Mark Cuban’s ebook, How to Win at the Sport of Business: If I Can Do It, You Can Do It, is a great read for any entrepreneur looking to improve how they approach the world of business. Here are some highlights from the book:
Show your potential customers you already have customers
People like doing business with companies that have an established track record. If you have already had some success make sure your customers know about it. Show potential customers your reviews with the Better Business Bureau, TripAdvisor, Angie’s List, etc. If your business is just starting Cuban suggests offering your first few customers your goods/services at cost or with a substantial discount.
You can’t control outcomes, only effort
The most successful businesses in the world experience setbacks. Your business will probably experience erratic growth and success to begin. Don’t let frustrating periods get you down. The only thing you can control is effort. Just remember, hard work usually pays off.
Focus on goals not hours worked
Working smartly/efficiently can be more important than working long hours. Nobody will question your commitment to your work if you can save time by automating a process that would usually take days to complete by manual entry into a process that can be completed by a computer in a few minutes. Said another way, don’t beat your head against a wall unless you have to.
Focus on maintaining relationships
Most businesses models are not focused on completing individual transactions with customers. If you squeeze the last few pennies out of deal but alienate the customer so they never want to business with again, what did you really gain? It is also worth noting that dissatisfied customers are highly unlikely to refer others to do business with you.
Don’t worry about finding outside investors
Cuban says it might be tempting to find well known investors to get involved with your company. Mark Cuban argues that the most important investment you can make in your business is your effort. He points to Dell, Apple and Microsoft, companies that only took on outside investors when they had already had considerable success.
It doesn’t matter how many times you’ve failed
In the word of Cuban: “The beauty of success, whether it’s finding the girl of your dreams, the right job or financial success, is that it doesn’t matter how many times you have failed, you only have to be right once…then everyone can tell you how lucky you are.”
Nobody ever became successful by waking up in the morning and saying; “I’m not sure if I have what it takes to do this.” Don’t dwell on mistakes you made yesterday. Worry about making the right decision today. You won’t help the decision making process by constantly questioning your own ability or thinking you are bound for failure.
No matter what kind of venture you are planning or have actually launched, Mark Cuban’s wisdom can help improve how you approach the world of business. And life, as well!