The Sunday Giveaway: The Everyday Entrepreneur Book and Gala

A lot of folks don’t think of Broadway Producers as Entrepreneurs.  But when you think about it, we are all serial start-up guys and dolls.  If you produce three shows a year, you’ve started three brand new businesses, with new products, management teams, marketing plans etc.

You may not have trained in business, but you’re doing it.

And the flip-sideis that a lot of theater folk don’t look to replicate the success stories of people outside our industry.  Oh, no, they think, the theater is too unique, there’s no other business that you can compare it to.

Insert buzzer sound here, because that is oh, so wrong.

Enter successful entrepreneur Rob Basso, who not only built a mucho successful company of his own, but has also expanded into assisting developing entrepreneurs with their businesses.  Rob and his Basso on Business team provides education, networking and inspiration for a lot of folks looking to get to the next level of success.  And it works.

Rob’s got a brand new book on the market called The Everyday Entrepreneur.  The subtitle?  Apply the triple threat of ambition, confidence and conviction . . . ”

He had me at triple threat.

Actually he had me at, “Ken, I’m going to write a book,” becuase if you’re looking to jump start your biz, Rob has got the cables.

Oh, and, I was given the distinct honor of being featured in the book.

Want to read it?

Well, this week I’m giving away three copies of the book, and three tickets to the gala release party on November 15th!

How do you win?  Simple.  Name me a business person, living or not, that you think would have made a great Broadway producer.  For example . . . I think Richard Branson would make a great Broadway producer because his innate ability to create unique experiences and market the F out of them.

And there will be three winners!

Ok?  Good luck.  And if you win, I’ll see you at the release party!


Got a comment?  I love ’em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)



– Seminar alert: Get Your Show Off The Ground – 11/19.  RSVP TODAY!  Only 2 spots left!

  • Chris Greco says:

    Mark Cuban. Spends intelligently in pursuit of a winner. People who work for him love him.

  • Susan says:

    Steve Jobs, because he was creative, determined, focused and talented at creating interest and demand for his products.

  • Robert says:

    Simon Cowell, because of his undeniable passion for the projects that he works on, and the pull that he has in both the US and London (which could lead to a potential transfer from one to the other). His blend of music, business, and creativity I believe would lend themselves well to him as a producer of a Broadway production.

  • Xaq Webb says:

    Walter Disney because he had an eye and ear for great stories that people wanted to see, he continued to push the boundaries of the art styles that were popular, worked tirelessly and was open to invest in and create unprecedented projects (even on his deathbed). Finally, he built an organization that made it easy for everyone who worked with him to share the same passions and energy.

  • Rafi Levavy says:

    I was actually going to say Steve Jobs as well because he “thought different” and was a master of improving existing things (i.e. he didn’t put out the first cell phone/MP3 player/computer, but he certainly improved what was out there in severe ways,) and was able to convince people that they wanted things one day that they had no idea about the day before. He also created projects for himself, not for a focus group.
    (If I win, I would love the book, but am not able to go to the release party since I will be on tour at that point.)

  • Jackie says:

    Steve Jobs for his ability to make something that seems daunting at first (in his case, technology, in ours, theatre (or the arts in general)) enjoyable and accessible to all.

  • Tony P says:

    Steve Jobs would have been both brilliant and a tyrant. He would have not tolerated less than artistry, his love for beauty and design would have supported works of genius, his refusal to accept the normal limitations of time and physics would have transformed audience expectations. And, his experience with Toy Story shows he knew what resonates with the human condition.

  • Kristin says:

    Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel. A man who could envision the success of a little desert town in Nevada can certainly produce a fantastic Broadway show.

  • Tim says:

    Henry Ford. He would streamline the process down to the basics and get theater out to every family in America. However, it may not be the best quality product and he’d have to compete with people importing Japanese Kabuki theater…

  • Doug Braverman says:

    Jesus Christ…. because he could produce miracles, and would also probably plug your show GODSPELL.

  • Anna says:

    Henry Ford would have been a great producer. I imagine he could create a high volume of new works coming out of an assembly line process.

