Sometime last month, someone purchased the 1000th copy of Working Out Loud. I mention it not because it’s a big number (it isn’t), but because it’s a milestone of a kind, and I wanted to share it with you as well as a few things that have surprised me so far.
A few surprises
Originally, I figured people would find out about the book via the blog, buy a copy, and maybe tell their friends about it if they liked it. That does happen sometimes, but here’s something I didn’t expect.
More than half of the orders so far are from bulk orders from 4 different companies.
A company in Washington, DC (not the one I work for) ordered 300 copies while I was on holiday in Japan. What made it especially memorable was that it was a corporate bookstore and I had to figure out how to take the order and credit card payment directly. That was a thrill on several levels.
My firm did indeed place the first bulk order, which was a shock at the time, and that has led to something wonderful and surprising at work.
Working Out Loud is now part of my job, and there will be 150-200 circles at the firm this year.
I started presenting Working Out Loud at career events, and demand gradually grew. Now I’m holding these events in multiple cities and countries, and every week I'll get mail about additional opportunities.
Perhaps the nicest surprise is the wide range of people I’m meeting around the world. They’re in industries as different as banks, healthcare, and manufacturing; they’re different ages, they have different experiences and reasons for working out loud; and they’re in a wide range of locations.
There are Working Out Loud circles in 11 countries: US, UK, Australia, India, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Sweden, Canada, Japan.
In November, for example, I’ll be visiting 3 cities in Germany to speak about Working Out Loud at a conference and to help spread the practice there. My interactions with people around the world have made me appreciate how the desire for a better career, and life and for deeper relationships, is universal.
The book launch party that lasted 3 years
A year ago, when I thought I was close to publishing the book (an event that happened 9 months later), I wrote about the kind of book launch I envisioned. I wrote about how I was inspired by the incredible success of Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now which took 3 long years.
“While I enjoyed Tolle’s books and the rags-to-riches nature of the story, what I liked most was how he originally published his book to help other people. He had no hope of making much money with it, yet he did it anyway. And word spread.
That’s my approach withWorking Out Loud. It’s meant as a gift. If people find it useful, they’ll tell a friend or pick it for their book club. Some will form a Working Out Loud circle and put the ideas into practice. Maybe a few thousand people might buy a copy in the first year. Maybe word will spread. Maybe not.”
I appreciate each and every order, each and every review, each and every contribution to the Facebook community, each and every email.