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A Technique for Producing Ideas
About the author... James Webb Young
James Webb Young was the first-ever chairman of The Advertising Council and he also served as the vice president of the J. Walter Thompson (JWT) Company. Beyond this, he had great influence over the development and evolution of the early days of the ad industry.

In 1946, he was named Advertising Man of the Year. He was also recognized for his war-time impact on the ad industry, as he was named as the recipient of the Advertising Awards Gold Medal for Outstanding Achievements of a Lifetime.

What the book covers...
How It Started
Mr. Young reveals what prompted him to create A Technique for Producing Ideas.

The Formula of Experience
He explains how he came to realize and identify the mind's operative technique for generating ideas as effectively and efficiently as an assembly line.

The Pareto Theory
Mr. Young discusses Italian sociologist Pareto, best know for his 80/20 theory. Pareto strongly believes there are two kinds of people in this world; the creatives and the squares. The creative types (called speculators by Pareto) are defined by a constant interest in the "possibilities of new combinations." The other type, rentiers, are described as conservative, steady, habitual people. Pareto believes that the creatives manipulate the squares.

Training The Mind
The importance of training your mind in the art of producing ideas, using Method and Principles.

Combining Old Elements
"An idea is nothing more, nor less, than a new combination of old elements." Mr. Young believes this is the most important principle in A Technique for Producing Ideas. He then reveals the second most important principle which allows one to make new combinations of old elements - and that is the "ability to see relationships between disparate things."

Ideas are New Combinations
This chapter introduces you to the Method. The Method or Idea-Producing Technique is made up of 5 steps. Step 1 discusses gathering general and specific "raw material". Specific raw material is information that centers on your idea. The product's specs, features, benefits, competition and marketability. General knowledge is important as it gives you more raw material to work with in seeing relationships and making new combinations.

The Mental Digestive Process
This chapter explores the second step of the technique. This involves mulching and digesting the raw material you have gathered. Young explains you must "feel" your way through each bit of knowledge. Turning it over and over in your mind, then extracting multiple meanings and significances. Like a jigsaw puzzle, you play with different bits of ideas to see how they fit together. You will need a notebook to transcribe your thoughts and half-ideas, as they come to you. Sleep is the third stage: letting go allows your unconscious mind to deal with it.

Constantly Thinking About It
The fourth step discusses how new ideas just appear, when you least expect them. Through the entire process of gathering data, mulling over your information, engaging in other activities, your mind will create new ideas without any warning.

The Final Stage
This final stage is your "reality check" time. You must test, edit, refine and polish your idea. This is the time to take your new idea and hold it up to the harsh light of reality.

Some After Thoughts
Mr. Young reveals his own personal experiences with these techniques and re-emphasizes how new knowledge and experience can lead to new ideas and profitable rewards. Why are some people capable of producing great, new ideas on demand? The book closes with examples and testimonials of past readers and how his method has worked for them. You will also receive information on recommended books to further your understanding of the idea-producing process.

"A friend gave me the book and said to read it over my lunch hour. I did so, as it was easy to read and very explanatory. Instantly my juices were flowing again and by using the techniques provided, I was able to come up with several great ideas that we have since implemented."
Rob Walling
– Owner TC’s Chuck Wagon Restaurant
What people are saying...
"James Webb Young is in the tradition of some of our greatest thinkers when he describes the workings of the creative process. The results of many years in advertising have proved to him that the key element in communications success is the production of relevant and dramatic ideas. He not only makes this point vividly for us but shows us the road to that goal."
William Bernbach
– Former Chairman and CEO, Doyle Dane Bernbach Inc.
“This is an excellent and quick read on getting your head ripe for growing ideas. I tried some of the practices and now see that I was really missing something before. I was able to turn a dream into a reality, and I owe that to these insightful writings that inspired me.”
John Sanderson
– Builders Paradise
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