Unforeseen Doors of Opportunity

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression, “Money’s no object.”
It’s a nice thing to say. But sometimes, we let money, or the lack thereof, get in the way of getting ahead. When I’d started a business writing anthems for sports teams, my partner and I got a meeting with the New York Yankees.
Now, going in, I knew the Yankees were going to be a tough sell—they’re all about tradition and are conservative in their marketing. A rap song for them wasn’t going to fly.
So, when we were in the meeting with the famed franchise’s marketing department, and they weren’t biting, I wasn’t all that surprised, so I didn’t press.
I read the room, and the room was telling me not to go for it.
And as the meeting began to wrap up, everyone was smiling and shaking hands, but we were walking away empty-handed.
On the way out the door, the team’s marketing director, a guy named Derek Schiller, told us that he had the most amazing box seats for sale. He called them “legend seats” and said the team had built them out into the field for the World Series.
In the boxes sat Major League Baseball officials, like the commissioner, and real, high-end sponsors of the Yankees. There were only 16 of them made. And he offered them to us before they went on the market.
“They’re going to be the most valuable piece of real estate in professional sports,” Derek said.
I was 26ish, and although we had had a nice score with the Knicks song, my business hadn’t exactly cracked the Fortune 500 list—I made $37,500 that year.
As I remember, the seats were a thousand a piece, four to the box, or four thousand a game. When you times that by 81 home games in a season, the total cost came to $324,000. Yikes.
There was no way I could say yes...
Later that night, I was alone in my office, and I couldn’t get the seats out of my head. My gut instinct was that they’d always be in demand and that there was no chance we’d lose money.
Obviously, you can’t guarantee that—but I wholeheartedly agreed with him. It was an unbelievable investment opportunity. Derek told us that they’d be available for 24 hours. It felt right—so I picked up the phone and told Derek we’d take the tickets.
I then left a note for my partner explaining what I did.
“We’ll figure it out,” I wrote.
And we did figure it out. We borrowed money from a friend who went in on the seats with us.
In the second season, I split them with Jay Z.
I had the seats for ten years, and they paid for themselves a hundred times over.
We brought customers, prospective clients, family, and friends and saw some of the greatest baseball played from the best seats in the house.
Just the feeling of walking down to them was worth the price of admission. We’d walk past the Goldman Sachs box, the Citibank box, and boxes adorned with the names of the biggest law firms in Manhattan to get to ours.
Sure, I didn’t get hired to write a song for the Yankees but I left with an asset that infinitely changed the scope of my business. I’d say that’s a success.
And I’m not telling anyone to over-leverage themselves or to put themselves in debt, but opportunities come at us every day, and if we let the cost always keep us from taking them, we might be cheating ourselves out of an experience much richer than the price tag.
Perceived failure or financial barriers need not stifle growth or success; instead, they can open unforeseen doors leading to greater triumphs.
Intuition, adaptability, and a willingness to take risks can open doors we don’t even know exist.
Challenge yourself to look beyond immediate obstacles and apprehensions and embrace opportunities that resonate with our instincts, knowing that what seems like a setback might actually be a pathway to something richer and more fulfilling.
Whether it's business acumen or life in general, the essence lies in trusting ourselves and not allowing the fear of failure or financial constraints to deter us from pursuing experiences that might be transformative.