Alex Bogusky's Definition of "Success" Contains a $55M Omission

Last Updated Sep 29, 2009 4:37 PM EDT

Crispin Porter + Bogusky's Alex Bogusky has written a blog post titled "Why not take a moment to define success before you pursue it?" It contains navel-gazing questions such as:
Why do I need to define success?
Bogusky's answers are thoughtful and illuminating -- but also misleading unless you know just how much Bogusky gets paid. Here he is on financial success:
... there is really only one definition that is put forward by society at large. Money. Ass loads of money. Don't get me wrong here i think money is great. I like it a lot. But if you have the same definition as everybody else then you're competting directly against everybody else.
... My definition of success was to live in Miami and work with people I loved doing work I was proud of.
... A definition like I had sometimes meant saying no to more money. Yet over the years it seems like the pursuit of something other than money has ultimately brought lots of money.
OK. Fair enough. But just so we're fully informed about how Bogusky defines "ass loads of money," here's his earnout schedule with MDC Partners, the corporate parent of CP+B:

As you can see, Bogusky and his other partners -- which include the folks at Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners -- will share $55.2 million in payments through 2011, and that's not including his regular salary, payments, bonuses, stock and benefits.

So, to save you reading the 1,600 other words Bogusky has written on this topic, let me offer an alternative definition of success. It's when you sell your shop for a share in a $55 million earnout package.