Real Numbers Project

Confession: I'm obsessed with reading income reports.

It was Abby who first introduced me to the idea when we met for coffee (she pointed me towards Pinch of Yum's) and a few months later she started doing quarterly reports. Since then I've found them from all kinds of businesses. Some are impressive, some are informative, but all of them are educational. Instead of talking about “success” and “growth”, they show you the real facts on the ground. I've considered sharing my own, but that wouldn’t be very helpful to you, because your business is totally different than mine. (You sell a product you make by hand, right? I sell words and education. Our models are different, so the numbers are different.)

But there's something here, right? Something that could serve you and inform you and help you feel not-so-alone … if we could find income reports that actually relate to what you do and that are relatable in their scale.

So let’s do it together.

I’m going to do a series on Real Numbers of (creative) Entrepreneurs – with real numbers and data, from real businesses. In order to do this, I need to collect the numbers – YOUR numbers. But I want this to be totally honest and easy, so it'll be completely anonymous. All you have to do is fill this out. There's no spot for your email address or your name, so no one will know it's you.

And then, I'm going to share it with you here, in the newsletter and on the blog. Not as statistics, but as individual case studies. I'm going to show you what other makers, just like you, are doing – how they're doing it, what works for them and what doesn't. It's my hope that seeing this broad array of ways-of-making-it-work will help you feel not-so-alone, and  help you stop comparing yourself to all those super “successful” businesses that are in a totally different place than you.

But this only works if you share your numbers (no matter how tiny they are). There is nothing to be embarrassed about here – your numbers won't be shamed or judged – they will serve as inspiration and encouragement for your fellow makers.

To make this happen, I need your help.

Fill this out in the next 48 hours:

Don’t know your numbers? You need to. Seriously, for your business to grow, you need to know the very basics of your income and expenses. It’s not hard, and you can start with this advice. Pay Yourself walks you through this math.

And keep your eyes peeled for the Real Numbers series – it'll be coming your way, soon.

For more information on this project …

PS – Got creative business-y friends? Share it! 

What do creatives REALLY make? How long does it take? @TaraSwiger is collecting real numbers. Add yours here:

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