I recently took a trip to Nashville for a client meeting. I always like to take a book with me for the flight, and this time, I read “Relentless” by Tim Grover.
A lot of people aren’t fans of Tim Grover because he’s extremely relentless when it comes to winning, and he won’t stop until he achieves his goals. He’s trained some of the most amazing athletes — Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and Dwayne Wade to name a few. His clients were all relentless in their desire to win, and he was relentless in the way he trained them mentally and physically.
Before my Nashville trip, I was listening to an episode of Rachel Hollis’s podcast where she interviewed Tim Grover. He fascinated me with his stories, and I realized he had a lot of the same beliefs I do about work ethic and removing the emotion from work to get results. Rachel mentioned that his book is perfect for Enneagram Type 3’s, so of course, I got on Amazon and immediately ordered it.
Once I started reading “Relentless,” I couldn’t put it down. There were so many concepts and stories that I related to in my own life and in my pursuit to win in business. I often find myself feeling frustrated with clients who say they have massive goals for their business but aren’t actually willing to put in the work to get there. Grover tells his clients:
“Let me do all the thinking for both of us. I’m making your life easier by doing all the homework and giving you the answers to the test. Just show up, work hard and listen. That’s your part of the deal. Do the work.”
A lightbulb went off for me, as this is the same ethos I have when approaching my clients. I will give them the game plan to follow, all they need to do is put in the hard work.
In the book, Grover lays out a helpful structure he uses to categorize his clients:
- The Cooler – He thinks about what he’s supposed to think about, but is usually all talk.
- The Closer – He thinks, analyzes and eventually acts.
- The Cleaner – He doesn’t think at all, he just knows.
Grover uses the term Cleaner to describe Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant. A cleaner is unemotional — he gets in the zone and does whatever it takes to win. He tells many stories about MJ and Kobe winning a championship and turning around early the next morning to train and get better while everyone else is celebrating. They were the best players in the league, yet they always believed they could be better and achieve more.
My Nashville client is truly relentless. He’s started two tech companies, sold them both, and is now on his third tech company. He and I had an investor pitch where we were asking for $1 million from some heavy hitters he was introduced to in the industry. My client had already invested hundreds of thousands of dollars of his own money into this company, but he needed more to get it off the ground. This money came from selling his father’s farm after he passed away. It was meant to be his retirement money, but instead, he took a risk and invested it into his company. He had so much skin in the game, but he was relentless in his pursuit to make his dream come true. That’s what a Cleaner really does — late nights, early mornings, they stop at nothing until they reach their goal.
One of my favorite quotes from the book is:
“The decision you make on Monday will still be waiting for you on Tuesday, and by then two new decisions will have to be dealt with, and if you still don’t make those decisions, you’ll have three more on Wednesday. Pretty soon, you’re so overwhelmed by everything you still haven’t dealt with that you become completely paralyzed and can’t do anything!”
I see people do this all the time. They’re paralyzed out of fear of making a mistake and don’t act. Meanwhile, their competitor is acting, making mistakes and correcting them along the way; therefore, passing you by. Moral of the story: Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Even if you do make the wrong choice, you can act and pivot if you need to. Overanalyzing every decision will paralyze you. The book goes on to explain that you can apply this philosophy to any aspect of your life.
Are you like a Cooler (all talk but no game), a Closer (strategically think, act and get results) or a Cleaner (not overthinking anything, going off your gut with confidence to get the job done)? I believe successful entrepreneurs can be Closers or Cleaners.
If you’re looking for some straight talk, Grover can definitely provide that for you in “Relentless.” If you’re looking for motivation, this isn’t the book for you. Grover expects you to already be motivated and won’t tolerate those who need to be motivated. In other words: He’s got no time for Coolers.