When starting a new company there are challenges and obstacles along the way. How you start is usually the break or make factor. Mark Cuban is one of the most successful entrepreneurs and he does take a lot of time creating the buzz around his name because he doesn’t like PR firms that much and even if he uses them, it’s so clear they are not his favorite way of creating interest for a startup.
While getting the buzz about his name and branding himself, he shares a lot of things with people who get in touch with him. He speaks at events for startups and businesses and most of the things he says are summed up in the following 13 most prominent tips he has ever given to startups:
1. Don’t start a company unless its an obsession or something you love.
2. If you have an exit strategy its not an obsession.
3. Hire people who you think will love working there.
4. Sales will cure all. Know how your company will make money and how you will actually make sales.
5. Know your competencies and focus on being great at them. Pay up for people in your core competencies. Get the best.
6. An espresso machine? Are you kidding me? Coffee is for closers. There are 24 hours in a day and if people like their jobs they’ll find ways to use as much of it as possible to do their jobs.
7. No private offices. Open office spaces keep everyone in tune with what is going on and keep the energy up.
8. As far as technology, go with what you know. If you know Apple, use it. If you know Vista, ask yourself why, then use it. And let your people use what they know.
9. Keep the organisation flat. If you have managers reporting to managers in a startup, you will fail.
10. Never buy swag. A sure sign of failure for a startup is when someone sends out logo-embroidered polo shirts.
11. Never hire a PR firm. Whenever you see any published information related to your field, get the email of the journalist publishing it and send them a message introducing yourself and the company. They’ll welcome hearing from the founder instead of some PR flack. Startups like Pressfarm come in handy because they offer you a database to search for journalists’ contacts and craft an email pitch to get the attention of the media and boost your PR.
12. Make the job fun for employees. Keep a pulse on the stress levels and accomplishments of your people and reward them. In Mark’s first company, Microsolutions, when they had a record sales month, he would walk around handing out $100 bills to sales people. That’s a motivator!
In an interview with dreamchasershow.com Mark was asked about how he finds the right people to work with him in his ventures. Mark’s answer was:
13. When you’re looking for people to work with you find someone who is nothing like you.
He borrows this from his own character. He is the red-hot fired up kind of guy, so finding people who are the opposite of him has always been the solution for finding the right people. That makes sense, if you are in a team of people who are exactly same as you are, that startup will probably fail because nobody brings any new aspect on board. It is very important to be different.
Originally published at press.farm on March 3, 2015.