Sir Richard Branson - Founder and President, Virgin Group, Global Entrepreneur, Adventurer and Philanthropist

Can't view the video above?

Richard Branson

00:00:05 No I’m lucky I’ve never had a job I’ve always been creating things, ever since the age of 15 and you know that’s actually really what business is all about painting a picture, you know, you’ve got a bit of canvas and you want to create something really special you want to make every single little bit of that canvas as perfect as you can, you know, so if you say, you say, you know, you’re creating a new airline in America which we’ve done recently, you know, you make sure the planes are the best the seats are the best the crew are the best the, you know, food the entertainment, you know, every single little detail you get right so you know that the picture is perfect. And that’s what I’ve spent my life doing and thoroughly enjoyed doing it.

00:00:50 There’s two ways to developing entrepreneurial skills one is get out into the jungle and you give it a go and you make mistakes, but along the way and sometimes you’ll make good things and you fall flat on your face and you pick yourself up again and you try again until you succeed that’s a very good way of developing entrepreneurial skills but it’s also highly perilous only 5% of people who set-up their own business will succeed and the rest fail and therefore that can be, you know, quite painful if you haven’t got something to fall back on

00:01:29 The other way could be that you know to try and teach them in schools and they don’t even attempt it at the moment. I left school at 15 with pretty well no qualifications and spent the next 5 years running a magazine and that was my education going out meeting people interviewing people asking questions learning about life and the thing I enjoy most about my life is the fact that I am learning all the time I mean every new challenge I set myself or I’m set I’m learning about life, I’m learning about people I’ve met some of them completely new and it’s so rewarding.

00:02:14 If you’re building a business from scratch and you don’t have financial backing you’re going to have, there is a very thin dividing line between success and failure and I’ve come often very very close to the wrong side of that dividing line and I’ve had, you know, the bank manager on my doorstep the day after I’d launched Virgin Atlantic 25 years ago telling me that he was going to foreclose on the whole Virgin Group on the Monday morning, this was Friday night, unless, we got him a certain amount of money by the Monday morning and, he’d actually walked into my house and it was the first time I’d actually pushed somebody out of my house and told him he wasn’t welcomed in my house and I was shaking with anger and then as he, as I shut the door I was wondering whether it was such a good idea pushing the bank manager out of ones door but anyway somehow that weekend we managed to scrounge some money together to pay the bills but you know building a business is perilous err it is exciting and you know, you will sail close to the wind on occasions but you learn from it your learn from it

00:03:24 Business is life you know all aspect of life, the sofa I’m sitting on was created by somebody the lights was created by somebody the microphone was created by somebody, life is fascinating and so finding out about life, finding out about how these things work and how you create something special how you make it the best how you pay the bills at the end of the day I mean it is fascinating

00:03:56 END

Sir Richard Branson

Richard Branson No I’m lucky I’ve never had a job I’ve always been creating things, ever since the age of 15 and you know that’s actually really what business is all about painting a picture, you know, you’ve got a bit of canvas and you want to create something really special you want to make every single little bit of that canvas as perfect as you can, you know, so if you say, you say, you know, you’re creating a new airline in America which we’ve done recently, you know, you make sure the planes are the best the seats are the best the crew are the best the, you know, food the entertainment, you know, every single little detail you get right so you know that the picture is perfect. And that’s what I’ve spent my life doing and thoroughly enjoyed doing it. There’s two ways to developing entrepreneurial skills one is get out into the jungle and you give it a go and you make mistakes, but along the way and sometimes you’ll make good things and you fall flat on your face and you pick yourself up again and you try again until you succeed that’s a very good way of developing entrepreneurial skills but it’s also highly perilous only 5% of people who set-up their own business will succeed and the rest fail and therefore that can be, you know, quite painful if you haven’t got something to fall back on The other way could be that you know to try and teach them in schools and they don’t even attempt it at the moment. I left school at 15 with pretty well no qualifications and spent the next 5 years running a magazine and that was my education going out meeting people interviewing people asking questions learning about life and the thing I enjoy most about my life is the fact that I am learning all the time I mean every new challenge I set myself or I’m set I’m learning about life, I’m learning about people I’ve met some of them completely new and it’s so rewarding. If you’re building a business from scratch and you don’t have financial backing you’re going to have, there is a very thin dividing line between success and failure and I’ve come often very very close to the wrong side of that dividing line and I’ve had, you know, the bank manager on my doorstep the day after I’d launched Virgin Atlantic 25 years ago telling me that he was going to foreclose on the whole Virgin Group on the Monday morning, this was Friday night, unless, we got him a certain amount of money by the Monday morning and, he’d actually walked into my house and it was the first time I’d actually pushed somebody out of my house and told him he wasn’t welcomed in my house and I was shaking with anger and then as he, as I shut the door I was wondering whether it was such a good idea pushing the bank manager out of ones door but anyway somehow that weekend we managed to scrounge some money together to pay the bills but you know building a business is perilous err it is exciting and you know, you will sail close to the wind on occasions but you learn from it your learn from it Business is life you know all aspect of life, the sofa I’m sitting on was created by somebody the lights was created by somebody the microphone was created by somebody, life is fascinating and so finding out about life, finding out about how these things work and how you create something special how you make it the best how you pay the bills at the end of the day I mean it is fascinating END

Embed Code

<!-- START YOUTUBE EMBED CODE --><div class="youtube_container"><iframe width="100%" height="360" id="youtube_iframe_u9xOJokaOho" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/u9xOJokaOho?showinfo=0&rel=0&wmode=transparent&autohide=1&autoplay=1" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div><!-- END YOUTUBE EMBED CODE -->

View the full version of this video

Email to a friend

You must log in to share this video with a friend.

