3 leadership lessons from Richard Branson

Virgin's 50 years of success owe a lot to its founder's self-awareness.

by James Ashton

Sir Richard Branson was meant to mark his 70th birthday last July on board his new cruise liner heading to Cuba. The Covid-19 pandemic did for those plans, just as it continues to wreak havoc with the wider tourism industry.

What is remarkable is that more than 50 years after he created the Virgin brand – which straddles airlines, mobile phones, banking, hotels and gyms - Britain’s most famous businessman sails serenely on, even when Virgin Voyages remains docked.

There are ups and downs of course – contrast the astonishing spike in space venture Virgin Galactic’s share price with last year’s ill-conceived call for a UK government bailout of Virgin Atlantic – but there is nothing quite like this relationship between one man and his company for its longevity and durability.

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