the way. Hence at 38, she has transformed from supermodel to super mogul. So, a question I am obliged to ask is “what are you abilities?” and “ are you using them to the best of them?”