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7 Practical Lessons from the Billionaire Mark Cuban

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 Every tycoon in the business world knows Mark Cuban; a man who knows what hard earned victory tastes like, and how to get there. The American businessman, investor and proprietor of the Dallas Mavericks basketball team among other things, took note of early mistakes by other businessmen, as well as his own experiences, to build his empire.

In his recently written e-book “How to Win at the Sport of Business” he sheds light on incidents which occurred in his life and the practical knowledge he gained from them, paving his way to the title of “super entrepreneur” and a net worth of over $2 billion. Here are 7 valuable practical lessons from the man himself:

1. Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion:

Regardless of getting a fair amount of stick throughout his life for speaking first and thinking later, Cuban believes that it is essential to express your opinion regardless of the reactions it incurs, be it negative or positive. This reaction is priceless in acknowledging one’s situation and allows informed direction for the next step. Quoted he says:

“In the past people used to tell me to shut up a bit. But what I believe is to put out your opinion and let everyone else react. If I’m wrong I’m wrong. People are afraid to put out their opinions and get push back.”

2. Effort is the key manipulator of success:

Cuban grew up with an inborn instinct to survive; be it through odd jobs like bartending or by selling software. However he possessed the desire to not give in and pushed through all odds by working harder to reach his goals. He stated that a major contributor to his success was his effort; just like every basketball game (or sport for that matter), the results depend upon how much you pushed yourself to get there. Even when he had reached the brink of success, he still sought out ways for improvement and committed himself to his goals. Quoted he says:

“I say it to Maverick players and I say it to everybody in business, The one thing in life you can control is your effort. If you are willing to put in the effort to start the business and you are willing to deal with the challenges and the fact you might starve or live like a student . . . If you are willing to fight through those via effort and brain power, anything is possible. There is no reason it can’t be you.”

In the world of business, there are various factors beyond our control. However, that should not stop us in maximizing the efficiency in something that we can control and that is the amount of effort we put in. We should strive to be an expert at whatever we do, because this is a key lacking in most individuals.

3. Envision the results you seek:

Growing up, Cuban struggled to reach his dreams of running his own business. He would promise himself every day that he would get there; and focused on what he would achieve at the end of the road. After losing his job as a salesman, he took the initiative to start his own software company. Named MicroSolutions, the company ultimately went on to be sold at a whopping $6 million in 1990. Quoted he says:

“When I got to Dallas, I was struggling – sleeping on the floor with six guys in a three-bedroom apartment. I used to drive around, look at the big houses, and imagine what it would be like to live there and use that as motivation.”
Envisioning the results of your goals is a great motivator in getting you there.

4. If you can sell it; you can achieve it:

Another valuable advice Cuban offers is that if you are capable of connecting to people and serving their needs; there is no reason why you would not get yes as an answer. He encourages persistence and says that being able to deal with dissent brings you closer to approval. Quoted regarded buyers, he says:

“You are not trying to convince them of anything, you’re trying to show them how you are going to make their lives easier . . . There are no favors involved. It’s a win-win for everybody.”

5. Experience is invaluable in the long run:

Cuban worked a variety of odd jobs to pay for his education. He believes that even if the job or his position was not what he desired, he would rationalize it with the experience earned and its benefits in the long run. The road to success is a long one filled with potholes; you should not be demoralized if you still have a long way to go and instead take every step as another lesson that would aid you in your future triumphs. Quoted he says:

“In every job, I would justify it in my mind, whether I loved it or hated it, that I was getting paid to learn and every experience would be of value when I figured out what I wanted to do when I grew up.”

6. Know the most regarding your business:

An important attitude Cuban encourages to adapt to any entrepreneur is to know everything regarding his or her work; in fact, know more than anyone else. He states that knowledge is power and having complete mastery of one’s company or industry is key to a fruitful business. He says:

“Know your business and industry better than anyone else in the world.”

7. Be different:

Finally, something Cuban cannot emphasize more is the need to be unique in whatever you do and stand out in your initiatives. Being mainstream does not aid in propagating a strong business and choosing to develop a new idea reaps more benefits than utilizing an existing one. Quoted he says:

“When you’ve got 10,000 people trying to do the same thing, why would you want to be number 10,001?”

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