Mark Cuban, the billionaire “Shark Tank” investor and owner of the Dallas Mavericks, is known among NBA fans for racking up fines for misconduct at Mavs games he gets a bit too excited about. But nothing, he writes in his book “How to Win at the Sport of Business,” makes him more competitive than business.
Cuban includes a checklist in his book of what it means to have “the edge,” the necessary drive to forego the confines of a comfortable job, triumph over setbacks, and build a successful company.
He draws from his own experience building companies in his 20s and 30s and investing in over 100 more, but his insights represent universal feelings.
According to Cuban:
The edge is…
- getting so jazzed about what you do, you just spent 24 hours straight working on a project and you thought only a couple hours had passed.
- knowing that you have to be the smartest guy in the room when you have your meeting and you are going to put in the effort to learn whatever you need to learn to get there.
- knowing that when the four girlfriends you have had in the last couple years asked you which was more important, them or your business, you gave the right answer.
- knowing that you can fail and learn from it, and just get back up and in the game.
- knowing that people think you’re crazy, and they are right, but you don’t care what they think.
- knowing how to blow off steam a couple times a week, just so you can refocus on business.
- knowing that you are getting to your goals and treating people right along the way, because as good as you can be, you are so focused that you need regular people around you to balance and help you.
- being able to confidently call out someone on a business issue because you have done your homework.
- recognising when you are wrong and working harder to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
- being able to drill down to identify issues and problems and solve them before anyone knows they are there.
- knowing that while everyone else is talking about nonsense like “the will to win” and how they know they can be successful, you are preparing yourself to compete so that you will be successful.
Ultimately, Cuban writes, the one thing that matters most to an entrepreneur setting out to build a business is not connections or even money, it’s the desire to go out there and crush the competition.