I am a big Richard Branson fan and have read all of his books. He just talks great sense and I love his attitude to both business and life. It was great therefore to see his Top Ten Tips for Success published on the BBC website this weekend. I have summarised and edited them below.
1. Follow Your Dreams & Just Do It
Follow your dreams, get involved in life in the things that interest you. If you are going to create a business, make sure it is your hobby, your passion or something that you really enjoy. Don’t just set out to do something for the sake of making money.
I think lots of people have lots of great ideas, but very few people actually go out and try to put them into practice.
It’s the people who say I’m just going to do it, that end up having a chance of having a much more exciting and rewarding life.
2. Make A Positive Difference & Do Some Good
The first thing to do if you want to become an entrepreneur is basically to have an idea that is going to make a positive difference to other people’s lives. A business is simply that. If you’re running a business you are in a position where you can make a hell of a difference in this world.
3. Believe in your ideas and be the best
You definitely need to believe in your idea. There’s really no point in doing something in life unless people feel really good about it and proud about it. You’ve got to have passion for it and you’ve got to be able to inspire other people to have a passion for it too.
4. Have Fun & Look After Your Team
I 100% believe that it’s important to have fun and if you’re not having fun anymore, it might be time to move on. You should have fun from the top down and create the kind of environment that’s pleasant to work in.
5. Don’t Give Up
It’s extremely important not to give up. There have been situations in my adventures, like crossing the pacific in a balloon, where the odds were stacked very heavily against us surviving.
Being an entrepreneur is not that dissimilar to being an adventurer. You have plenty of situations where your back is right up against a wall and you’ve just got to work day and night to make sure you overcome the difficulties a particular company finds itself in. Brush yourself down the next day and move on into something else.
6. Make Lots Of Lists & Keep Setting Yourself New Challenges
I make copious lists because I think it’s the little details that make for an exceptional company over an average company. Details are very important and I think it’s important to keep setting yourself new challenges and targets.
7. Spend Time With Your Family & Learn To Delegate
One of the early things you have to do as an entrepreneur is learn the art of delegation. Find people who are better than you to run the companies on a day-to-day basis, freeing yourself up to think about the bigger picture and spend time with your family.
8. Try Turning Off The TV & Get Out There & Do Things
My mum brought us up very much to get out there and do things, don’t watch other people do things, and don’t watch television. I think that was a good way of bringing up kids. With my own kids, we’ve spent quite a lot of time in the Caribbean and we never watch television there.
9. When People Say Bad Things About You, Just Prove Them Wrong
There are people who hang onto the coat tails of successful people and try to sell a few books on the back of their name. It’s unpleasant but you know that if you sue them or kick up a fuss, all it will do is publicise the book. So I’ve had to learn the art of ignoring people like that.
10. Do What You Love & Have A Sofa In The Kitchen
You only live one life, so I would do the thing that you are going to enjoy. When life boils down, this might sound like a little much coming from me, I do have my own little island in the Caribbean, but when we are on that island, we tend to just live in the kitchen. The truth is, so long as you’ve got a kitchen which has space for a sofa, and a bedroom, and a partner that you love, you don’t necessarily need the add-ons in life.
Looking through the list I am pleased that apart from the last one, we have covered most of them in more detail thorough our MTD blogs and articles.
So there you have it, wise words from Richard Branson, a true business icon and a genuine gentleman.