October 13, 2011
Losing My Virginity by Richard Branson
One of the first and most important points that Branson touched on was that, “you want to create something that you are proud of.” By this, he means that you should have a genuine passion for the business you are starting. Without this passion, you might not have 100% belief in your company or product and as a result, not procure your greatest efforts into the success of your business. Additionally, Branson goes on to claim that he has “never gone into any business purely to make money.” For most of the publication of Student, Branson and his friends were working totally for free. They enjoyed working on the magazine and wanted to come up with fresh ideas for society. Your company represents who you are and the keys to success lie in its uniqueness and ability to fulfill a need not a desire to obtain cash. It makes it hard to distinguish between a real business plan and just an idea when your motives are strictly money. (Page 53) 2) Another important aspect of entrepreneurship that I learned is to do what you know. This will improve your ability to communicate effectively and honestly. Branson admitted that his speech at University College, London, alongside well-spoken activists Danny Cohn-Bendit and Tariq Ali, had been “the most embarrassing moment of my life,” and that he still has shyness to overcome when giving speeches today. Even though he believes he will never be a prolific speaker, when he’s discussing topics he knows, he’s able to provide truthful, knowledgeable answers as opposed to “a rapid, glib one.” Being a reliable speaker will improve your reputation and ultimately your company’s reputation, which is another reason why it’s essential to start something that you are passionate about from the beginning. (Page 56) 3) Keeping start-up costs at a minimum is imperative for a new business, especially if you have no money prior to starting it....