Ali Jafarian
Ali Jafarian

If you don’t know who Mark Cuban is you’ve been living under a rock… or, you don’t really care about business!

Either way, I’ve been a long time fan of Mark Cuban. He’s arguably one of the most successful entrepreneurs of our time. He’s also a lot of fun to watch on Shark Tank! I recently ready his book – How to Win at the Sport of Business. Here are some thoughts and key takeaways for those of you who are too lazy to read it 🙂

Buisness is a Game

I never really thought about business from this angle… but Mark is right – business is just a big game! The rules are slightly different than sports or other “games,” but the basic game fundamentals still apply:

  • There are lots of teams (businesses)
  • We’re all competing for victory (growth)
  • There are wins and losses (acquisitions and bankruptcy)

However, unlike sports there are less definition around rules of the game. In other words, the business world is wide open for you to get in there and show what you’ve got. You can take over an industry or get crushed and kicked out of business. There will always be someone else trying to beat you at this game – i.e. your competitors. So you’ve gotta stay sharp and hungry if you want to win, just like sports.

Find What You Love

This can often be easier said than done, but the point is to search for that thing [or things] in business that you can become passionate about. For Mark, it was technology. He found it after doing a dozen other jobs that he disliked or got fired from. He continually told himself that those other jobs were a means to an end… a stepping stone until he found something he loved.

Once you find what you love time starts to fly, and work becomes less like work. Mark explained how he’d lose track of time and often work through the nights. You know you’re doing something you’re passionate about when you can’t put it down. Like a good book – you always want more.

Put the Time In

Mark’s competitive advantage early in his career wasn’t some special secret. He simply put more time into learning the technology he sold than his competitors. He educated himself and became an expert.

That same concept applies to any business – put the time in and you’ll find success. Stop trying to take the easy way out or look for shortcuts… they will only yield short term success at best.

That’s what most people don’t realize about successful entrepreneurs. It’s often assumed that they’re lucky or blessed with something special. When in reality they just work harder and put more time in. They grind it out 24/7 while most people do “normal” things.

Never Stop Learning

This is the most important part of his book.

If there’s anything Mark preaches consistently it’s that we’re always learning. From the moment you start college to the minute you leave your current job, you should always be learning (ABL – I just made that up). Everything in business is a lesson, from the good to the bad. The smartest people in business realize this and embrace every opportunity to learn, while throwing away wasted time that doesn’t yield learning.

Those of us with the most knowledge will rise faster and eventually “win.” It’s that simple.

Those are just a few of the great points he talks about. I encourage you to read the entire book. It’s a great [and fast] read for anyone, from interns to CEOs.

Ali Jafarian

Ali is a father, husband and serial entrepreneur with a deep drive to create. He writes, records, codes and builds things to inspire the artist in all of us.

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