What can you buy for $.53 cents?  The following are some options for you:

  1. 30 minutes of downtown parking
  2. 1/2 of a Redbox rental
  3. ½ of an iTune
  4. 1/5 of a gallon of gasoline
  5. Today’s local small town newspaper
  6. 2 bags of Top Ramen
  7. Something from a gumball machine

What if I told you I got personal coaching from Roy Williams, the three-time national champion head basketball coach of the North Carolina Tar Heels for only .53 cents?  What if I told his coaching included his philosophy on recruiting talent, team building, overcoming adversity, the power of hard work, how to construct a staff, decision-making, career advice, what he learned from Coach Dean Smith, money management, dealing with superstars, working with the media, organizing practices, interacting with United States presidents, parenting, marriage and how to win multiple championships?  Well, he did.  Let me tell you the story.

Recently, I went into my favorite used book store to pass some time.  I wasn’t planning on buying anything as I already had a stack of books I needed to read.  Located in the sports section was a stack of Coach Williams’s book Hard Work: A Life On And Off The Court.  The cost was only .50 cents.  I thought, “Well, I admire Coach Williams but I’m not a huge fan.  I haven’t heard of this book but my heavens, surely I can get .50 cents of value from a book written by a three-time national champion and nine-time Final Four coach.”

So I laid down a dollar, got .47 cents of change back and purchased the book.  I am so glad I did!  This book was outstanding.  The following are just 10 of the leadership quotes and lessons provided by Coach Williams I gleaned from the book:

  1. “In every close game somebody’s going to give in and let’s not let it be us.”
  2. “You have to call most prospects 10 times for every time they answer the phone.”
  3. “I had a legal pad and a pencil and I wrote down every drill and diagrammed the alignment of the players.  I wrote down whatever Coach Smith said.  Whatever Coach (Bill) Guthridge said.  I wrote down what time each drill began and how long it took.  I was writing out my own practice plan.” – Williams watching UMC practice each day while he was just a freshman.
  4. “I don’t know many people who paid a higher price (than I did) to get started.”  ***note*** and let me say when you read the book, Coach Williams and his wife paid a HIGH price.
  5. “Kevin Pritchard’s dad was waiting for the bus.  He told Kevin, ‘Son, you’ve got to play your rear end off today because there are 14 NBA scouts here.’  He wasn’t as interested in our team winning as he was in how his son was being looked at by the pros.”
  6. On one of reasons he left Kansas to coach UNC – “Bob Frederick had retired as the Kansas athletic director in 2001 and was replaced by Al Bohl.  Al and I were like oil and water.  We just did not mix.  I didn’t think he ever had a grasp of what Kansas basketball really meant to people, and I never felt he was totally sincere with me.  I never felt like he was in my corner.  I think he felt threatened by me and saw our relationship as a power struggle.”
  7. “Recruiting means everything.  I know that Roy Williams is only as good as the players I can put out on the court.”
  8. “That’s the one thing I think about when I’m coaching: everybody should understand what they can and cannot do.”
  9. “Coaching is all about me getting my five guys to do what I want them to do better than you can get your five guys to do what you want them to do.”
  10. “Hard work doesn’t guarantee success, but without it you have no chance.  I always want people to know that nobody’s going to outwork me.  I may screw up.  I may make a bad substitution.  I may call a bad play.  But there’s no way that any other coach can outwork me.  And that’s what motivates me every single day.”

If I were to contact Coach Williams and schedule four hours of personal coaching, I would have to write a four-or-five figure check to Coach Williams, or the University of North Carolina, or Coach Williams’s favorite charity.  Corporations do things like this all the time.  This is because of how valuable his time and insights are.

OR….. I could buy his book for .53 cents and get all the same information.  (See the cost on the left!)

There is absolutely no better value than books written by great leaders.  It is almost laughable.  Leaders are absolutely crazy if they are not reading books written by other great leaders.  You can find solutions to almost any problem you face for a minimal cost.  Leaders are readers and if you aren’t reading, I can’t help you.  No one can.

To get your copy of Hard Work: A Life On And Off The Courtclick HERE.  BTW, I am now a HUGE fan of Coach Williams after reading his story.  For more great books, check out The Top 18 Books Christian Leaders Need To Read In 2018

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