I recently had a fantastic revelation that could not have happened if dollar figures were not revealed. A business coach I know mentioned a client – a coach herself – who bills $400,000 each year. Holy smokes! According to this client’s website, this young woman was adorable and quirky (not unlike me, right?) and I began to think more critically about my own early notions of launching a coaching business. All my negative thoughts about such an enterprise (it’s a service business model I want to avoid in an industry flooded with hacks) suddenly went out the window and I allowed myself to dream about my own endless potential.
A second example: An established author friend shared with me her latest book advance: $30,000. She also shared her frustration of not owning rights to her own material, which has lacked marketing support from the publisher and as a result sold poorly, which has all but destroyed her ability to land subsequent book deals. Then last week I read an article by an opinionated blogger (not unlike me, right?) James Altucher who details how he successfully earned many times my friend’s advance in the first month of publication by self-publishing his work.
If my friend had merely complained in broad terms about a lousy publishing contract, she would have sounded like every grumpy writer who has lived in the past 300 years. And if Altucher had merely bragged about his outrageous writing success, he would have sounded just like every egotistical writer who has lived in the past 300 years. But with hard dollar figures to support their cases, these two professionals made strong points for their cases–and strongly informed my next professional steps.