Saturday, April 23, 2011

Survival Skills: Donald Trump

The Donald on big risks, suiting up, scars that tell no tales, and why he may run for president.

What should every man know about money?

Money is a great tool that makes life so much easier. You have to preserve it. I’ve seen so many people stupidly and foolishly lose their wealth. I do embrace risk, and over the years I’ve taken big positions in things, but I never risk 100 percent even on a so-called sure thing. Too many times that sure thing turns out to be a sure loser.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

Love what you do, because when you really enjoy and understand your field, good things fall into place. That advice has come from many successful people, including my father, who was a builder in Brooklyn and Queens. I vividly remember that when other people would go out and play tennis, he’d go out and check building sites.

That essential tool should every man own?

For me it’s a suit. That’s my uniform, no different than the Army or the Navy. That’s what I work in, and that’s what makes me comfortable.

What one thing should every man know about women?

They’re smarter than we are.

Have you ever cheated death?

About 20 years ago, I very easily could have been on a helicopter that went down and everyone was killed. I don’t even like talking about it — some friends of mine were on that flight and they’re gone. If I had been on board, we wouldn’t have Trump. That would be terrible.

What’s the best cure for a hangover?

I can’t tell you. I’ve never had a drink of alcohol in my life.

What’s the best way to motivate other men?

By example. It’s a lot easier to be a leader when you have a track record of success. I’ve called a lot of correct shots and made a lot of money over the years, so people like to listen to what I have to say.

What’s the best way to intimidate other men?

Direct confrontation. A lot of people don’t like confrontation.

How should a man face his fears?

There’s nothing wrong with just staying away from what makes you afraid. It makes life a lot simpler. There’s nothing to be ashamed of. But certain people, like me, like to confront their fears. That’s usually a competitive person.

What movie should every man see?

Citizen Kane. The themes of power, and how power corrupts, resonate with me.

Do you have a scar that tells a story?

I do, but I can’t talk about it. It’s too risqué and personal.

What’s the secret to life?

You need talent to get through life, but you also need luck. If you didn’t go to a certain ballgame or a certain meeting, you might have had a whole different life. I’m a big believer in luck, and I wouldn’t have said it years ago, but some people are luckier than others. I have friends, if they’re just walking down the street, they get injured. I will say this: The harder you work, the luckier you get.

Do you have a hidden skill?

For whatever reason, I’m a good putter. I’m the best putter. I started playing golf at the Wharton School and now I play once or twice a week, mostly on weekends. I’ve won many tournaments and club championships, and the best part of my game is putting. I have good eyesight, but it’s pretty instinctual. I have friends who study a putt from five different angles, but I read it better when I’m standing right over the ball. I don’t know what it is exactly — I just have a feel for the green.

What advice would you give the younger you?

Never, ever quit.

What’s the best way to impress a woman?

I have friends who are successful, but do very poorly with women. They don’t have the look. If you are good-looking and successful, it’s a very powerful combination.

When is it okay for a man to lie?

If you’re trying not to hurt somebody.

How should a man handle regret?

By not thinking about it.

What one thing do you want to do before you die?

I may run for president. May. Right now, America is being taken to the cleaners by the Chinese. We’re being taken to the cleaners by OPEC. We’re being taken to the cleaners by virtually everybody that does business with us. We’re a laughingstock throughout the world. As president, I’d bring respect back to this country. Yes, I think I’d have to use the phrase “You’re fired” a few times in that job. A lot of times. Too many.

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