Poker and business have far more in common than you may think. You have to be level-headed, know how to take risks, and be able to seize opportunities if you are planning on walking away a winner.
Whether you have played before or not, here are seven reasons why you should log in to a game of online poker or sit down at a table if you want to become a better businessperson.
Know Your Hand
Poker requires you to understand the hand you have and then form a plan around what is in front of you. Business is the same; you aren’t always going to be dealt Ace, Ace; while you can fold in poker and try again, sometimes in business, you can’t.
Being able to adapt to what is given to you is the difference between a good and a great entrepreneur. The stars won’t always align, and you need to have a plan to move forward in a positive fashion.
Know Your Competition
Many times, it isn’t about creating a unique service or business; it is about creating something better than what your competition is offering. In a poker game, you aren’t trying to beat the dealer or the house; you are trying to beat the other players at the table.
In business, you need to know what your competition is capable of, and this can range from bringing in a new product before you or even running a successful sale. What they are doing is equally important as what you are doing.
When to Hold, When to Fold
You don’t have to play out every hand you are dealt, just like you don’t have to take advantage of every single opportunity or chance that is put in front of you. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to do nothing.
Poker players get in trouble when they feel they can win every hand. Statistically, you are going to lose far more than you win and therefore lose a lot of money. Use logic and reason to decipher which chances are worth the time and money and which ones you can pass on.
Going All In
Sometimes, you need to trust your judgment and go all in. Many people seem to think that going all in is far too risky and that you are setting yourself up for failure. However, this isn’t true if you have all of your bases covered.
Entrepreneurs need to realize that if they have planned correctly, there is nothing wrong with going full force into a decision, and the rewards often outweigh the risks.
Speaking of risks and taking chances, great poker players understand that a risk is not worth it if the odds aren’t in their favor. While this may sound obvious, too many people think taking a risk is like in the movies; no matter how slight the chance of success is, it still comes right somehow.
While nothing is ever 100% guaranteed, when taking a risk, consider if you are in a position to recover if it fails, there will be many occasions where the risk may seem minor. Still, the consequences of it not working out can be enormous.
There are very few games that will teach you money management better than poker, especially when your chips are low. You need to factor in paying for blinds, afford careful attention to the hands you play, and constantly figure if you can afford a significant loss.
The same can be said when you are just starting a business. You won’t be flushed with cash, and every purchase and expense needs to be carefully considered so that you don’t end up in a hole you can’t get out of.
Almost every poker professional will tell you that long-term success trumps short-term wins every day of the week. Small but consistent wins will let you grow your money, while huge spikes and drops usually end with you losing.
Once again, it is much more important to be slow and steady in business, as this allows you to grow your money, build relationships, and have more growth year after year instead of being a flash in the pan.