CHAPTER 4

It’s Time to Swing into Action (The Devil Is in the Details)

How to Prepare Your Presentation Material in a Way That Will Knock Their Socks Off

The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It’s as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas but few of them do anything with them now, not tomorrow, not next week, but today. Be a doer, not a dreamer.

—Nolan Bushnell, Inventor of Pong, founder of Atari

About 70 years ago, so the legend goes, a teenage beauty named Lana Turner was sipping a soda at Schwab’s drugstore on the corner of Hollywood and Vine (drugstores had soda fountains in those days) when a big-time producer came up and offered to put her in pictures and make her a star—and he did. That probably was the last time in history that anyone succeeded by just sitting there doing nothing. Today you have to push and shove and hustle and yell, “Look at me!” if you want to get anywhere.

A mediocre idea that has been licensed is a million times better than a brilliant idea that’s gathering dust on a shelf, waiting to be discovered. Forget Lana Turner—nothing happens nowadays until you go out and sell something. And like any good salesperson, you’re not going to hit the road until you’re sure you have the tools you need to get the order. What I mean, of course, is the presentation material for your idea. No matter how sophisticated the executive might be to whom you’re showing your invention, he’ll pay more attention to good looking, professionally ...

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