Think Big: Make It Happen in Business and Life

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“Was there ever a time when you didn’t think big enough?”

“I don’t think so. I always had big plans, even when I was very young. I would build skyscrapers with my building blocks.”

Very few things in America and even in the world are more synonymous with wealth, extravagance and success than the name Donald Trump. Not only is this the name of a man who has not once, but twice risen from the recesses of the unknown to become a cultural and financial icon, but it is also a world renowned brand name. The Trump title attached to anything, be it a building, a golf course or a fashion line carries one clear inescapable meaning: Money.

Donal Trump was born in 1946 and attended the Wharton school at the University of Pennsylvania graduating in 1968. He subsequently went to work from his father, Fred Christ Trump and the Trump Organization, “learning the ropes”, so to speak, of real estate all over Brooklyn, Queens and Staten island.
In 1971 Trump moved to Manhattan and rightly saw opportunity surrounding him. He took advantage of the times and circumstances and succeeded in the remodeling of the old Commodore hotel reopening it as the Grand Hyatt.  This was his first big, successful real estate venture.
His fame, success and legacy grew exponentially all through the 1980’s.

In the 1990’s “The Donald” was plagued by personal and financial strife. He filed for corporate bankruptcy and nearly became personally bankrupt as well. He had extra-marital affairs and as a result he and his first wife, Ivana Trump, were divorced.

By the end of the 1990’s and into the new millenia Trump has crawled out of the hole in which he found himself and largely rebuilt his empire and his image. In fact, he is more famous today than ever before with the success of his Reality Television show The Apprentice in which Trump is the Host and Executive producer. He reportedly is paid 3 million dollars per episode, making him one of the highest paid television personalities in the world.

Think Big: Make It Happen in Business and Life is Donald Trumps answer to The Secret. This book is not so much about money, but rather it is about the attitude, lifestyle and mind-set one needs in order to succeed. Some of the things addressed in the book by Trump and his co-author Bill Zanker are:

  • BIG MO! Momentum and how to get it and keep it.

Whether you like Donald Trump or not, there is no arguing with the mans success. He is absolutely a success. So, when he decides to be candid and talk, it would behoove you to listen. It is also interesting to read Trumps take on himself and the hype that constantly surrounds him. He is largely in touch with his own weakness and is surprisingly self aware. Personally, although the book itself is not the most intellectually engaging piece of literature I have picked up in sometime, it has real merit. It is written in a very straight forward no frills style which is refreshing within the often ludicrous category of “Self Help”. Trump largely keeps it real and uses examples from his own life to illustrate points.
What I will take away from the book more than anything else is the chapter regarding Momentum and his attitude about studying and becoming an absolute expert in your field of interest. He makes it clear that once you have momentum, after the hours and days and weeks, months, years you spent developing that forward motion, it is CRITICAL that you never lose it. It’s twice as hard to get momentum back once you have lost it. Always keep the pressure on.

Aside from that, the concept of “THINKING BIG” rings true with me. An oversimplification yes, but still weighty are the following words:

Its better to aim for the Stars and hit a Stump, than to aim for a stump and hit nothing.

Correct. Trump seems to agree. In addition, although not clearly stated in the book, what I sensed is that according to Trump and Zanker, because most people do not think big, there are openings for anyone to get through if you have the intestinal fortitude to take the big chances and make the big decisions.

My conclusion is that, if you are looking for a book that will help motivate you to work hard and stay focused on your Goals and perhaps even propel you to make your Goals more grandiose this is the book for you. No nonsense. No mystical universal truths. Just common sense advice from a guy who knows what he is talking about.

4 out of 5 stars.

Think Big: Make it happen in Business and Life,
by Donald Trump and Bill Zanker.