While history heralds trailblazers who challenged the conventions of the past, we’re told that our own success will only come if we play by the rules.
Praised as a “brash and determined ode to the nonconforming entrepreneur” by Publishers Weekly, RARE BREED: A Guide to Success for the Defiant, Dangerous, and Different (HarperOne Hardcover, September 3, 2019), reveals how to succeed unapologetically on one’s own terms.
In RARE BREED, audacious entrepreneurs Sunny Bonnell and Ashleigh Hansberger illustrate how to turn seven vices that society typically deems as dangerous—into virtues and assets. By unlocking these seven traits that friends, mentors, and teachers too often teach us to suppress, the authors discovered those same attributes are also the driving factors to standout success:
Rebellious. Audacious. Obsessed. Hot-Blooded. Weird. Hypnotic. Emotional.
These are the seven “Rare Breed Virtues” that can be harnessed in ways that will prime readers to achieve admiration and success on their own terms. Scores of Rare Breeds were initially told they were “too much” of one of those seven ways to achieve anything in the real world. From Ruth Bader Ginsberg to Tim Burton to Lady Gaga, refrains of “Keep your head down. Stop being so weird. Stay in your lane. Forget that crazy dream” reverberated. But they didn’t listen.
Nor did Bonnell and Hansberger. After dropping out of college in their early twenties—just shy of degrees with zero experience and only $250 to launch their company—they quickly got used to being told they were too rebellious, too weird, and too audacious to achieve success as women in the business world.
Fifteen years later, they’re thriving at the helm of their award-winning agency Motto, guiding both challenger brands like The Smart Co., Johnny Cupcakes, and Munk Pack and iconic giants like NCM (America’s Movie Network), 20th Century Fox, USA Today, NFL, and The Hershey Company to overcome conformity and tap into what makes them outrageously different. They now consult with business leaders around the world on how to stand out using the Rare Breed mindset to harness the power of the seven virtues within their life and work.
In RARE BREED, readers will learn how to stand up to the doubters, resist constant pressure to conform, quiet inner demons, and figure out how to own all of who they are—not just the pretty parts. The authors also explore the dangerous side of the seven traits, and speak to why the borderland between the light and dark sides of our nature is murky and indistinct, making it hard to tell which is which. For Rare Breeds, the impulses that uplift can also undo.
Through inspiring, cautionary, and unexpected stories of enviable oddballs and provocateurs, they illustrate:
• How being rebellious has the power to move mountains—but only if you know what you’re rebelling against.
• How being audacious makes you a prophetic visionary—unless it spirals into reckless hubris.
• How being obsessed creates detailed masterpieces—or dooms you to failure by impossible ideals of perfection and inflexibility.
• How being hot-blooded brings fiery ideas to the table—but can also lead to burnout and destructive tendencies.
• Plus, insights on how to be weird, hypnotic, and emotional for a purpose and maximum impact…and so much more.
The future of business, the arts, and activism belongs to the disruptors—the Rare Breeds visionaries who realize what Bonnell and Hansberger challenge readers to consider in their opening pages: “What if you could change your future not by becoming someone else, but by going all-in on who you are?”
RARE BREED is an unconventional book for today’s nonconformists who don’t fit the traditional mold, offering an approach that’s anything but business as usual. Read it and never look back.
“A good dish doesn’t always start with a recipe, but with excellent ingredients, vision and confidence. Through the passionate and talented writers Sunny Bonnell and Ashleigh Hansberger, you will find all the ingredients that shape the path of many successful individuals in their craft.”
—DANIEL BOULUD, renowned French chef, James Beard Awardee and restauranteur
“[R]eaders will feel that Bonnell and Hansberger are coaching them personally to redefine their limits, skillsets, talents, and comfort zones in the workplace, and to help them dismantle status-quo practices. Readers interested in business leadership, self-development, and entrepreneurship will find this work motivating and helpful in overcoming internal and external barriers to career success.”
“This isn’t a blueprint to success, as we all have to walk our own paths. But it will give you the strength to keep pushing because it’s a beautiful reminder that you are not alone.”
—CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD, American radio personality and bestselling author of Black Privilege
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Sunny Bonnell and Ashleigh Hansberger are the founders of the much-buzzed about branding agency, Motto. The duo started Motto in 2005 with $250 in a small town in South Carolina, and now have offices in Dallas and New York City.
Their approach to branding and business innovation is high on creative spirit, rule-breaking and wave-making, so it’s no wonder all kinds of organizations and businesses, from international behemoths to local and beloved brands, turn to Sunny and Ashleigh to help their brands thrive. Ambitious startups in wide-ranging fields—food, technology, fashion, beauty, and humankind—and household names like 20th Century Fox, USA Today, NFL On Location, E & J Gallo Winery, and The Hershey Company all sit on Motto’s client roster.
The pair have been featured in major publications and national media, including Forbes, Entrepreneur, Inc., Cheddar, The Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, and CNBC, and have graced lists such as GDUSA’s Top 25 People to Watch and Inc. 30 Under 30 list of America’s Coolest Young Entrepreneurs.
In their debut book, Rare Breed: A Guide to Success for the Defiant, Dangerous, and Different (HarperCollins, 2019), Sunny and Ashleigh go against conventional thinking and shine a spotlight on the controversial traits that can lead to incredible breakthroughs and triumphs in business and in life.