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The Inspiring Man Behind Thousands of Motivational Posters Rare was the '80s office without a motivational poster. We caught up with the man whose Successories had businesspeople hanging on every word.

By Jason Daley

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

They were icons of late-1980s America: framed posters of soaring eagles, rowing teams or lonely mountain peaks, each captioned with a mighty concept like "Perseverance," "Teamwork" or "Excellence" and followed by a compelling quote. They were meant to inspire the millions of people lingering in break rooms, waiting in dentists' offices or staring at the wall behind the boss's head. They were--and are--Successories posters, the brainchild of travel-company founder turned motivational rock star Mac Anderson.

While the posters these days are more commonly the subject of ironic memes or parodies than sought-after office artwork, there was a point in the early '90s when Anderson was shipping 2,000 prints a day, raking in $75 million in one year.

Anderson sold Successories 10 years ago to a private investor for an undisclosed amount, but he didn't leave motivation behind. Over the last five years his multimedia publishing company, Simple Truths, has sold more than $50 million worth of short motivational books--all designed to be read in about half an hour--including 1 million copies of 212: The Extra Degree.

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