"What's your specialty?"
That was a question Richard Carufel at Bulldog Reporter asked me the other day. Clear doesn’t have a specialty, I told him, and he included that information in his coverage of our launch:
Here’s what I meant by that. Industry knowledge obviously matters a lot because it leads to us knowing what we’re talking about. We can’t deliver good work that advances a client’s business or policy interests if we don’t know what they do and how it fits into broader news narratives.
But we can learn new things — what new products do, how new business models disrupt older ones, why a particular opinion is newsworthy — incredibly quickly. That capability is one of Clear’s best competitive differentiators, and it comes from genuine curiosity and the ability to ask good questions. We listen instead of wait for our turn to speak.
Coincidentally, Thomas Friedman’s latest column addressed a similar theme. He covered what Google looks for in new hires. To my delight, he found that the least important attribute the company looks for is “expertise," according to the executive responsible for talent acquisition and management at the company.