6 Things We Can Learn From Richard Branson
As founder of the Virgin Group which now owns over 400 different companies, there is much to learn from Richard Branson. There is no doubt that he has had a remarkable career; his business ventures, decisions and general demeanour demonstrate his profound success. What sets him apart from the rest however, is the exceptional work culture he has managed to create for employees across the board. If you are wondering how Branson’s career choices can benefit you – read on to discover six areas you should focus on.
1. Don’t let age be your barrier
Branson undertook his first business venture at the age of 16 – a magazine by the name of Student. On the contrary, he is currently aged 64 and has never been more powerful in the business world. It seems that with age, Branson’s ideas have only grown larger.
2. Dream big
As many of you would know, Branson is currently pursuing commercial space travel. He was once quoted to say “Dream big by setting yourself seemingly impossible challenges. You will then have to catch up with them”. This positive mind-frame is certainly something we can learn from Richard Branson, and is an important component in continuous innovation.
3. Focus on doing good
Branson’s philosophy is that if you aren’t doing something good for other people’s lives, then you shouldn’t be in business. He understands that organisations have a corporate responsibility to make a difference not just in their community, but also in staff and customers.
4. Focus on company culture
Organisations can certainly learn from Richard Branson when it comes to company culture. Known for making radical decisions such as allowing the Virgin staff to “take as much holidays as they want”, these decisions have actually paid off. Virgin has exceptional levels of staff retention, and successfully employs over 65,000 employees around the world.
5. Work life balance is important
Work, whether it be for your own business or for your manager, can be stressful at the best of times. Regularly, Branson discusses the importance of his family and keeping a balance between work and life. He also advocates delegating, and refers to it as a skill which entrepreneurs must master. Branson highlighted on his blog “you need to find time to play, then when opportunity knocks, open the door and make every second count”.
6. Learn by doing
One of Branson’s famous quotes is “The best way of learning about anything is by doing”. He makes a wonderful point however – it’s not until we put our learning into practice that we discover what does, and does not work.
Overall, it is clear that there are number of things which both businesses and individuals can learn from Richard Branson. I am wondering, what do you think is the most important lesson discussed above? Alternatively, have you learnt something else from the career of Branson? Comment your views below.
This article was written by Laura Hutton on behalf of the Australian Institute of Business. All opinions are that of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of AIB. The following sources were used to compile this article: Virgin, Virgin Mobile, and Twitter.