Ruben (not his real name) knew he needed a break from the hectic pace of running his business. So when a friend suggested a weekend in Vegas for some shows and a few rounds of blackjack, he was all ears.
However, Ruben had never been much of a gambler. He worked too hard for his money to want to throw it away, he said. Therefore, he wanted to be sure to give himself the best chances of winning he possibly could.
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Never fear, his friend told him. There are people out there who can teach you all about playing blackjack and how to do it right.
The next day, Ruben’s friend showed him the following article. It told Ruben all he needed to know. What’s more, he quickly learned that the skills and qualities that stood him in good stead in running his business also helped him at the blackjack table.
Entrepreneurs and Blackjack Players Have Much in Common
If the aim of the game is success and money, then entrepreneurs and blackjack players have a lot more in common than people think.
Many would argue that blackjack is nothing more than a game of luck. However, the pro players who have made their fortune through following a set of strict rules and disciplines would undoubtedly have a different opinion. For them, blackjack is a fun card game that can be beaten by skill. Moreover, many of the techniques they use are interchangeable with the world of business.
Rules of Blackjack Apply to Business
For instance, Jack Ma, co-founder of the famous MIT Blackjack Club and serial entrepreneur, often speaks openly about how his experiences as a card-counter helped him build a management software program startup. This is known as the MIT Blackjack Business Model. And it’s the same model that helped him sell his startup to Twitter for $50 million.
Though blackjack and management software seem worlds apart, the rules he follows for success in both fields are identical.
With this in mind, here is a list of the rules top blackjack players follow, along with an explanation of how they can be applied to business.
Make a Plan and Stick with It
For card-counters, this basic strategy is fundamental to success. Plus, the only way the game can be beaten is if the player is willing to follow the rules relentlessly. Should they deviate, even slightly, be it through hesitation or fear, their chances of winning are drastically reduced.
Similarly, for an entrepreneur who is building a business from scratch, a solid strategy must be set in place before they begin. What’s more, the plan must be followed through to the end.
Avoid Risks of Chance
As thrilling as it may feel to throw caution to the wind and leave everything to chance when seated at the blackjack table, the pros will tell you that type of behavior more often than not leads to failure. Success, however, comes from reading the game and knowing what bets to make based on strategic planning and certainty.
In business, too, gambling everything on a hunch can have devastating effects. This is why it is crucial for entrepreneurs to avoid making impulsive decisions based on whims of fancy.
Ignore Negative Influences
Confidence and conviction in one’s plans and beliefs are crucially important, both in blackjack and in business. There are many people out there who will jump at the change to criticize others and offer their own suggestions on how to be successful. However, it is essential that business owners stay focused on their plan and ignore distractions from others.
Always Keep a Cool Head
Few things in this word are uglier to watch than the wrath of a sore loser. However, for some blackjack players, a loss is just too much to handle. Often, the only way they feel they can cope with it is by shifting the blame of their failure onto another person, such as the dealer.
Similarly, any business owner who fails to take responsibility for their mistakes and is quick to scorn employees only proves that they are a weak leader. However, a boss who can keep it cool and take control of a bad situation without blaming others is someone who deserves respect.
This type of angry, irrational behavior is horrible to watch. What’s more, it is as ugly in the world of business as it is at the blackjack table.
Stay Humble in Success
Confidence is good, but arrogance is an ugly trait. Moreover, arrogance has been the downfall of many successful blackjack players and businesspersons alike. When players get into the habit of winning and convince themselves they are on a “lucky streak,” they are much more likely to take their hand off the wheel and start making riskier bets. Consequently, they jeopardize everything they have accomplished.
Likewise, when things are going well, business owners may feel confident enough to begin relaxing and taking their foot off the pedal. However, when a person becomes arrogant enough to be lazy or careless, their business will soon suffer the consequences.
Quit While You’re Ahead
While sticking with a sound strategy is strongly recommended, many of the failures in blackjack come from players who don’t know when to quit. So blinded are they by their desire to win, they fail to see that the game is lost. As a result, they end up losing all of their fortunes. From an entrepreneur’s perspective, this rule is crucially important.
As difficult as it may sometimes be to let go of something you believe in—be it a failing investment or an underperforming employee—sometimes the best thing to do is just cut it loose and concentrate on future success.
About the Author
John Woods is a professional copywriter with seven years of experience creating gripping content for a wide variety of businesses and audiences. His work has been published on UC Today, No Jitter, Customer Contact Central, and InGenius. He is a highly versatile writer who specializes in the fields of technology, cloud communications, travel & leisure, as well as gambling and online casinos. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, watching football, playing guitar, and trying to learn Spanish.