A Shark’s Tips for Startups
from INC.com Magazine 24 April 15 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
Mark Cuban, Shark Tank. As one of the most well-known sharks, he didn’t get where he is with luck alone. However, just like any other entrepreneur & investor, he had plenty of stumbles along the way. Just imagine how successful Mark would be, if had he been able to give his younger self advice. The next best thing is giving other young entrepreneurs advice. Are you willing to take the advice Mark has to offer? If so, you can streamline your processes and maybe even surpass his success one day. Here are 10 tips Mark would have given to his younger self that you can re-purpose for your own goal setting:
1. Vision. “Stay focused, believe in yourself & trust your own ability & judgment,” says Mark. There will always come times when you doubt yourself, but they should be few and far between. Having a bit of “tunnel” vision can be very helpful to entrepreneurs as long as you’re looking down the right tunnel.
2. Preparation. “If you’re prepared and you know what it takes, it’s not a risk. You just have to figure out how to get there. There is always a way to get there.” Of course, that doesn’t mean there won’t be plenty of obstacles. Unfortunately, too many people give up too soon. It’s the figuring out how to get there, that separates true Entrepreneurs for Wanto-preneurs.
3. Wealth. “Being rich is a good thing. Not just in the obvious sense of benefitting you and your family, but in the broader sense. Profits are not a zero sum game. The more you make, the more of a financial impact you have and the more choices you have.” There is no shame in wealth or wanting to be wealthy, but make sure you look beyond the apparent plusses of it.
4. Tech vs. Business. “There’s way too much hype on the technologies and not enough attention on the real businesses behind them.” Pay more attention to the businesses and the people, and you’ll bypass a lot of the white noise the products make. You need both tech & business for a success story.
5. Diligence. “Work harder & smarter than most people in the businesses,” says Mark. It sounds obvious, but so many people want to take short cuts. If you do more, you get more. It’s actually a pretty simple equation.
6. Improvements. “I continuously look for ways to improve all of my companies. I’m always selling my new ideas to my people & customers. Always.” There is no such thing as an entrepreneur who is not also a great salesperson. There is no such thing as a perfect company. Keep moving up & onward.
7. Sweat Equity, is the most valuable equity there is. Know your business and industry better than anyone else in the world. Love what you do or don’t do it.” This is the kind of sage advice you’d expect from someone a little “softer” than Mark. However, if he’s pushing passion projects, you know it’s a winning strategy.
8. Customer Service. “Treat your customers like they own you. Because they do.” You won’t have a business without customers–period. No matter how much success you enjoy, without good customer service, you won’t reach your top potential.
9. Professional Relationships. “You can accomplish much, much more with direct relationships than by using an intermediary. This is where those customer service skills come into play again. Networking and relationships are the backbone of an entrepreneur’s success.
10. Good Cash Flow. “If you’ve got $25,000, $50,000, $100,000, you’re better off paying off any Debt you have, because Interest Rates are often a killer.” Debt can destroy a business. Get in the clear before you break out. That cash you keep in the bank can be the difference between staying alive as a small business or not.”
11. Role Model. Since hindsight is 20/20, why not rely on the “laser-focused” perspective of someone who’s been there, done that? There is no reason to re-invent the wheel, especially in the realm of entrepreneurship. Follow these principle and let Mark, the shark, show you the way to avoid a lot of obstacles & failure.
Comments: Is there anything you can add to this?