Name: Sir Richard Charles Nicholas Branson
Date of Birth: 18 July 1950
Richard Branson – Overview:
In 1966, a 16-year-old boy who suffered with dyslexia dropped out of school. His teachers told him he was incapable of achieving anything significant. He has since gone on to build a multi-billion-dollar empire. His life has been an amazing and inspirational adventure that anybody can learn from. He is currently one of the richest people in the world today with a net worth of approximately $5 Billion. He is the founder of Virgin Group Limited, the venture capital conglomerate company. It is based out of Great Britain which oversees ~400 different businesses from around the globe.
His father Edward James Branson worked as a barrister while his mother Eve Branson was employed as a flight attendant. As Richard struggled with dyslexia, it was very difficult for him to be an ordinary student. He dropped out of school when he was just 16 years old and started his first project, which was a youth magazine called “Student”. The revenue from the first circulation was around $8000 just from advertisements. The money covered the costs, so he distributed all the 50,000 copies for free. The project was a success, and it kick-started Richard Branson’s entrepreneurial career.
In 1969, he decided to get involved in the record industry with “Virgin”. Initially, it was a mail order company for selling records. He opened a record shop in London which wasn’t a huge success but it provided the needed capital to expand further. A few years later in 1972, he opened his own recording studio called “Virgin Records”. Many famous musicians hired the studio for their recordings, such as “Culture Club”, “The Sex Pistols” and “The Rolling Stones”. Soon, Virgin Record Studio became one of the top recording studios in the world.
Richard Branson – Expanding:
Branson expanded his entrepreneurial efforts even further this time to include travel company “The Voyager Group” in 1980, “Virgin Atlantic” in 1984 and a series of Virgin Megastores. However, his success was not always a given and the journey was not all glory and achievement. In 1992, his company Virgin Group Limited fell into a bad financial situation and was struggling for its survival. Later, failing to clear the debts, “Virgin Records” was sold to “Thorn EMI” for around $1 Billion. This was like a defeat for Branson and he was devastated by this. He cried days and nights after the deal was concluded.
Richard Branson – New Challenges:
A few years later, he picked himself up and started his entrepreneurial journey again. Entering the music business once more, he founded “V2 Records”. In 1993, he entered the railroad business with the company “Virgin Trains”. The same year, he also founded “Virgin Radio”. The “Virgin” empire did not just stop here. “Virgin Airlines” followed and then came the very popular “Virgin Galactic”, a space tourism company which he announced and he has also partnered with “Scaled Composites” to form “The Spaceship Company”, to develop a sub-orbital space plane. In 2013, the project made an impressive leap forward with the test launch of “Spaceship 2”.
Richard Branson – Hobbies and Goals:
Branson is also known for his sporting achievement and has challenged himself with many record-breaking adventures including the fastest ever Atlantic Ocean crossing, a series of hot-air balloon adventures and kite-surfing across the English Channel. He is not just another typical business tycoon trying to spread his empire to make money. He cares for the world and in line with this, founded “Virgin Unite”, a non-profit organisation which he has worked alongside to perform charity work. It supports a wide range of charity projects from helping homeless children in the US to providing supplies and training to indigenous people in Morocco.
Richard Branson – Future:
Unlike some of his influential contemporaries, Branson has so far managed to steer clear of any personal controversy in the press. Perhaps this is because there is not enough time left for him to get into trouble after his many ongoing pursuits. After a long and fruitful career across multiple areas, we can never be sure what Branson is going to get in next. However, we do know that he enjoys taking risks and following his hunches. It seems that with age, he is becoming increasingly interested in pursuits that help the world and its people.
Richard Branson MBTI (Probable):
The ESFP (Entertainer) likes to live in the moment, experiencing life to the fullest. They enjoy people as well as material comforts. Rarely allowing conventions to interfere within their lives, they look to find creative ways to meet human needs. They are usually observant, practical, realistic and specific with their goals. They look to make decisions per their own personal standards and use their feelings internally to identify and empathise with other people. Naturally, they are attentive to the world around them.
Richard Branson Mindset – Quotes:
“There’s nothing like the endorphins from being fit, and the incredible endorphin rush that goes with that.”
“Being a good listener is absolutely critical to being a good leader; you have to listen to the people who are on the front line.”
“The art of delegation is one of the key skills any entrepreneur must master.”
“My interest in life comes from setting myself huge, apparently unachievable challenges and trying to rise above them.”
“I was dyslexic, I had no understanding of schoolwork whatsoever. I certainly would have failed IQ tests.”
“The funny thing is people won’t let me pay for things. I’ll be in a restaurant and the manager will say, ‘Oh no, it’s on the house.’”
“There’s an inherent danger in letting people think that they have perfected something.”
“If you want to be more productive, then start at the start: get there on time.”
“Can you imagine what a different world we will live in when businesses do what’s right for the communities and the environment in everything they do?”
Richard Branson – Keys to Success:
- Keep Things Simple – The traditional values we hold, such as politeness, timeliness and being presentable are as important now as they always have been. The best thing about these ideals are that they are very simple to achieve but so many people forget to do them. Put yourself at an advantage by making the most of this.
- Improve the World – Try to invest your time into activities or ventures which will improve the planet and other people. If this is difficult, at the very least, make sure you are not causing negative impact. By focusing on things with good moral consequence, you will have more to work towards to increase your success.
- Listen to Others – Taking the time to listen to what other people say is often an undervalued skill. By listening to others instead of talking about yourself, you are can show people that you care about them and their problems. This can pay you back handsomely when they consider how they feel towards you and whether they should help you in the future.
Richard Branson’s Other Interests:
Fitness, Extreme Sports, Humanitarianism