Making Ideas Happen by Scott Belsky – Book Review

I’ve always been pretty productive, but also always had the problem of not finishing many projects I start. I’ve developed systems to counter this, but never really knew why it happens.

Having loads of unfinished projects is a very common problem and people are constantly hitting me up about it as well.

Making Ideas Happen


I recently read this bestseller book by Scott Belsky called “Making Ideas Happen”… And I am not exaggerating when I say it was a complete revelation for me.
Made me realize lots of things, so I wanted to share  it with you quickly.
The book succeeds in breaking down the problem of not finishing your projects and shows the path to, well, making ideas happen.

Making Ideas Happen

The full name of the book is “Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality”.

Belsky has spent lots of time interviewing and observing many of the most productive and successful creative professionals in the world. He discovered they have a lot of things in common.


(I should also mention Belsky has achieved a great deal on his own right – founding Behance being just one example).

His conclusion is that implementing your ideas succesfully is very much a skill that can be learned. And in this book he shows you the proven practices of how to build the capacity to make your ideas into reality.

This guy really knows what he’s talking about.

Belsky breaks the creative process down into these areas:

“(The Idea) + Organization and Execution + Forces of Community + Leadership Capability”

The book is structured according to his formula.


Better productivity

After reading this book I’m learning to avoid the mistakes I used to make, and making things happen at an increasing rate. I can really understand many of the problems I’ve had that used to cause a lot of projects getting stalled. Productivity is not about working harder, but working smarter.

That kind of information is just invaluable to me.

It almost feels like I’ve been throwing away money and time all these years. I would even go as far as saying this book is the single most beneficial book I’ve ever read so far, and that is why I wanted to share it with you.

The book is full of timeless information. And it applies for any kind of creative work. Anyone who has passion for what they’re doing – wether an architect, music producer or a hockey coach… All project based work flows around the same principles. In the end, as Belsky puts it… Everything in life can be approached as a project.

Making Ideas Happen currently sells for 12.97 USD (or 6.99 GBP) in Amazon. Kindle edition is even cheaper (myself I love reading real books though).

It’s a steal and I can’t recommend it enough. Especially if you’re like me and want to be able to finish more of what you start.

Here are the links to Amazon US and UK respectively. You will find more information and excerpts of the content there.

Amazon US: Making Ideas Happen

Amazon UK: Making Ideas Happen

Happy reading and let me know what you think!

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  • fooder

    65 pages in and my life is already completely changed. Thank you so much for the recommendation.

    • Ilpo Kärkkäinen

      You’re welcome. I know! Such a great book. You just got to remember to keep building those things into habits. Don’t let yourself fall back after the dust has settled.

  • Mike Thomas

    I have just read this book after reading your review, I totally agree there is some great stuff in there that could be applied to everything that you do, music and life wise. I particularly liked the section on managing urgent and important work. Nice one for pointing it out, cheers Mike