It's a Jungle in There: Inspiring Lessons, Hard-Won Insights, and Other Acts of Entrepreneurial Daring

Overview

As a burgeoning businessman in the 1980s, Steven Schussler stopped at nothing to make his dream of a tropical-themed restaurant come true, even turning his home into a rainforest-complete with indoor waterfall, life-size replica of an elephant and 40 tropical birds-in order to have a prototype to show potential investors. Drawing from his own life and business triumphs, Schussler offers would-be entrepreneurs a new way of utilizing creativity to achieve their dreams.
Schussler ...

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It's a Jungle in There: Inspiring Lessons, Hard-Won Insights, and Other Acts of Entrepreneurial Daring

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Overview

As a burgeoning businessman in the 1980s, Steven Schussler stopped at nothing to make his dream of a tropical-themed restaurant come true, even turning his home into a rainforest-complete with indoor waterfall, life-size replica of an elephant and 40 tropical birds-in order to have a prototype to show potential investors. Drawing from his own life and business triumphs, Schussler offers would-be entrepreneurs a new way of utilizing creativity to achieve their dreams.
Schussler distills his principles for entrepreneurs on a budget, and also reveals the ways in which his lessons-from self-branding to developing strategic partnerships to giving recognition where recognition is due-can work in larger corporations. Just like his famous themed restaurants, Schussler's insights provide entertainment, education, and ample food for thought for all business people aspiring to their next level of success.

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews

A guide to entrepreneurial success from the founder of the Rainforest Café.

In short, snappy chapters, Schussler, CEO of Schussler Creative, Inc., offers advice culled from his career developing some of the country's leading theme-based restaurants. Readers of motivational books have heard much of it before: Be a risk-taker. Be creative. Pay attention to detail. Thank people. Be passionate. "I'm talking about PASSION," he writes. Keep trying, and "never give up—no matter what!" However familiar, the homilies are grounded in real life, as demonstrated by his many instructive and entertaining stories. A go-getter from an early age—he held more than a dozen jobs before turning 16—Schussler was in his 20s, selling TV advertising in Chicago, when he decided to go to work for himself. He began restoring old juke boxes, opened a store selling nostalgia items, went bankrupt and then used his unsold inventory to create a successful 1950s retro dance club. That's when he realized that with a good idea, anything was possible. To attract investors to his plans for a themed restaurant based on the tropical rainforest, he turned his suburban home into a misty jungle that included 40 tropical birds, two tortoises, a baboon, countless fish, waterfalls, rock outcroppings, rivers and a full-sized replica of an elephant. After urging the author to seek psychiatric help, a visiting venture capitalist toured the house, returned with his kids and eventually provided start-up money for the Rainforest Café chain. Another time, Schussler was in the Dakota Badlands, realized dinosaurs had roamed there and came up with the idea for his T-Rex family adventure restaurants. The author writes that he learned the importance of publicity when, as a young man, he donned a Superman costume, got into a wooden barrel and had two policeman friends deliver him to an interview for a sales job. "Son, you are the sickest person we've ever met," he was told. "You're hired."

A bright pep talk for aspiring entrepreneurs.

From the Publisher
"A bright pep talk for aspiring entrepreneurs."--Kirkus Reviews 
 
“[F]un, inspiring, and full of sound business advice.” --Donald J. Trump
 

“Entertaining and inspiring, a must-read for aspiring entrepreneurs!”—Harvey Mackay, Author of the #1 New York Times best-seller Swim with the Sharks without Being Eaten Alive
 
It's a Jungle in There is an easy-to-read book that imparts wisdom on the art of how to turn 'no' into 'yes'. This book should be required reading for all entrepreneurs at any stage of their career.” —Lee Iacocca, Former CEO and Chairman of the Board of Chrysler Corporation

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402762895
  • Publisher: Sterling Publishing
  • Publication date: 10/5/2010
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 521,625
  • Product dimensions: 8.24 (w) x 5.86 (h) x 0.96 (d)

Meet the Author

Steven Schussler is founder and CEO of Schussler Creative, Inc. a company that creates theatrical environments for attractions, restaurants and retail stores worldwide. He founded the Rainforest Cafe, which holds the record as one of the top-grossing restaurant concepts in the US. Schussler has also held executive positions in the television and radio broadcast industry, selling radio and television air time for networks, independent and cable television throughout the US. For more information, see schusslercreative.com.
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 4, 2010

    Loved every page of this book!

    I have been the CEO of five start-up companies and I just got done reading "It's a Jungle in There." Wow - the advice that Steven Schussler gives to entrepreneurs is worth it's weight in gold and anyone who reads this book will not only be inspired, but they will jumpstart their creativity to fast forward to real results in business! My favorite part of the book is all of the real life examples that Schussler gives...it goes to show that we all should adopt his philosophy of 'Never say Never and never give up!" I am ordering copies for friends and family as soon as possible...this book has just become my gift of choice for birthdays and holidays!
    Lori Frank

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 27, 2010

    This guy is bananas! No pun intended.

