“Shut Up and Listen! Hard Business Truths That Will Help You Succeed” by Tilman Fertitta, HarperCollins, 167 pages

Tilman Fertitta, Galveston’s native son, decided to capture another commercial space in the world of publishing with his new book titled, “Shut Up and Listen!” published by HarperCollins.

His book is a wake-up call and reminder for all of us that the America Dream is still possible. The title of the book reveals the personality of the man who has amassed a billion dollar fortune.

Fertitta shared his wisdom, or what he has labeled “Tilmanisms” with a variety of helpful sayings such as never put your lifestyle ahead of the growth of your company; to why is it so easy to say no when you can say yes; to by anticipating change, you don’t just change with the times-you change the times themselves.

Fertitta has been changing the times and breaking down barriers his entire career to discover rich and fertile soil in all his business dealings from his restaurants, hotel/casinos to his newest acquisition the Houston Rockets. In fact, a number of the island’s finest restaurants are in his portfolio such as Landry’s, The Steakhouse at The San Luis and Willie G’s.

When a billionaire speaks it would be worth your time to listen. In the book, Fertitta described himself as a self-made man from humble beginnings and with the persistence of a raging bull.

His business philosophy is sound and sensibly written in a language that speaks to anyone who wants to get to the higher levels in their business life. He shares five themes in the book from incorporating hospitality on all levels of your business, to developing into a leader, to his unique 95/5 formula.

Fertitta redefines Pareto 80/20 principle, which states 80 percent of your results were derived from 20 percent of your efforts. Fertitta’s formula will educate you that most people do 95 percent of things right in business, yet it’s the 5 percent that can tip the scales to failure or to success.

He shared some of his idiosyncrasies, which revealed his pursuit for perfection in himself and his people.

He doesn’t sugarcoat his words with allegories or elegant language, rather he wrote a hard hitting, no nonsense and compelling approach for the ordinary man or woman to become extraordinary and to win at the game of life.

He does open up his operations to show you real life examples of his methodologies. When you learn the secret to his success, then you will discover your own numbers, you will rediscover your mission/operation, you will turbo-charge your growth and embrace the consistency of change for your business.

Fertitta shares with the world one of life’s greatest truths, that the true joy is in the journey and not the destination. You will want to give “Shut Up and Listen!” a permanent place in your personal library, but more importantly, to put his strategies to work for you and your business.

James Rankin lives in Galveston.

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