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Mark Cuban: Brains and Effort Are Needed for Business, But Don’t Be a Jerk

Dallas Mavericks v San Antonio Spurs,    Game 1

Mark Cuban, co-host of CNBC’s Shark Tank and owner of the basketball team the Dallas Mavericks, had a few words of advice on how to run a business and a team. If my mom had an opinion about it, she would have said, “You can get more with sugar than with salt.” Well Cuban said something similar but more succinct: “Be nice.”  Beating out the competition means being mindful and serving people better than the competition. However, being nice isn’t enough; “Companies don’t fail for lack of cash or attitude. Companies fail for a lack of brains and effort.”

Add complacency to the list. With sports as with business, there is always competition, noted Cuban, and knowing that there is always some “disruptive” trend that could sweep away customers is the key to staying in the lead.

Cuban, as owner of the Mavericks, hasn’t always been “Mr. Nice Guy” concerning how he feels about officials, and that is why he has been fined $2 million by the NBA. However, NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, thinks Cuban’s passion makes him the ideal owner, or in his own words, “the modern owner.”

“I think before Mark came in owners kind of  sat in the back of the suite. It wasn’t cool to cheer and jump up and down. And I think once Mark demonstrated it was okay to be a super fan … the fans wanted to see he was losing as much sleep over losses as he was … It’s successful. That is what I want to be like.”

Okay, for the Jewish angle, Mark Cuban’s Russian Jewish immigrant grandparents changed their names from Chabenisky to Cuban when they came through Ellis Island.

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