Why You Should Start A Business Today | Mark Cuban on 20VC with Harry Stebbings

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Key Takeaways

  • “Right now and going forward, whatever time it takes to get through the other side, it’s going to be the best time in the history of mankind to ever start a business because there are no rules. Everything is open for negotiation.”Mark Cuban
    • If you’ve been fired or furloughed, this is the best time to start your business
      • “Now’s the time to do it”
  • Mark views Silicon Valley investors as Old Hollywood. In Old Hollywood, everyone was trying to be an actor; In Silicon Valley, everyone is trying to be an investor.
  • “Sales cures all. There’s never been a company in the history of companies that’s ever succeeded without sales.” Mark Cuban
    • “If the CEO doesn’t believe their product enough to sell it, then nobody else is either”
  • “You’re never going to accelerate unless you delegate”Mark Cuban
  • “Hire slow and fire fast” Mark Cuban

Intro

  •  Mark Cuban (@mcuban) is the owner of the Dallas Mavericks and investor on the TV show Shark Tank  
  • Host: Harry Stebbings (@HarryStebbings)

Books Mentioned

  •  Mark is currently reading:
    • Rebooting AI by Gary Marcus
      • This book is making Mark rethink the benefits and dangers of AI
    • Healthy Buildings by Joseph G. Allen             
      • This book talks about air pollution in offices and all the health impacts being indoors can have on employees     

Mark’s Background

  • Mark’s first job in tech was selling PC software
    • From there, he taught himself how to program
      • He was eventually fired from that job, so he started his own company called MicroSolutions
        • He sold that company to H&R Block
          • After that, he started a streaming company called Broadcast.com
            • Sometime after that, he bought an NBA team
  • When Mark sold his first company, he bought a lifetime pass airline ticket and just traveled the world
  • Mark went from being broke and living with 6 guys in an apartment to becoming a billionaire

Thoughts on Business

  • Mark doesn’t like to take risks, but he’s okay with it as long as he’s done his homework
    • “I wasn’t opposed to risk if I really did my homework and that’s the same now” – Mark Cuban
  • When should you quit your company?
    • When you run out of money or time
      • “The greatest companies rarely have had to raise money” – Mark Cuban
      • The best products often sell themselves, so if you can’t sell it, it’s likely people don’t want it
  • “Right now and going forward, whatever time it takes to get through the other side, it’s going to be the best time in the history of mankind to ever start a business because there are no rules. Everything is open for negotiation.”Mark Cuban
    • If you’ve been fired or furloughed, this is the best time to start your business
      • “Now’s the time to do it”
  • Telemedicine, technology, artificial intelligence, robotics, and many more industries will experience huge growth in the near future

Investing & Selling Advice

  • When investing in a company, Mark prefers to make money from its cash flow rather than an exit or acquisition play
    • “An exit, I can’t control. Cash flow and profitability, I can work with the entrepreneur and have some level of control” – Mark Cuban
  • Mark views Silicon Valley investors as Old Hollywood. In Old Hollywood, everyone was trying to be an actor; In Silicon Valley, everyone is trying to be an investor.
    • There’s so much capital and investors right now, that they’re throwing money at almost everything
  • As an entrepreneur, you have to be authentic and self-aware of your shortcomings
    • Don’t try to fake it till you make it
      • “Every single fake it till you make it entrepreneur who fooled me has failed” – Mark Cuban
  • “Sales cures all. There’s never been a company in the history of companies that’s ever succeeded without sales.” Mark Cuban
    • “If the CEO doesn’t believe their product enough to sell it, then nobody else is either”
  • Price your product in relation to the value it provides customers
    • You can always price it higher and then work your way down if needed

Business Advice

  • Have a vision for your organization and figure out how to align people on it
    • Then you have to find managers you can trust
      • Then you can accelerate things because you can trust your managers to delegate tasks
        • “You’re never going to accelerate unless you delegate”Mark Cuban
  • “Hire slow and fire fast” Mark Cuban
  • If you’re an employee, you need to find a way to get better at your weakness
  • If you’re an entrepreneur, you need to double down on your strengths and find a partner that compensates for your weaknesses
20VC with Harry Stebbings : , , , ,
Notes By Alex Wiec

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