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Becoming Unmistakable

Becoming unmistakable seems to be a popular phrase.

I heard it several times this summer at conferences. I have read about it in many articles. And I probably have mentioned it to my staff.

My question is, “What is it that needs to become unmistakable?”


Intuitively, most of us, especially entrepreneurs, understand the need to strive to become unmistakable. Being unmistakable is the difference between being lost in the crowd versus standing out and recognized as apart from everyone else.

As told by Srinivas Rao, author of The Art of Being Unmistakable and Chief Creative Instigator and podcast host of Unmistakable Creative, being unmistakable means doing things that are so distinctive, unique, and original, that they’re immediately recognized as things that you did.

It means that you do work so distinctive, you don’t even need to put a signature on it – indeed, the work is itself a signature. It’s a kind of creative fingerprint, based on your unique set of skills, experiences and personality quirks.


Following this path to becoming unmistakable, many highly creative and successful people have provided their experience on what it took to become unmistakable. Several common threads include:

  • live out who you are in your uniqueness,
  • be willing to be wrong,
  • persist in honoring one’s gift,
  • it’s about waking up every day and building your dreams,
  • speaking the truth, and lean into your craft long enough to develop a truly distinctive voice.

To Whom

One of the missed significances of becoming unmistakable is the idea of who you are becoming unmistakable for.

For starters, becoming unmistakable is for the creative, the entrepreneur, and the person who wants more from their life than they currently have. Becoming unmistakable is for you.

It’s for you because finding a passion that leads to being unmistakable cannot be directed, mandated, or ordered by anyone other than yourself.

You cannot work to find a passion. Instead, you do what engages you, and by doing more of it, the passion follows. And through this passion, you will develop your craft that ultimately leads to the final product which makes you unmistakable.

Secondly, becoming unmistakable is for your craft. Developing your craft is not easy or simple. It requires work and heartbreak. The passion of being unmistakable leads to a strong sense of purpose which is what enables us to persevere through these inevitable.

Becoming unmistakable has to be about the person and their craft because nobody is interested in the numerous versions it took to write a book, or the failed attempt at writing code, or the many sketches of a building’s design. Consumers only want to see the finished product.

Beyond ourselves, becoming unmistakable is practically irrelevant. It is not that it is not important to others, it certainly is, but the idea is when producing a much higher quality of work, your work will be stronger, more impactful, and resilient.

To quote Sam Altman, entrepreneur, investor, programmer, blogger and president of Y Combinator

You’re better off building something a small number of people love than something a massive number of people like.

Becoming unmistakable is for you the creator and for the craft you are passionate about. Who falls in love with what you do is secondary.

The Bible

2 Corinthians 2:15 says.

We have become the unmistakable aroma of the victory of the Anointed One to God-a perfume of life to those being saved and the odor of death to those who are perishing.

An unmistakable aroma is what we want our work to become. The goal is our work needs to be so significant, outstanding, and distinctive that our consumers immediately recognize it and know whose work it is.

Start today thinking about how you can make your work unmistakable. Is it through an extraordinary care for your clients, a remarkable focus on the environment, or a willingness to admit mistakes and ownership? Possibly you can strive to be an industry pioneer looking for the next breakthrough, finding a way to collaborate with unexpected trades, or open new doors to customers not naturally associated with your business.

Wherever your interest leads, find a passion today that will make your business unmistakable.