To rap fans convinced that hip-hop is only beats and rhymes, people like Khaled and Puff Daddy don't register. It's as if an entire wing of hip-hop can't be enjoyed, simply because it doesn't fall into the expected framework: if you don't rap, you make beats. If you don't make beats, you rap. What else is there?
Putting aside that Khaled does, in fact, make beats under the name Beat Novacane...well, there's a lot else. People expect talent to run the business—but they only measure talent in limited ways. Khaled's talent is most evident in his results. He holds multiple titles; at once, he's a radio DJ, a producer, a record exec, the manager of production team The Runners, a brand unto himself.
Most importantly, he wields power. He gets the best rappers into a room together, gives them a mantra (say, "We the Best!") and transforms it into an all-encompassing anthem, a hit song, and a slogan. His are the tracks that launch a thousand t-shirts.
You can check the resume, as detailed in Kris Ex's incredible piece on the artist for Vibe; he worked to get where he is. Working with one powerful artist is luck. Becoming the go-to guy for all of them? That's a hustle. He knew Birdman when he was at street level. He worked his way into Florida pirate radio. He fell in with the Marley family in Jamaica. He networked with Jamaica's biggest stars, becoming one of the country's most respected DJs—"a soundboy to be feared," in the words of Ex. He soon drew the attention of 2 Live Crew's Uncle Luke, who tapped him for radio. And ultimately, the DJ built his machine from the ground up.
By the time he was executive-producing hit records, it became obvious. Who else could get Drake to give him one of his biggest songs ("I'm On One")? Who could coax one of Wayne's most legendary verses? Once is coincidence. A career? He's taking over.