20 Things I Learned from Richard Branson

From his autobiography, “Screw It, Let’s Do It”

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To be honest, I hadn’t known much about Richard Branson before I started reading his book, “Screw It, Let’s Do It”. I only knew him as the founder of Virgin Group of Companies, but he is certainly much more than that. Once, I can remember giggling at the title of his other book “Losing My Virginity” with my friend (yes we were that immature). I never knew he’d end being one of my biggest inspirations. My intention is not to spoil the book for you. These quotes are merely the surface of it. This is a book that I’d totally recommend to anyone, specially for a budding entrepreneur looking for some motivation and lessons. (There is absolutely no harm in make it your cookbook.) Undeniably we all have something to learn from this individual who started his venture at the age of 16 by publishing a magazine– “Student”, currently has over 400 businesses worldwide under his brand — “Virgin” and someone who has negotiated with Saddam Hussain and has worked together with Nelson Mandela.

  1. “Believe it can be done. 
    Have goals.
    Live life to the full.
    Never give up.
    Prepare well.
    Have faith in yourself.
    Try and try again.
    Help each other.”
  2. “What’s the point of selecting someone for a particular task if you ignore his or her experience and ability? It’s like consulting experts and not even considering their advice”
    “People generally don’t leave their jobs through lack of pay– they leave because they aren’t valued”
  3. “Keep your eyes open. Look and learn. You don’t have to go to art school to be a fashion designer. Join a fashion company and push a broom. Work your way up.”
  4. “I didn’t set out to be rich. The fun and the challenge in life were what I wanted.”
  5. “As soon as something stops being fun, I think it’s time to move on. Life is too short to be unhappy.”
  6. “Is the job you hate really your only option? Whoever you are, you have other choices. Look around to see what else you can do.
  7. “Be bold but don’t gamble.”
  8. “Chase your dreams but live in the real world.
  9. “So, even my diary is full for months ahead, I have learned to live for the moment.”
  10. “Put family and team first.
    Be loyal
    Face problems head on
    Money is for making things happen
    Pick the right people and reward talent.”
  11. “Those patient men (Japanese businessmen) taught me how important it was always to keep eyes and ears open and to be polite.”
  12. “Your reputation is everything… Be fair in all your dealings. Don’t cheat– but aim to win.”
    “Never do anything if you can’t sleep at night.”
  13. “We all have to pull our weight and work hard to leave the world a better place.”
  14. “Whatever your field, you must be passionate about it and create excitement in everything you do. Beat your drum and look beyond obvious.”
  15. “I make sure than I spend most of my time out and about, talking to people, asking questions, making notes, experiencing business through the customers’ eyes.”
  16. “If you are passionate about your product, you’ll get other people to believe in it too.”
  17. “Change the world, even if in a small way
    Make a difference and help others
    Do no harm
    Always think what you can do to help”
  18. “The window of opportunity can be gone in the blink of an eye. If you get a good idea, grab it and develop it fast. Be careful, but not slow.”
  19. “Be a common, regular person.”
  20. “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.”

P.S.: I am not a big fan of motivational books by mere authors. But this largely inspired me as all these words are coming from a person who have actually achieved something in his life. This is a must-read book I tell ya. And thank you cousin for lending me the book! Cheers!