  • George Steinbrenner, because money would be no object and failure would be an unacceptable outcome. Plus, he’d be so controversial that he’d be in the news ALL THE TIME, providing buzz and publicity.

  • Cara S. says:

    I think if David O. Selznick tried his hand at theatre producing, he might have had as great of a success in that medium as he did in film. Though the two areas are very different, there are most definitely consistencies that carry from one to the other and the theatre world might have really benefitted from Selznick’s film experience!

  • Joe says:

    Because he proved that creativity was most successful when backed up by passion and business-savvy!
    Because he revolutionised the music and movie industries – a step away from theatre!
    And because he was an impresario. A real showman who oozed theatricality!

  • John says:

    Mark Zuckerberg who displays sheer marketing genius through his singular vision for a reimagined internet experience.

  • Noah B says:

    Mark Zuckerberg for the soul fact that he created Facebook. He took something simple, like social networking, that had been done before, and created something extrodinary, something that latched on to the hearts (and computers and phones) of 800 million people. If he can do this with the internet, who says he can’t do it for theatre?

  • michael says:

    Jesus. He already had 12 guys who supported his vision and they could spread the word in their various geographic region. He also had a ton of other followers but also haters….but negative publicity is still publicity. “Hey what’s all the fuss about
    ” Jesus is putting on a show”. “MMMMMMMMM….GOTTA SEE IT”.

  • P.T. Barnum….he could get fish to buy water!

  • Mary Riley says:

    I’m going to go with John Jacob Astor: the first mulit-millionaire in the US, a huge patron of the arts and an extremely shrewd business person. To have someone with such a talent for business and a love for the arts, I would have loved to see him as a producer.

  • Jordan Levine says:

    Steven Pressfield’s incredibly unique perspective and ingenuity would make him a fantastic producer!

  • Billy Graham. The advance planning that went into his crusades was staggering. When he came to town, arenas and stadiums were filled to overflowing. He had an entire team that would pave the way for him to come and speak months before he ever set foot inside the city limits.

  • Andrea H. says:

    I’m going to say Steve Jobs cause he was brilliant at marketing.
    Or Andy Rooney. Cause he always spoke his mind. and people respected him for that.

  • Ren Lexander says:

    Oprah Winfrey!
    Not only does she have such a huge public profile and loyal personal following but her people skills would bring out the best in everyone associated it.
    People would turn up to see it just because she was down as producer.
    Just think of the impact her featuring a book has.

  • San D says:

    Buffalo Bill Cody-Now there’s a man who knew about leather, fringe,feathers, and putting on a show!

  • Elise Gainer says:

    Martha Stewart: Not a fan myself, however she still knows how to make a buck even after all the negative press. If you can bounce back from those kind of reviews and after taking a financial hit, then you must have what it takes to produce a show.

  • Malini says:

    Ugh, I hate to say it but Donald Trump. He has no fear. Though Ivanka may give him a run for his money.

  • Starr says:

    Guy Kawasaki … He has the charisma, the ability to direct attention, and a good connection with what an audience is looking for. I’ve never met the man, but I like his style.

  • Margie says:

    Warren Buffet because not only would he create a fund to guarantee investment in all his future shows, but he would also find a way to support non-profit acting class for kids who could otherwise never in a million ears afford to go to one

  • Catherine Yaeger says:

    Do they have to be famous? My Dad would have made a great Broadway producer. He never stopped working. He never had breaks or the occasional day off. He loved every minute of his work and realized that in order to achieve his goals, he would have to put a lot in. Then, when he didn’t achieve them, he just changed his plans and kept on working. Plus, his name is synonymous with customer satisfaction. . . Broadway is for the audience.

  • Heather says:

    Dale Carnegie, he was an amazing person, with an unstoppable optimism and work ethic.
    His books are just as pertinent today as when they were first published, over 70 years ago. He would be an amazing producer.

  • Mary Kay Ash. This cosmetics queen convinced hundreds of thousands of loyal followers to sell her products, believed her success was due to helping others succeed and was a theatrical personality in her own right, with her blond hair and pink Cadillacs.

  • David says:

    MARTHA STEWART and I AM a fan. Talk about “Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, start all over again.”
    She’s always producing. She is constantly coming up with new and educational programing on television and books,- with a theatical, keen eye for beauty and what the public wants.

