The \u201cSaturday Night Live\u201d Cowbell Sketch and its later incarnations are simple, but extremely funny. If you can\u2019t remember it or haven\u2019t seen it yet, I encourage you to watch it. It\u2019s that funny! Now, try to create a series of principles for how to get more out of your life and business using that skit. If you can\u2019t, you might need The Cowbell Principle.\u00a0 In The Cowbell Principle: Career Advice as How to Get Your Dream Job and Make More Money, Brian Carter and Garrison Wynn dissect the hilarious \u201cCowbell\u201d sketch and use it as analogy for success in life and business. Using the same quick wit as a stand-up comedy routine with personal insights and stories, they cover a variety of personal insights and strategies shared through stories, humor, and reflection questions. The result is a book that combines humor and story as a call to greatness.\u00a0 What is Your Cowbell? Cowbells are just one of the ordinary concepts given a new perspective in this book. (There are also bagpipes, cake and icing, etc.) A cowbell, as used in this book, is a talent or skill. It isn\u2019t just any talent like singing, however. It\u2019s the difference between a developing pop singer and Katy Perry or between a R & B singer and Mariah Carey. Your cowbell is a specific talent or skill that sets you apart as an individual. It\u2019s something that only you as an individual can provide. It\u2019s the \u201cgift\u201d that people are willing to pay for (clients or customers) because it is a valuable product or service.\u00a0 In order to help readers identify their cowbell, the authors point out several characteristics that are present in every cowbell: Demand: People want the product or service. Mentorship: There is a path or teacher along the way. Testing: There is refining. Teamwork: There is support for the journey.\u00a0 A lot of these concepts aren\u2019t new, as the authors can attest. The principle behind Seth Godin\u2019s \u201cPurple Cow\u201d and \u201cLinchpin\u201d is about being indispensable and valuable. What is different in this book is how the concept of talent or gift is treated. In The Cowbell Principle, talent is both an individual and group process. It\u2019s also something that involves that can carry over to other fields, not just one. For example, a waiter who has excellent humor could use his \u201ccowbell\u201d for higher tips or a stand-up comedy routine. The setting isn\u2019t always the star. Your cowbell will manifest itself in whatever setting you are.\u00a0 Finding Your Cowbell Identifying your cowbell (or \u201cgift\u201d) is not an easy thing to given, especially when you have bills to pay and no road map to follow. That is why the authors advocate finding a mentor \u00a0(\u201cBruce Dickinson Principle\u201d in the book) and the support you need, for your individual talents and your business as a whole. Taking the time to assess your goals, connecting with people who promote your success, and offer something of value in your journey will help on multiple levels.\u00a0 Once you have some idea of what you want to pursue and how you want to pursue it, it\u2019s time to try it out. Like other books out there, there is a strong emphasis in this book for striking a balance between what makes you happy and what people have a passion for. There isn\u2019t an either/or with your cowbell. For a talent to be a cowbell, it must bring you happiness as well as some level of profitability, whether you want to be rock band earning $100 a night or public speaker earning $100,000. Carter and Wynn advocate taking small, but deliberately powerful steps toward your goals. Step out of your comfort zone as your resources allow, they argue. Be aware, though, that your perceptions about what is realistic may need to be challenged.\u00a0 The Verdict: Is The Cowbell Principle Worth Your Time? The Cowbell Principle is a book I recommend for individual entrepreneurs or business owners seeking to make a more values-oriented change in their life or business. This will suit Millennials quite nicely because of the style of the humor used and \u201csearch for meaning\u201d theme that can be found throughout the book. That being said, everyone will appreciate the stories and deep questions this book challenges readers to answer. In that respect, the book is like "What Color is Your Parachute?" with a focus on surviving in the new business landscape. \u00a0The Cowbell Principle challenges readers to reflect on their notions of what a \u201cgift\u201d or \u201ctalent\u201d is and how it can be used in one\u2019s life. For that purpose alone, it is a great book.\u00a0 About the Authors Brian Carter is a keynote speaker, author, comedian, and consultant. He can be found at @briancarter. \u00a0Garrison Wynn is a keynote speaker, author, consultant who can be found at\u00a0@garrisonwynn. Both use humor to show individuals, groups, and small businesses how to communicate with their clients and customers more effectively. Their book can be found on Amazon\u00a0and the accompanying website at The Cowbell Principle. This review is based on a purchased copy of the book.