Mark Cuban believes that one man’s crisis is another man’s opportunity, even in the time of a global pandemic, where everything seems falling apart. “If there’s ever a benefit from a pandemic, it’s that there will be people who have a new vision for the future. I call it America 2.0.,” the billionaire entrepreneur said Tuesday at CB Insights’ virtual Technology Conference
Cuban, the owner of Dallas Mavericks and a regular host on the startup show Shark Tank, said there are vast opportunities for entrepreneurs to put their ideas into action despite the fact that traditional businesses across the spectrum are faltering while new funding has run dry.
“I think this is a phenomenal time to create new opportunities in business. I don’t think there’s a better time ever to start a company,” Cuban said during an interview with True Ventures’ Om Malik about economic outlook after the pandemic.
“Big and medium-size businesses have to deal with legacy issues,” such as adapting to a permanent remote working structure or modifying office space to ensure workplace safety, he explained. “Existing businesses are going to have to figure out how to continue on, while new businesses may recognize the difference and start an all work-from-home team, for example.”
A bigger challenge for existing businesses, especially those feeding off of the physical economy, however, is to transition their revenue model online, which can be costly and technically difficult and, in some cases, simply impossible.
Take the small-town restaurant scene as an example. “If people aren’t going back to downtown anymore, the whole ecology of coffee shops, diners…those businesses are really going to struggle,” Cuban said. “Sustaining a business and trying to retain legacy revenue streams are going to be more difficult for physical businesses, but there will be equivalent opportunities to create new businesses that aren’t held back by ways of the past.”
To seize those opportunities, Cuban advises that founders and managers need to rethink their decision-making process, as well.
“As entrepreneurs and CEOs, we tend to work top-down, where new ideas primarily come from people at the top. Now, I think that may change,” he said. “We have to solicit ideas and listen to feedback from everybody in an organization, so that we can find new lines of business and new ways of doing business.”
He added, “When we look back at the pandemic in 20 years, we’re gonna recognize that there were 20, 30 or more world-class companies that changed the game and that there was a lot of creative destruction where we saw business go by the wayside to make room for new ones.”