Virgin Group

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The Virgin Group Paradox:
Consistent Yet Unique

Pappa Smurf
Faculty Advisor:
October 27th 2012



The Virgin Group is a conglomerate of over 200 companies. It’s multitude of products and services range includes, but certainly is not limited to music, condoms, phones, financial services, travel and leisure. The Virgin Group, also known as “Virgin,” is the brainchild of Sir Richard Branson. An eccentric entrepreneur, he instills his own values into the company to make it focused on branding and the customer experience. Branson sacrifices short term profits for a long-term goal of the “Virgin Experience.” When looking at this from a traditional business standpoint, it doesn’t seem to make sense, but it works for Branson and the Virgin Group. Virgin is a powerful brand that is loved by its customers and respected by its employees. But why is it successful? This paper will give examples to why the Virgin Groups paradoxes are key to its success. THE VIRGIN GROUP PARADOX

Introduction to the Virgin Paradox
A business paradox can provide opportunities for a company to be highly segmented and successful in the market. To think Paradoxically is to “be willing to engage in contradiction…[meaning] to integrate seemingly opposite ideas and behaviors.” (Quinn, Faerman, Thompson, Mcgrath & St.Clair, 2011) Branson implements this in Virgin by leading a company that provides consistent and unique customer experience. What makes the company consistent is Branson’s idea of what Virgin’s reason for existence. It is fun, maintains quality, competent, creates value through innovation, and promotes social responsibility. One can see that profit is not one of the primary reasons that Branson instills in the company. This is a contradiction to traditional corporations. Another paradox that one could see is that Virgin is also diverse but focused. There...
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