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Winning Every Day: The Game Plan for Success
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on June 30, 2003
Lou Holtz, currently the head football coach at the University of South Carolina, has written one of the best, and most enjoyable leadership books I have ever read. His game plan for success was largely told through his gridiron experiences, but this plan is about much more than just football-it is a proven, common-sense guide for succeeding in the game of life.

What makes Holtz's life and leadership insights so compelling and believable are his dynamic life experiences and his incredible list of accomplishments: parents were divorced; fiance' broke off their engagement, but they later married and remain so after 40 years; only coach to lead 4 different programs to top-20 finishes and 6 different programs to bowl games (William and Mary, N.C. State, Arkansas, Minnesota, Notre Dame, South Carolina); 23 of 32 college teams he coached have received bowl bids, with 18 top-25 finishes, 8 top-10 finishes, and one undefeated national championship; 3rd winningest active coach and 7th place all-time with 243 victories; wife's heroic battle with throat cancer; fired or let go as assistant coach more than once; polled as the best motivational speaker in the country two years in a row, and his motivational video "Do Right!" is the all-time best-seller; guest speaker at most Fortune 500 companies; and was invited to the Oval Office by four different presidents.

Holtz's game plan consists of ten steps. Each step is explored in detail in its own chapter. The colorful, real-world stories and humorous anecdotes Holtz used to present the steps' lessons perfectly complemented his conversational writing style. The final chapter is considered the "end-zone" of success-where you can be if you have the courage, desire, and character to apply the lessons described within the plan's steps.

The book is jammed full of common-sense, spiritual, philosophical, and motivational life and leadership perspectives. The most memorable passages for me as a father, leader, and follower were Holtz's thoughts about discipline:
"For me, a disciplinarian is someone who requires that people understand the consequences of their decisions. You use discipline to reinforce choices. Our athletes and my children knew that if they chose to misbehave, they were also choosing to pay the consequences...In each case, I never punished anyone; the offenders chose the punishment themselves by their actions."

He illustrated his commitment to being a disciplinarian by describing the circumstances that led to him suspending his top three Arkansas players before the 1977 Orange Bowl (against Oklahoma), and to suspending two of his best players before his top-ranked Notre Dame team played the second-ranked University of Southern California in 1988:
"[They] recklessly violated our Do Right rule, which governs personal conduct...These were not bad guys; they simply made a bad decision...I didn't want the keys to our offense to miss our biggest game of the year, but when they decided to break our rules, they also decided to miss the game. Now I had to support that choice."

Holtz is a master motivator and a proven true winner in football and life. My highest recommendation for this book is best captured by Holtz himself when he wrote, "As you know, the only things that will change you from where you are today to where you want to be five years from now are the books you read and the people you meet." I hope I someday get a chance to meet Lou Holtz and thank him for his outstanding book on life and leadership.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on January 30, 2001
Lou Holtz gives you motivation tips and how to succeed in life. He breaks it down into direct on clear-cut. The power of your attitude, tackling adversity, sense of purpose, your friends, being the best you can be, competing, taking care of yourself, trust, committed to your obligations, and care for others are all phases of the book takes you through. The goal of this book is to make you feel that Lou Holtz is sitting in front of you discussing all issues in a humorous way.
Winning Every Day": The Game Plan for Success is a book for everybody that wants to become a winner in every situation that life throws at you. It is direct, concise, clear-cut, humorous, wise, and precise in its recommendations for how to win every day. The book will make you a winner. All you have to do is spend two hours on reading the book. It's funny and a great book to read if you want to get on track or continue staying on track.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
I happened to notice this book one day when I took my daughter to the library. A friend of mine is a personal acquaintance of Lou's so I decided to see what 'Ol Lou is all about for myself.

This is a book of (mostly humorous) stories that makes it a fun, easy read. At the same time, each story has powerful success principles and truths embedded within.

If you want to see powerful leadership in action, this is a great book.

