What I appreciate about our opportunities in life is that we are almost always just one step away changing our life or reaching our potential. In sports it can be that one play that changes everything. In relationships it can be that serendipitous moment where your path crosses someone else's that changes your life forever. In business it can be that one sale or that one prospect that opens the floodgate of future business. When I was in the insurance business, we always told new agents that at the end of the day when you want to wrap up and head home for the day, just go see one more prospect. It's a mentality that every person you meet has the potential to change everything for you. It makes me think of Mark Cuban who, while in college, taught disco lessons to sorority girls for $25 per hour. He saved up $15k and then opened a local bar in his college town before he graduated. After moving to Texas and becoming a software salesman, he starts a tech company and then eventually sells it for $6 million. Instead of becoming complacent, he starts a new company that eventually sells for $6 billion to Yahoo. It's incredible to think that one sale to Yahoo and he jumps from being worth a few million to a few billion overnight. Now Mark Cuban is an American billionaire entrepreneur, television personality (most well known for being one of the sharks on SharkTank, media proprietor, and investor, whose net worth is an estimated $4.3 billion, according to Forbes and ranked #179 on the 2019 Forbes 400 list. Mark Cuban is a named inventor of 11 patent families and 23 distinct patent publications for his inventions as well as the owner of the Dallas Mavericks (which has doubled in value since he bought it). He is also a very savvy domain investor and paid $300k for democracy.com within the last year. Here are 10 pieces of advice he has on what it takes to be successful at life:
Books — If you’re not curious, you’re falling behind. You have to read and learn. Read as much as you can.
Effort — It’s the one thing in life you have control of. There’s always going to be someone else working a little harder, which can be a motivation.
Business — Find something you love to do, be great at it, and sell it. Sales cures all. There’s never been a business that hasn’t succeeded without sales. Know more about business than anyone else in the world.
Timing — The best time to start a business is when you don’t have anything. Because this is when you have nothing to lose. There’s no downside.
Pitching — The best business pitch Mark heard on Shark Tank was Simple Sugars. Watch it here.
Destiny — The type of person you are points to the things you’re good at. When you find something you’re better at than most, go for it. But don’t be afraid to experiment, because sometimes you don’t know yet.
Passion — Don’t follow your passion, follow your efforts. Curiosity will drive you, especially if you’re young.
Failure — No one counts your mistakes. You just have to be right one time to start living large.
Investing — First things first, pay off your credit cards. Next, save up 6 months worth of income for a rainy day. Finally, be a smart shopper. Mark buys a year of supplies, like toothpaste and razor blades, in advance to take advantage of the bulk discount.
Motivation — When Mark was broke, he would drive past the luxury houses and wonder, "What do I need to do to live in a house like this?"
So this week I encourage you to focus on that next one thing that you can influence this week that can make the difference in enriching your life either personally or professionally.