Reaching billionaire status was no walk in the park for Tilman J. Fertitta, owner, chairman and CEO of Fertitta Entertainment, which owns the restaurant powerhouse Landry's as well as Golden Nugget casinos.
"It's never been easy — myself and my team, we've always fought through every issue," Fertitta said. "I could have throw in the towel many times in the beginning, OK."
In fact, he admitted to making many mistakes along the way.
"Have I timed things wrong? 100 percent. Have I had missed opportunities? 100 percent," Fertitta said.
But he never made what he calls "the biggest mistake."
"The biggest mistake that people make is they give up too soon, and they throw in the towel," he said.
Becoming a successful leader has a lot to do with realizing how strong you are, Fertitta said.
"The human body and the human mind and the human heart can take a lot. Fight through bad times in business, and you'll be surprised you can work through it usually," he said. "But people give up too soon, and they don't realize how much more they can put into it without giving up."
Tune in to "Billion Dollar Buyer," Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on CNBC, to watch entrepreneurs vie for Tilman Fertitta's business.