Why Entrepreneurs Play Poker and Are Successful

An entrepreneur in a suit and tie.

Why Do Entrepreneurs Succeed at Poker?

Entrepreneurs often step into the unknown when they start a new business or invest their funds in another person’s idea to help them realize their dreams.

Poker players understand the feeling of not knowing how a particular game could turn out. The game of poker, whether five-card poker or Texas Hold’em, is all about understanding how much you can win. That is how players adjust poker strategy on the fly, as they attempt to outwit their opponents.

If you are an avid poker player or a fan of the sport, you may have noticed that many successful businessmen and entrepreneurs take a liking to this game. Most of them are extremely successful at poker, which begs the question, are there similarities between the two?

Staying Calm Under Pressure

The best poker players are the ones who always remain calm. Whether they have a pair of aces or twos, they never let anyone see or know how they are feeling. Running a business is a very similar proposition, as you must keep your cards close to your chest.

Whether you have partners, investors, or employees who are wondering if your company will be a success, you cannot let any of them see the full picture. They must believe you are on the right track, and to keep that going, you must know how to stay calm in pressured situations.

Between dealing with unruly customers, regrouping after a delayed delivery of supplies, or facing an issue at one of your locations, you know that running a successful business means thinking clearly in the most stressful situations. Poker players are the same, which is why an entrepreneur can quickly transition into a great poker player.

The Adrenaline Rush

The reason poker players love the game is because of the adrenaline rush they feel each time they are playing against tough opponents. Such a feeling is very familiar to businessmen, which is why they may gravitate toward this game.

Perhaps a person who now has a successful business is not getting that same thrill from their company, as they are now established and no longer feel like they have anything to prove. Now they can get their thrills from playing Texas Hold’em for money.

One of the key criteria for a great poker player is to thrive in such adrenaline-rush moments. Many people who are new to the game can let the moment control them. Perhaps they get caught up in the excitement, which leads them to make poor decisions. A businessman who has been through those testing moments is well-versed in making the correct calls, even when the voice inside them is screaming in anticipation of an exciting moment.

Knowing When to Stop Bluffing

Being good at bluffing is a significant aspect of being a successful poker player. The same can be true in entrepreneurship, as you have to convince investors, partners, and vendors that you are a worthwhile investment of their time or money.

Even when you are not fully confident that you can deliver on your promises, you bluff that you will get the job done. The problem is that in both poker and business if someone calls out your bluff, you are in trouble.

Knowing when you can get away with a slight exaggeration or bluff, and when you must fold and realize that you are not at the required level, is the difference between a great poker player and businessman, and those who do not succeed at either.

Accepting Your Limitations

One of the temptations as both an entrepreneur and a businessman is to think that you have no limitations. You may look at success stories of people who were brought up with nothing but went on to become hugely successful. Perhaps you see yourself similarly.

Being a good businessman and poker player is about knowing your limitations. When you are not confident about a particular aspect of your game or career, you can take a step back, reassess your situation, and then decide what steps to take next.

Make the Most of Your Opportunities

Whether you are passionate about poker, entrepreneurship, or both, being successful is all about taking the chances that come your way.

By weighing up the available options, seeing what cards you have in your hand, and determining whether your hand is better than what the other person or company may play, you can achieve your dreams.

Both poker and entrepreneurship offer people the chance to become one in a million. To take a handful of chips or an idea that is in their mind, and transform that into a winning stack.

About Carson Derrow

My name is Carson Derrow I'm an entrepreneur, professional blogger, and marketer from Arkansas. I've been writing for startups and small businesses since 2012. I share the latest business news, tools, resources, and marketing tips to help startups and small businesses to grow their business.