Mark Cuban的创业经

Mark CubanMark Cuban是谁?他是一位亿万富豪、创业者、博客和疯狂的篮球爱好者。这里有一篇关于他的中文介绍,你也可以看看NBA网站上他的英文简历。鉴于他曾成功地把创办的Broadcast以59亿美元卖给了雅虎,他的创业经验还是值得学习。BTW,那篇中文介绍里认为Broadcast比阿里巴巴更成功,因为卖的价格更高,这个是不正确的,因为在互联网泡沫期间的价格是非理性的,而且当时雅虎是股票收购。

马克的创业规则主要是应对人工搜索引擎Mahalo创办人Jason Calacanis的创业感想

1. Don’t start a company unless its an obsession and something you love.
除非鬼迷心窍,否则不要创业。这个“Obession”定位经典,就是那种迷恋无悔、屡败屡战的感觉。为创业而创业者不靠谱。

2. If you have an exit strategy, its not an obsession.
如果你有退出策略,那么就不叫鬼迷心窍。这个解释很好,很多人想创业的人总想先把退路都找好,这个一般都没戏。创办易趣的神童邵亦波也说过不投目标是上市的计划书。创业者都是没有选择的。

3. Hire people who you think will love working there.
雇佣那些你认为喜爱在这里工作的人。记住,不是最优秀的人才。

4. Sales Cures All. Know how your company will make money and how you will actually make sales.
销售为王。知道你的企业如何挣钱和你如何销售。

5. Know your core competencies and focus on being great at them. Pay up for people in your core competencies. Get the best. Outside the core competencies, hire people that fit your culture but are cheap
知道你的核心优势并专注在此。为建立核心优势的人付高价,获取最好的人才。在核心优势之外,雇佣那些符合企业文化而成本不高的人。

6. An expresso machine ? Are you kidding me ? Shoot yourself before you spend money on an expresso machine. Coffee is for closers. Sodas are free. Lunch is a chance to get out of the office and talk. There are 24 hours in a day, and if people like their jobs, they will find ways to use as much of it as possible to do their jobs.
这段细节过多。大体是说节省,不必为刻意鼓励交流而买咖啡机。员工自己会想办法找到沟通的最好方法。与国外不同,国内的创业公司最好是提供盒饭,这样可以节省员工外出的时间,因为对于创业公司,最缺的是时间。

7. No offices. Open offices keeps everyone in tune with what is going on and keeps the energy up. If an employee is about privacy, show them how to use the lock on the john. There is nothing private in a start up. This is also a good way to keep from hiring execs who can not operate successfully in a startup. My biggest fear was always hiring someone who wanted to build an empire. If the person demands to fly first class or to bring over their secretary, run away. If an exec wont go on salescalls, run away. They are empire builders and will pollute your company.
没有办公室。开放的环境会让每个人知道事情进展,鼓足干劲。创业公司没有隐私。这也是避免雇佣那些无法在创业公司成功的高管妙招。我最大的担忧来自雇佣那些想建立个人帝国的人。如果有人希望能飞头等舱或者带来自己的助理,走人。如果一个高管不愿意打销售电话(一般都是Cold Call,意思是创业阶段的吃苦),走人。这些人是帝国建造者,会污染你的公司。

这段说的虽是外在,但是反映了创业公司的实质。在马云的创业分享中也听到类似的表述。所以,如果一个创业公司里面的管理层都呆在自己的办公室里面,十之八九是成不了的。David Packard和Bill Hewlett在惠普之道中曾提倡过的走动式管理方式(Management by Walking Around)也是这个道理。

8. As far as technology, go with what you know. That is always the cheapest way. If you know Apple, use it. If you know Vista… ask yourself why, then use it. Its a startup, there are just a few employees. Let people use what they know.
技术上使用你最擅长的,这是最经济的做法。懂Apple的就用Apple,熟悉Vista的就用Vista。创业公司没有几个人,让人们自由选择。

9. Keep the organization flat. If you have managers reporting to managers in a startup, you will fail. Once you get beyond startup, if you have managers reporting to managers, you will create politics.
让组织结构扁平化。如果在创业公司里面有经理汇报给经理的层级关系,你会失败,因为这将产生官僚。

10. NEVER EVER EVER buy swag. A sure sign of failure for a startup is when someone sends me logo polo shirts. If your people are at shows and in public, its ok to buy for your own folks, but if you really think someone is going to wear your Yobaby.com polo you sent them in public, you are mistaken and have no idea how to spend your money
绝不要买带公司品牌的东西。(Swag: Any corporate/branded merchandise given out for free in order to promote the company/brand.)这段建议比较特殊,好像马克不认为印制那些带有公司Logo的衣服礼品会有效果(展会上的公司工作人员着装除外),认为这样的费用开支是错误的。

11. NEVER EVER EVER hire a PR firm. A PR firm will call or email people in the publications, shows and websites you already watch, listen to and read. Those people publish their emails. Whenever you consume any information related to your field, get the email of the person publishing it and send them an email introducing yourself and the company. Their job is to find new stuff. They will welcome hearing from the founder instead of some PR flack. Once you establish communications with that person, make yourself available to answer their questions about the industry and be a source for them. If you are smart, they will use you.
绝不要雇佣PR公司。PR公司只会给那些你已经关注的媒体、展会或网站打电话或者发邮件,你完全可以直接联系他们。他们的工作就是找到新的东西,他们喜欢听创始人的讲述而不是公告人员。一旦你和他们建立了联系,把你作为他们了解这个行业的信息源泉,回答他们的问题。如果你足够聪明,他们会用你。

的确如此,要让PR公司理解你的业务是个耗时耗力的工作。如果创业人自己都无法讲述自己的事业,不要指望别人。

12. Make the job fun for employees. Keep a pulse on the stress levels and accomplishments of your people and reward them. My first company, MicroSolutions, when we had a record sales month, or someone did something special, I would walk around handing out 100 dollar bills to salespeople. At Broadcast.com and MicroSolutions, we had a company shot. Kamikaze. We would take people to a bar every now and then and buy one or 10 for everyone. At MicroSolutions, more often than not we had vendors cover the tab. Vendors always love a good party :0
让工作变得有趣。在紧张工作中要松驰有度,及时认可你的员工。

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