There are always new workshops, seminars, events, and conferences coming down the pike. While they’re all tempting, here’s a quick way to get to the ones you simply cannot miss.
In this step-by-step guide, I’ll show you how to pay for any workshop and share what I’ve spent my educational cash on this year. (What I reveal just might surprise you.)
1. Take a hard look at the numbers. Refuse to say the word “can’t.”
Before you decide whether you can afford to attend the workshop, figure out exactly how much it’s going to cost to attend: registration fees, transportation, food, accommodation, and the event itself.
Come up with a single number that represents how much you’ll need to attend the event.
Then see if it can happen by examining three things: the cash you currently have, the cash you expect to come in based on last year’s income during the same time period, AND how much it’s costing you to NOT go.
Yup, how much it’s costing you to NOT go. If you’re faltering with your marketing at every turn and the perfect marketing workshop comes up — how much is it costing you to NOT go? If your marketing could be 30% more effective over the course of a year, and you generated $30,000 in income last year, that workshop will make you $9,000 within a year.
(Likewise, if you’re a beermaker with an opportunity to learn from the world’s oldest and wisest beermaker before he kicks the bucket…well, you should go. And bring me back some lederhosen.)
This is where I watch peeps fall down, again and again.
By only looking at what’s currently in the bank, you limit your own potential.
By failing to take into account what you’re losing by NOT attending an event, you limit your own growth.
Worse, I see peeps spending $79 here and $149 there — spending thousands over the course of a year — when a single event or workshop would have cost the same amount and gotten them further along in their business.
If $5,000 worth of haphazard solutions make you $7,000, but a $5,000 workshop makes you $20,000 — you should be attending the workshop. Unfortunately, it’s hard to think this way because there’s less risk involved in sticking to $79 solutions. If they don’t work, we figure, we won’t be out much. But if the event delivers exactly what it promises, and does work, you’ve robbed yourself of an incredible experience.
My personal cap on education is 20% of my income for any given year — and yes, I’ve spent that much to push my own boundaries. I’ve participated in classes regarding marketing, business techniques, weight loss, being vegan, being well-f*cked (dude, I can’t make this stuff up!), my energy and chakras, and a high-level mastermind. Surprisingly, the education about stuff not directly tied to business has fueled my business growth tremendously.
Twenty percent of your income. GULP. It will pay off in ways you never thought possible. When you take responsibility for your own education, you soak up every ounce of the knowledge being delivered, the wisdom being tapped, and the camaraderie being unleashed.
Decide you’re going to be there — on that stage, with those people, hanging out with that leader, or learning from that teacher. You don’t have to know exactly how, but you DO have to decide the workshop/event/conference is what’s needed next for you to grow your business.
When I signed up for a $20,000 mastermind group, I didn’t have that $20,000 earmarked and sitting in the bank, ready to make a lump sum payment. I did know that I had found what I needed, and I would do the hustle necessary to get to work with her. I made back five times my investment within three months.
Amazing things happen when you commit to your own growth.
3. Tell others what you’ve decided.
The minute you say what you want out loud to another human who loves you, he or she will do his or her best to help you make it happen. Be specific about how much money you’re looking to come up with, and brainstorm ways to make it rain dolla bills.
Use that single number you generated in step one to tell peeps precisely how much you’re looking to make. Whether you need to generate $600 or $60,000, saying the amount out loud helps to make it real, and much less scary.
4. Make a plan.
Once you’ve decided that yes, you are going to learn with an individual or a group of individuals, you’re going to need a plan. I suggest using the free 15-Minute Marketing Calendar to create your money-generating plan. Layer in payment dates for the program of your choice so you know which income targets are non-negotiable. Then, get to hustling like you’ve never hustled before.
For more hustle at the ready, revisit my tips on how to hold a sale without breaking your brand or how to get people buying and booking whenever you want.
5. Refuse to punish someone new for others’ mistakes.
When it comes to educational events, we’ve all been burned. We’ve all walked away with less than we expected to get. Instead of assuming the event you signed up for is going to be just like that, assume the opposite. Assume it’s going to change your life. Then make it so!
Give this new experience the benefit of the doubt by actively seeking the good, the positive, and the profound. Instead of focusing on an unfortunate detail, like the number of bathrooms in a venue, focus on the tremendous effort that resulted in bringing like-minded, gorgeous souls together. Forgive the flaws, especially if they’re beyond the control of the person hosting the event.
6. Connect, connect, connect.
From the minute you sign up for a workshop, seek out people who are also attending. Reach out, make a connection, and get to know ’em. By the time you meet in person, you’ll feel like you’re hanging with dear old friends. This will make your experience deeper, richer, and more fun. Guaranteed.
Of course, this step-by-step method also applies to paying for humanitarian trips! If you’re dying to take a trip to India for your latest photography project, get yourself a solid monetary number and refuse to be daunted by it. A $3,000 trip pricetag is just 6 $500 sessions or 3 $1,000 sessions or 10 $300 sessions away.