Mark Cuban, billionaire and Shark Tank investor, believes in the importance of being a successful salesperson. At least that’s what he tells his younger self in an interview with Bloomberg’s Barry Ritholtz. I didn’t think I was that good at sales, but I turned out to be good at it, Cuban says.
Early in their career, everyone picks up important skills including how to compose an effective email, how to negotiate a raise, and when to quit a job.
However, Mark Cuban claimed that the most crucial thing he learned throughout his early jobs was the art of selling. The millionaire told the School of Hard Knocks in a March TikTok that if he could go back in time and tell himself one thing, it would be to continue on his current path and “be a salesperson.”
According to Cuban in the video, “I would go back and do exactly the same thing I did.” You can always start a business because you are an entrepreneur at heart once you understand how to market.
Cuban has been candid about how he went from having little to no notoriety to becoming rich and famous. The owner of the Dallas Mavericks said on a 2018 episode of ABC’s “Shark Tank” that he was raised in a working-class family outside of Pittsburgh and that his mother had advised him to learn how to lay carpet or work in a mill for job stability.
Instead, Cuban resold coins, stamps, and baseball cards. According to him on TikTok, the experience helped him understand the first rule of sales, which is that “selling isn’t about persuading, it’s about helping.”
“You put yourself in a position to serve others when you understand what they need and want,” he said. “Then you complete transactions and make good things happen, and that’s how you build companies.”
Less than ten years after receiving his undergraduate degree, Cuban founded and then sold his systems integration computer company, MicroSolutions, for $6 million, thanks to the idea.
Cuban has previously proclaimed his faith in the potency of his sales concept. In an interview in 2018, he claimed that sales are now less about “who can talk the fastest” and more about assisting clients in obtaining the goods or services they require.
“You are not going to have a company if you can’t create a value for them, if you can’t demonstrate why your product will be better for them and their life than the other options out there or what they were doing before,” he said.
According to studies, working in sales isn’t a bad place to start for entrepreneurs hoping to amass wealth comparable to Mark Cuban’s ($5.9 billion, according to Bloomberg). According to a 2017 poll by leadership consulting company Heidrick & Struggles, 15% of CEOs from the top 100 Fortune 500 businesses started out in sales.
Historian and sociologist Rainer Zitelmann interviewed 45 people whose wealth ranged from $11 million to $3 billion for his book “The Wealth Elite: A breakthrough study of the mentality of the ultra rich.” More than 65% of them claimed that having experience in sales contributed “significantly” to their financial success.
Additionally, Cuban has said that having a sales background is like having career insurance. On NPR’s “How I Build This” episode in 2016, he stated that he wasn’t concerned about losing his money for that very reason. He is aware that his skill set could enable him to create money from nothing once more.
“I would start working and acquire a job as a bartender at night and a sales position during the day,” Cuban stated. You have to be lucky to become a billionaire, but could I again become a multimillionaire? I am confident.