What Masterchef Contestants and Entrepreneurs Have In Common

How a pinch of salt can change everything.

I don’t like cooking but I really love watching cooking shows. My favourite is Masterchef. The reason I love it is because it’s not about the food, but the fact that how they cook reveals their true nature.

For example, there’s a segment where everyone has to recreate a dish using a long and detailed recipe from a famous chef like Heston Blumenthal. Halfway through, the recipe calls for a pinch of salt. So they add the salt, taste it and then say to no one in particular, ‘I think it needs more salt’ and they toss another teaspoon in.

And the people at home watching, like me, shout out ‘Nooooo! What are you doing? Are you crazy! Just follow the recipe! It’s by Heston! Don’t mess with the Hess!’

But no, they push ahead and put that salt in and we just know that their ‘Masterchef journey’ has come to an end. Or has it? This is when it gets interesting because when it comes to the taste test, the judges go one of two ways.

They either taste it and say, ‘Ewwww, too much salt! What did you do differently? or, as is often the case when someone steps outside of the zone and does something different, they say, ‘Wow! That tastes fantastic – what did you do differently?’

And more often than not, it’s that person who goes on to win the show because they are the innovator, the crazy one, the maverick who says, ‘I know what I’m meant to do. I know what the others are doing. I know what the ‘recipe’ says, but I’m going to do it my way. And this maverick attitude often pays off.

It’s this same quality we also see in successful business people – the people with the ideas that everyone else says, ‘You’re crazy! That’ll never work! Just follow the recipe!’ …who go on to turn those ideas into multi-million dollar businesses.

Having interviewed 40 of Australia’s top entrepreneurs for a book about how to succeed in online business, I discovered that there are lots of reasons why they’ve been successful but following their own recipe and trusting their own instinct is a big part of it.

If you want to stand out from the crowd, have the confidence to add that ‘extra pinch of salt’ to your ‘recipe and see where it takes you!