If you want to get more from your interactions and relationships with people in every area of your life, this is a great book.

If you find yourself doubting your abilities and potential, this is a great book.

If you want to be able to learn from someone who started out as a nobody with nothing and ended up as somebody who had something, this is a great book.

If you weren't fortunate enough to have a parent or adult-figure who taught you how to win at the game of life, then I heartily recommend this book to help fill in that void.

If you don't see yourself in the preceding statements, or, if you have read all the success books and you are looking for something brand-new that you have never heard of before, then this probably isn't the book for you.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on November 3, 1999
As a long time Notre Dame fan and Lou Holtz supporter, I jumped at the chance to read his book. It had a message to send and I think that it did that very well. It didn't do it in just any way however. He used examples from previous experiences both on and off the field to send his message in a much more understandable and entertaining way. This book lived up to all of the expectations that I had for it and even surprised me with its humor. Holtz brings his past experinces back to life in a hilarious way throughout the book. He also includes comments on issues that I totally agree with. For anyone looking for motivation, sucess, or just a good laugh, this book is a must read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 1999
I am a guy who doesn't read as much as I should but I couldn't put this book down. His stories are very motivating and delightful. I have begun to use the Coaches ideas in my professional and personal life. I have established a WIN attitude and I can't stop writing goals for myself. Thank You Coach for your words and enlightening approach to life. I am a big fan of Notre Dame and you but I guess I'll have to stock up on my Gamecocks gear now ! Good Luck and God Bless Lou Holtz and his family.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 2000
We have used Coach Holtz's videos in our corporate training programs for years, and we have found his book to be equally inspiring. Values-based management is a key to Coach Holz's success, and it should be a part of everyone's training program and personal motivational library.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on June 13, 2000
This is an excellent book. It belongs right next to Harvey Mackay's and Ken Blanchard's works. Great inspiration. However I gave it only 4 stars for ... you guessed it ... gramar. When you write a good book, make sure you read it before it goes to print.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 19, 1998
In an entertaining, readable, yet challenging style, the ex-Notre Dame football head coach teaches, cajoles, and persuades you into leading a better life.
Notre Dame fans will especially appreciate his consistent use of examples from players and coaches throughout his 1986-1997 tenure at the school. He also sprinkles examples not from his life, as well as from earlier coaching stints. His treatment of Woody Hayes is especially interesting, and endearing.
And in typical Lou fashion, he mangles a few names, and misspells others! Craig Hentrich becomes Hendricks; Charles Woodson's first name is wrong. These few mistakes make the book endearing, and prove it authentic!
If you undertake a cost-benefit analysis on time spent vs. reward returned, your time spent with this book is well worth it. The few hours spent absorbing Lou's stories and wisdom will bear fruit manyfold over a lifetime. Motivating, yes. But more importantly, Lou gives normative advice on how to become a better person. His honesty as to his own failings gives his advice even more credibility.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on August 17, 1999
lou holtz gives the impression that he never stops learning even after u would expect that he knows it all. Mainly he teaches how to be inspired & focused as u achieve your goals etc. He gives many examples of players & coaches & everyday people who went from nowhere to somewhere & turned things around when life appeared dismal. The most impressive aspect, for me, is that he has a knack for turning adversity & tuff situations into an advantage. Reading this book will at the very least give you improved perspective
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Lou Holtz boils his life's wisdom down to ten teachable steps:

1. Power of Attitude
2. Tackle Adversity
3. Have a Sense of Purpose
4. Make Sacrifice Your Ally
5. Adapt or Die
6. Chase Your Dreams
7. Nurture Your Self-Image
8. Foster Trust with Others
9. Commit to Excellence
10. Handle Others with Care

Each of these steps become a chapter of his book, which he illustrates by lessons from life and the gridiron. Holtz's language is conversational, even parental. This tone, however, also underlies a steely determination and intensity. I try to read this book at least once per year, and it is for me the single most beneficial self-help book I have ever read.
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