    I've been to Rain-forest Cafe's quite a bit with my nieces and nephews and would have never in my wildest dreams imagined its very peculiar inception. In the 80's the author of this book had a vision of a tropical-themed restaurant. He knew that if he was going to attempt launching it, he would need investors, so he did what any of us would do. he turned his own home into the prototype (crazy awesome!) People were walking through all the time and after a lot of rejection and even a visit from the DEA (Yes, the DEA!) he finally made it happen and thus, the Rain forest Cafe was born.

    I swear, he's like the Rocky Balboa of the business world--any time he got knocked down, he got right back up and he offers a lot of advice to anyone that's thinking of starting up their own business...but the reason to really buy this book is for all of his off-the-wall anecdotes.

    I promise, you won't be sorry--it wasn't a dry business guide, it was a total riot!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2012

    Easy Read, Interesting, and Informative

    Through reading the book I have found that the book was an interesting, easy read that goes over the recesses of what Entrepreneurship really is. If you are looking into being an entrepreneur, or are interested in what an entrepreneur does, pick up this book and read it and you will be surprised at what being an entrepreneur is really about.

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  • Posted December 10, 2010

    Great Read!

    Steven has a terrific writing style...He kept me engaged from start to finish with his quips and humor and kept me inspired from page to page with his audacity, his tenacity and his ability to succeed against the odds! Beyond the events of this career, however, is the entrepreneur's lesson plan that Steven articulates for the reader... It's the clarity of what skills and what principles are necessary to beat the odds that are my lasting takeaway. Thanks!

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  • Posted October 18, 2010

    Inspiring Business and Life Stories with Many Laughs Along the Way.

    I spent most of my Friday night reading, "It's a Jungle in There" by Steven Schussler. And yes I have a social life; the book was that enjoyable. Being someone who likes reading about business success and the personal stories of entrepreneurs, it is one of the most engaging books I have read for some time. First off, it is a simple read, flows well, and kept me engaged both from a fun factor as well as valuable lessons to implement in my life. But let me caution you, the book is about much more than business and pure profits. If you're looking for a book with heart attached to business and seeing how good people can succeed by operating from the "golden rule" this is a great read. I personally liked the chapter on philanthropy and how 100% of the author's profits are going to Smile Network Intl.

    If you are an entrepreneur or want to start your own business, you'll love the stories. In addition to laughing you're a** off, you will gain tangible principles that will directly impact your results in business and as a person. And even if you don't think of yourself as an entrepreneur, I guarantee you will find the book enjoyable, thought provoking, and encourage you to go after your dreams.

    Given the inspiring stories of perseverance, and the substance from a credible entrepreneur, I know I will use this book as a reference for my own journey and also gift it to others as they reflect and pursue their passion.

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  • Posted October 7, 2010

    This book is not just for entrepreneurs.

    Having spend 27 years in the field of Human Resources I throughly enjoyed "It's A Jungle In There." Section IV was outstanding!

    Pat_Ryan

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  • Posted October 5, 2010

    This book will inspire you...

    How many NO's would it take before you gave up? Could you with passion, jest, and salesmanship sell your idea to the same investor who has told you NO 26 times before?

    The author got Yes on the 27th try.

    First I have to admit for this book review I'm a little biased. This last week I got to tour the Schussler Creative, Inc. showroom (or the Laboratories). Beyond that great experience for this review the book completely has it's own merit.

    This book is inspiring in each and every way. As an entrepreneur it resonated with me on many different levels. Here are some key things I got from reading the book:

    Why You Should be a Mutli-tasker. yes I know the latest studies say otherwise but in a few years they will go back and say that you really should multitask. So I tend to agree with Steven on this one. He also shares how working on two things at once actually got him a deal.

    The Case for Strategic Partnerships. Great case studies throughout the book on why you should consider a strategic partnership and some general advice on why they truly are a smart move.

    Persistence. This is an overarching theme of the book and a reminder for anybody during those tough times that a little persistence will go a long way.

    Vision. I've seen first hand that Mr. Schussler is a visionary but getting the inside track from stories and life experiences really shows how you can take a vision to reality.

    Managing Perception. The author covers a topic in Chapter 23 that I believe is a hidden gem that every entrepreneur must know.

    So yes I recommend the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2010

    Creativity Drives Results!

    This book shows you what happens if you go for it and follow your dreams!
    Most people step into something part way, not Steven Schussler. This book is a quick read filled with good questions to help you connect to your passion or reignite the fire that made you go for it with your best ideas.

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  • Posted September 28, 2010

    How to Turn a No into a Yes!

    Steven Schussler's book, It's A Jungle In There, is one of the most incredible and inspiring how to beat the odds books I've ever read. His no-nonsense approach to following your dream and getting things done is remarkable. I purchased a few for my entrepreneurial brothers and friends. Great read!

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