About Sir Richard Branson

Age at filming: 50-60, Employer's name: Self-Employed
Sir Richard Branson founded Virgin in 1970 - it started off as a mail order record retailer. Today the Virgin Group is made up of around 200 companies spanning 30 countries with involvements in leisure, travel, tourism, mobile, broadband, TV, radio, music festivals, finance, health and more. Not bad for a guy who left school with "pretty well no qualifications"!

More information about chief executives and senior officials

Check out 24 videos about this career


Average Salary
£106,080
Average Weekly Hours
41
Past Unemployment
YearUnemployed
20112%
20121%
Predicted Employment
Future Employment Chart
Top 10 Industries
For This Job
IndustryJobs
Retail trade8,764
Wholesale trade7,191
Specialised construction 3,737
Head offices, etc3,431
Public admin. & defence3,266
Auxiliary  services3,259
Health 3,153
Computer programming, etc2,825
Financial services2,418
Architectural & related2,244
Employment Status
Employment Status Chart
Description

This unit group includes those who head large enterprises and organisations. They plan, direct and co-ordinate, with directors and managers, the resources necessary for the various functions and specialist activities of these enterprises and organisations. The chief executives of hospitals will be classified in this unit group. Senior officials in national government direct the operations of government departments. Senior officials in local government participate in the implementation of local government policies and ensure that legal, statutory and other provisions concerning the running of a local authority are observed. Senior officials of special interest organisations ensure that legal, statutory and other regulations concerning the running of trade associations, employers’ associations, learned societies, trades unions, charitable organisations and similar bodies are observed. Chief executives and senior officials also act as representatives of the organisations concerned for the purposes of high level consultation and negotiation.

Qualifications

Entry may be by appointment or internal promotion, as appropriate, and is usually based on relevant experience although candidates may also require academic qualifications for some posts.

Tasks
  • Analyses economic, social, legal and other data, and plans, formulates and directs at strategic level the operation of a company or organisation
  • Consults with subordinates to formulate, implement and review company/organisation policy, authorises funding for policy implementation programmes and institutes reporting, auditing and control systems
  • Prepares, or arranges for the preparation of, reports, budgets, forecasts or other information
  • Plans and controls the allocation of resources and the selection of senior staff
  • Evaluates government/local authority departmental activities, discusses problems with government/local authority officials and administrators and formulates departmental policy
  • Negotiates and monitors contracted out services provided to the local authority by the private sector
  • Studies and acts upon any legislation that may affect the local authority
  • Stimulates public interest by providing publicity, giving lectures and interviews and organising appeals for a variety of causes
  • Directs or undertakes the preparation, publication and dissemination of reports and other information of interest to members and other interested parties. analyses economic, social, legal and other data, and plans, formulates and directs at strategic level the operation of a company or organisation
  • Consults with subordinates to formulate, implement and review company/organisation policy, authorises funding for policy implementation programmes and institutes reporting, auditing and control systems
  • Prepares, or arranges for the preparation of, reports, budgets, forecasts or other information
  • Plans and controls the allocation of resources and the selection of senior staff
  • Evaluates government/local authority departmental activities, discusses problems with government/local authority officials and administrators and formulates departmental policy
  • Negotiates and monitors contracted out services provided to the local authority by the private sector
  • Studies and acts upon any legislation that may affect the local authority
  • Stimulates public interest by providing publicity, giving lectures and interviews and organising appeals for a variety of causes
  • Directs or undertakes the preparation, publication and dissemination of reports and other information of interest to members and other interested parties. analyses economic, social, legal and other data, and plans, formulates and directs at strategic level the operation of a company or organisation
  • Consults with subordinates to formulate, implement and review company/organisation policy, authorises funding for policy implementation programmes and institutes reporting, auditing and control systems
  • Prepares, or arranges for the preparation of, reports, budgets, forecasts or other information
  • Plans and controls the allocation of resources and the selection of senior staff
  • Evaluates government/local authority departmental activities, discusses problems with government/local authority officials and administrators and formulates departmental policy
  • Negotiates and monitors contracted out services provided to the local authority by the private sector
  • Studies and acts upon any legislation that may affect the local authority
  • Stimulates public interest by providing publicity, giving lectures and interviews and organising appeals for a variety of causes
  • Directs or undertakes the preparation, publication and dissemination of reports and other information of interest to members and other interested parties.
Employment by Region
Regional Employment Chart
Gender Balance
M 68% 32% F
Skills Chart
Where to go next
VirginSector Skills Council for Passenger TransportInformation on the Passenger Transport Sector

View HTML tag cloud View Flash tag cloud

Explore related tags


Adobe Flash Player required

Adobe Flash Player

You need Adobe Flash Player in order to view this content.

Download Adobe Flash Player

Related Content