Every successful businessman will have experienced set-backs and failures - they're lying if they say they haven't. Virgin has had some tremendously successful businesses and some that have not quite worked out. Virgin Cola springs to mind - the product wasn't distinct enough from Coca-Cola.
Well, the odds must be against anybody being able to fly around the world in a balloon on the first attempt. All of us who are attempting to go around the world in balloons are effectively flying in experimental craft because these craft cannot be tested.
Entrepreneurs are natural problem-solvers, which means that we always have ideas for new businesses popping into our heads. Having a lot of options is great, but sometimes it can be hard to focus on one when you are keen to move onto the next.
Especially when you're at a high level in an organization, criticism can be devastating to an employee. I prefer to praise employees for what they're doing right, and it tends to lead to them doing more of the same. Not always, but it's the way I choose to bet.
As a father and now a grandfather to three wonderful grandchildren, I know how magical the first year of a child's life is but also how much hard work it takes. Being able to spend as much time as possible with your loved ones is absolutely vital, especially early on.
The signing of the Sex Pistols was a turning point for Virgin. It put the company on the map and, over the years, attracted bands such as Genesis, the Rolling Stones, Lenny Kravitz, and Janet Jackson. It also attracted Culture Club, who were ground-breaking.
Back when I was in school, few people understood dyslexia and what to do for it. My teachers thought I was lazy and not very clever, and I got bored easily... thinking of all the things I could do once I left school. I couldn't always follow what was going on.
We have one planet in our solar system that's habitable, and that's the Earth, and space travel can transform things back here for the better. First of all, by just having people go to space and look back on this fragile planet we live on. People have come back transformed and have done fantastic things.
There's an inherent danger in letting people think that they have perfected something. When they believe they've 'nailed it,' most people tend to sit back and rest on their laurels while countless others will be labouring furiously to better their work!
When we launched a new company, I reviewed the ads and marketing materials and asked those presenting the campaign to read everything aloud to test the phrasing and concept. If I could grasp it quickly, then it passed with muster. We would get our message across only if it was understandable at first glance.
An important priority for me is a business must get their own house in order. Be or become an agent of positive change in your own enterprise and adopt responsible practices to eliminate the risks that often lie at the root of inequality and poverty.
Well, I think that there's a very thin dividing line between success and failure. And I think if you start a business without financial backing, you're likely to go the wrong side of that dividing line.
An exceptional company is the one that gets all the little details right. And the people out on the front line, they know when things are not going right, and they know when things need to be improved. And if you listen to them, you can soon improve all those niggly things which turns an average company into an exceptional company.