Learn from Richard Branson, a highly successful entrepreneur and founder of the Virgin Group. I started reading his book, “Losing My Virginity: How I’ve Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way.” You can learn a lot by studying his experiences and principles. These tidbits were gleaned from just the first few sections of the book:
1. That fateful balloon flight in January 1997, though it nearly killed him, did not deter him. “I knew I would attempt another balloon flight because it’s one of the few great challenges left.” Do you challenge yourself everyday?
2. He doesn’t take time making decisions or jumping into a task. “I just pick up the phone and get on with it.” Too often our business activity gets mired in “paralysis by analysis.” Or, we hesitate for fear of making a mistake. Make that decision so you can move on.
3. He’s a fearless entrepreneur. As a teenager he cofounded a magazine. Even before the first issue was printed, he called major corporations trying to get them to advertise. Do you have the courage to do what is necessary to advance your idea? Do you have the courage to approach major players? That’s where real growth comes from.
4. He wouldn’t go into business merely to make money. He talks about the need for the business to be enriching for the person. I would add that we must also keep the customers’ needs in mind. Proper compensation will follow.
5. Sometime opportunities occur when you least expect them. Act quickly, and ask the right questions. Note what happened as he was out looking for a houseboat.
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