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The One-Page Proposal: How to Get Your Business Pitch onto One Persuasive Page Paperback – September 3, 2002
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About the Author
Patrick Riley is the principal agent of Genisis Agents, an international agency representing extraordinary professors and researchers from leading universities and research institutions around the world. A longtime investor, businessman, and entrepreneur, he lives in San Francisco, CA.
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It may seem counter-intuitive that a business proposal should fit on one page, instead of being 10, 20 or 30 pages long, or even longer. But it's dead accurate.
In fact, Guy Kawasaki's 'Art of the Start', for which I was one of his manuscript readers (hi Guy!) says nearly exactly the same thing: Longer is not only not better, it's *worse*. In fact, Guy recommends keeping your pitch deck to no more than 10 slides. (You can see Guy's 'Art of the Start' here: The Art of the Start: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything)
Think of it this way - you want to pitch to successful people with a proven track-record. Those people are *already* short on time, and long on people wanting their attention. You need to be able to hit them right between the eyes - *bam* - within the first few moments with your great idea, not make their eyes glaze over!
What this book - the One-Page Proposal - does, is not only make the case for this concept, but takes you through step-by-step directions for creating your own one-page proposal. It also includes a lot of great examples.
Even if you don't end up using this exact method, reading this book (and it's a quick read) will put the concept in your mind, which will without doubt help keep you focused on what is important - and what *isn't* - when writing your next proposal (be it business, community, or personal).
The book is a step-by-step approach - it is very much a how-to book with plenty of examples. The process definitely "works" (as in I was able to successfully distill a *ton* of data into a 1-page proposal within a week of finishing the book) Now as for whether the proposal is effective in forwarding the proposed action - time will tell! :)
I personally found the instruction on the development and inclusion of a section on financials key - I had always kept spreadsheets separate and discovered new ways to capture key financial points.
My only gripe and why i dock a star is he has a 1-page proposal for the book (which is *really* compelling and well-written) and the online resource onepageproposal.com is no longer up to support his own proposal so not sure where he stands on his desire to provide "tech support" (one of my pet peeves)
All in all, highly recommended book - I am certain this community of readers shall live on to share their success stories!
If you are looking for a straight-forward proposal format to use in selling your ideas to others this is it. No fluff. No useless diatribe. No nonsense.
Following this format (merged with content from Alan Weiss' How To Win Proposal Every Time--also available at Amazon) has resulted in much more consulting and copywriting income than any other proposal format I've tested to date. My only wish is that the author would turn out a software product that automatically changes font size and proposal layout to compliment whatever volume of content is input into the software. But that goes beyond the scope of this book. So for now I'll stick with my proven MS Word templates based on this book and keep manually re-working them on an as needed basis. A big five stars for the book. The format actually works.
This is a how-to book that actually instructs, and far more importantly, the methodology it teaches works in the real world. It is the best instructional business book I have read and sets the standard for all similar manuals.
The applications of what it teaches extend beyond business, to every aspect of life where one person has something to propose to another. The benefits of following this guide can change lives and businesses in wonderful ways.
I have to say, Riley crafts a real "you had me at hello" moment with a riveting opening tale of how he first was introduced to the method: by none other than Adnan Khashoggi. That's what gives the method its credibility. You have to imagine a guy like Khashoggi getting bombarded with proposals, most of them long, overwrought, wordsmithed to death and - more often than not - completely ignored by their target. Khashoggi's message? "You want to get my attention, here's how."
Riley ends the book by showing you the one-page proposal sent to Judith Regan about writing a book for her publishing house, i.e., the book that you're holding in your hands. It goes without saying: the Regan pitch was another successful proposal.
So, this is more than just another boring how-to business cookbook. Any work that manages to weave together Adnan Khashoggi with Judith Regan definitely has my attention. Patrick Riley deserves your attention, too. His book is worth your time and money.
Most recent customer reviews
It is a great starter book to help someone get their ideas and proposal down on 1 page.Read more