  • Michael Orzechowski says:

    RAY KROC. The man bought something small and dawdling (at the time) and turned it into a staple that people around the world know. Through publication, selective marketing and a will to make something bigger than himself, he successfully created a name in every household on an international basis. Still don’t know who this man is? Next time you’re in the McDonalds drive thru, go ahead and ask…I bet they could give you a hint. Ray Kroc, ladies and gents, lifted the franchise we know as “Mickey – D’s” in 1955.
    Isnt that kind of how theatre works though? Someone has something small that they have created – they’re baby (play, musical, etc) and through the work of a good producer, that show gets lifted into a household name?
    Ray Kroc may not have been a theatre buff while mastering the McDouble, but I’m sure the theatre would have loved it if he had been.

  • David says:

    I’m going with an oldie but a goodie – Benjamin Franklin. His curiosity, insatiable desire to invent AND improve, and his finger on the pulse of society come to mind first and foremost as excellent producer qualities. His devotion to mass communication would certainly come in handy and his forward-thinking mind and energy would always be an asset to any production. Talk about an ‘above the title’ producer to promote – and what a signature!

  • Z says:

    Steve Jobs would’ve made some remarkable advancements in theater, no doubt.

  • Sue says:

    I, Sue Goodman Cohen, would make a great Broadway producer. In fact, that is my dream job. I have a burning passion for live performance, job experience in both finance and sales, and an MBA in theater management. I have the ability to see the big picture, yet I am detail-oriented. I have dealt professionally with a very wide range of personalities, artistic or otherwise. I have participated in union negotiations, and have worked on several theatrical productions in multitudinous roles. I would love to have the opportunity to meet you, Ken Davenport. I love New York, and I am available on November 15th.

  • Martins says:

    Madonna. Besides being a superstar, she has a unique eye for talented people. She assembles her creative teams in such a way that the results are genius (like the Confessions Tour – directed by Jamie King, was amazing!). If she lacks something in any area, she will find and hire the best person to do that (like arranging her music).

  • Andy Jensen says:

    Doh! Chris G beat me to it. Mark Cuban. He stays focused through the tough times and knows how to draw attention to his product through his actions.
    He’s also a pain in the patootie to the status quo guardians but backs it up with great results. Refusing to settle for mediocrity or tradition, he is constantly trying to make his product and people better while keeping everyone’s focus on the long-term goals.
    My only hope is that he doesn’t turn into Al Davis.

  • Andrew Carnegie. Not only did Carnegie thrive on adversity, he also was hard working and looked at a problem from new and different angles.
    Plus, he always had a back up plan in mind. If the primary goal of a project didn’t work out there was a plan B standing by.
    Plus, his commitment to educating himself and others has had a lasting effect on US public resources. If he didn’t know something he would not automatically rely on others, he wanted to learn the information himself.
    Plus, His never say never attitude is what took him to the top.

  • Max Weinstein says:

    Gary Vaynerchuk is a great business man that would make a great producer. He is passionate and understands the value of people and that every customers experience matters. He is a forward thinker staying on top of all trends in business, marketing and social media and is not shy to adapt.

  • Elizabeth says:

    Eric Lefkofsky, the creator of Groupon. Anyone that can convince a company to let me have a discount on anything from carpet cleaning to a trip to Jamaica, is amazing in my book!

  • John Burroughs, head of Cascade Designs, producer of such outdoors equipment as MSR, ThermaRest, and Platypus.
    He started ThermaRest in his spare time while working full time at Boeing. When ThermaRest got big enough, he worked at it full time. He followed his passion. He bought new companies because he knew they produced excellent products, and they fit his values. He never spent money he didn’t have.
    He keeps production here in the U.S. and doesn’t ship jobs overseas. The only exception is a facility in Ireland that produces for the European market.
    Nobody’s probably ever heard of him, but he’s a true entrepreneur. And a nice man to boot.

  • cathie says:

    Of course, I have to go with Steve Jobs as well. You just know that whatever he did would be new, innovative, irresistible and aesthetically pleasing!

Leave a Reply to Jackie Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *