Image by Kari Shea
  • Romy Kraus

"Are you a person that reduces stress or creates stress?" Mark Cuban on who makes his team

Field notes from a fast-thinking, fast-talking Q&A




Mark Cuban - entrepreneur, media mogul, owner of the Dallas Mavericks NBA team and lead investor on the reality television series Shark Tank answered audience questions.


On selection criteria to 'make his team'

Are you a learner, are you adaptive? Are you a person that reduces stress or creates stress?

The funny thing is that the people who create stress and don’t know they do.


On his famous investments based on Emails - what needs to be in THAT Email?

1st Paragraph: What's your product? Something that really catches my attention

2nd Paragraph: Why You? Why are you best to build this product.

3rd Paragraph: Why Me? How I can help?


I want to see you are taking the steps.

And then we do due diligence on the financial side,

What I expect is that you put in every ounce of effort to create an MVP. The best entrepreneurs find a way to get out there and sell something

On Future of Work

The future of work is an arbitrage on time. Where can we make the most out of time.

We will see more companies like postmates, you are willing to pay people to save you time.


On his approach to business and if it is different than his approach in sports

When I got to the NBA I took the same approach that I take in business and really pissed people off - but at the end it worked out.


On debunking the myth that teams win games, not players

Not true. Bad organizations can ruin teams but you need good players to win.


On Shark Tank

It shows that anybody can found a business. We can inspire people to start a business.

The one thing I would like to change (on my Shark Tank deals) is do smaller deals as well and silly deals - but the producers want big deals.


On Lessons Learned

My big problem was always I had the answer before the question was finished - I’ve become a better listener, although I still have room to improve ...

My motto in general is: Make my mistakes little and wins big.


On AI

AI is the greatest game changing technology that is out there.


On closing a business - when it's time to let go

When you know it’s time to close it you know.

One mistake entrepreneurs make is that they think as long as they still have money in the bank they keep going.


On being a young founder

Use your youth to your advantage.

I was a young founder and people wouldn’t take me seriously, but I would just out-hustle them.


On Learning - and eating ice cream with Warren Buffett

There is always people outside my comfort zone that I can learn from and that’s a lifelong goal for me. The things I’m good at I spent hours on getting better in. I tend to go down rabbit holes.


I go eat ice cream with Warren Buffett once a year. And he starts his morning with reading, reading, reading with much discipline. That’s what most people don’t do - they just go to work.


On raising money

Raising money is not an accomplishment, it’s a necessity.

Do what you can to not raise money - sweat equity is the best equity.


On scouting for new players

European players are starting to be established. Next is Africa, then India and China.


On Post COVID ideas

Do you have a vision how we can do things better?

Those are the kind of businesses that will have the best impact.


2021 will really be the year of the entrepreneur.


© 2020 SHOWRUNNER MAGAZINE