The Big Idea
Donny Deutsch and Catherine Whitney
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Buy *The Big Idea: How to Make Your Entrepreneurial Dreams Come True, From the Aha Moment to Your First Million* by Donny Deutsch and Catherine Whitney online

The Big Idea: How to Make Your Entrepreneurial Dreams Come True, From the Aha Moment to Your First Million
Donny Deutsch and Catherine Whitney
272 pages
December 2008
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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We’ve all heard the advice to ‘follow your bliss,’ and Donny Deutsch emphasizes that important counsel right upfront in his book The Big Idea. While this is a book about turning ideas into business success, Deutsch doesn’t neglect what is perhaps the very best tip for aspiring entrepreneurs. “By nature, anything new comes from the soul,” he points out, and warns “The day you stop listening to your inner voice, the dream dies.”

With that in mind, Deutsch recognizes that many of us have lost touch with what we truly enjoy and are trapped inside the shouldoughtmust box. To help us overcome that obstacle, The Big Idea provides a simple but effective Millionaire Passion Test. By answering a few questions, readers may discover (or rediscover) those dreams, activities, and wishes that spark every great business idea.

If you have the passion and the idea but find yourself held back by fear of failure, take heart. Deutsch actually discusses some of the benefits of failing –yes, benefits – and gives several examples to back up his assertion that failure isn’t necessarily bad. It can be a “means of nudging you in a different directions,” which often leads to a more original and successful path than the one that led to a dead end.

Deutsch uses examples of ordinary people who turned their ideas into hugely successful companies to illustrate every point he makes, and he makes plenty of them. Inspirational as those anecdotes are, The Big Idea is much more than a list of feel-good motivational platitudes. This book is packed with resources to carry you from that initial light bulb all the way through the planning stages and even into publicity and media relations.

Resources are plentiful, too. Along with organizations, websites, and books suggested for their usefulness at every stage of the process, Deutsch also provides a Big Idea Blueprint. The blueprint contains “twelve steps and fifty questions to put you on your way to the American dream.” This blueprint, which is an excellent guide for building a business plan, is an invaluable aid to everyone who wants to take the plunge and go into business for themselves.

The focus here is on developing ideas for tangible products, although a few services are highlighted. Anyone creative enough to imagine other types of business ideas will certainly be able to adapt and apply these guidelines to different big ideas. The trick here is to act on the advice given, not just read about it.

Deutsch is, of course, the well-known host of CNBC’s The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch, a program that features guests who have grabbed hold of the American dream and turned their interests into successful businesses. Prior to his television career, Deutsch turned his family’s marketing firm into one of the ten largest agencies in the country. For many years he has worked with entrepreneurs at companies large and small, and he shares the many lessons he learned from them and from his own ventures in this entertaining and inspiring manual. If your dream has been lying dormant, The Big Idea may be just the impetus you need to revive it. Once you’re fired up and ready to chase that bliss, The Big Idea is the only how-to book you need for getting your business started and for making it profitable and fun.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Deborah Adams, 2009

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