After a fight with one of his teachers, in 1966 a young 16 year old decided that school wasn’t for him. He was dyslexic and felt that school was holding him back instead of propelling him forward in life.
With a great idea he began to work and started selling advertising on a magazine he created with one of his close friends. He was selling these advertisements to local businesses in the area with just a tiny budget. He had to work out of a church nearby to get everything set up and launched.
As this business began to take off, 4 years had passed and he was looking for ways he could get to the next level. With another stroke of genius, he started to sell records by mail to the people who bought the magazine. They were such a big hit that he was able to build a record store with the profits in one years time.
With another 2 years of success under his belt, he decided that he wanted to own a recording studio and start up a record label. So that’s just what he did.
He found artists in his local area and began to rent out his studio. There was one man, Mike Oldfield, who recorded a song that later became a hit called, Tubular Bells and eventually sold over 5 MILLION copies!
Not bad for the first release of a brand new record label.
The next 10 years of this kids life was quite exciting. He was able to add bands like the Sex Pistols and the Rolling Stones. He was able to take his business knowledge to start many other successful businesses in airline, trains, phones and many others – eventually overseeing 400 different companies!
That young 16 year old boy that decided school wasn’t for him decided to start on his dreams despite the fact that he had no experience to do what he did. He went and did it anyway and is now a billionaire because of it. That young boy is Richard Branson.
The Secret To Richard Branson’s Billionaire Status
Anywhere you go online, people are in awe of what this man was able to accomplish in his lifetime. His interviews were always off the cuff and the answers he gave always made sense to me.
The story of how he started Virgin Airlines is quite remarkable and it really speaks to how he not only approaches business, but his own life as well.
Here’s his story summarized:
“No one knew who I was at the time I had my business in the early days. Later in my twenties I was off to the Virgin Islands where I had a very special person waiting for me. You can imagine that I was in a hurry to get there.
While I was sitting at the airport, they said over the loud speaker that my flight was cancelled due to mechanical issues. There weren’t any other flights that night so I had a crazy idea. I was going to get to the Virgin Islands one way or another, so I charterd a private plane to take me there even though I didn’t have the money for it.
I found a small cardboard where I wrote “Virgine Airlines. $29.” and took it over to the other people who were on my flight. I was able to get the private plane sold using their money to pay for it. Needless to say, we all made it to the Virgin Islands that night.
– Richard Branson
Many people would love to learn from this business icon. His passion and knowledge resonates with business owners all around the world – and people listen.
Why Successful People Reach The Top
There’s a speach where Branson was speaking to a group of young business entrepreneurs and he was on a panel of other experts to talk about what the future of business looked like.
Everyone around him was talking about the latest trends and technology. They each had their own ideas on what the future of business was going to be like making it more complex than it needed to be.
“Screw it, just get on with it and do it.”
The person who was taking the complex and breaking it down so simply was worth the most amount of money on that panel of experts. He was the only billionaire.
It makes you stop and think, “What is the biggest difference between these experts and Richard Branson. What is the outlier?”
In my opinion, this was the biggest factor and what made all the difference in the world:
You can easily see by his actions that when Branson says, “Screw it, just get on with it and do it.”, he actually lives his life this way. It’s in every cell in his body and he believes it.
He dropped out of school just to start a business worth persuing because he wanted to. He signed controversial bands to his record label. When he didn’t have the money, he found a way to charter a plane.
Branson isn’t the kind of person that sits around and makes excuses about how now isn’t the perfect time. It’s NEVER the perfect time, but Branson is the first to get started and get the ball moving.
He’s willing to take the first step even when it might seem crazy to most people. I’ll admit, it sounded crazy to me at first, but after I analyzed what was going on, it made perfect sense.
Do What You’ve Been Putting Off Now
Now, I get that this story is an extreme example, but we can all see how Richard Branson was able to reach extraordinary levels in his life.
If I had to boil down a habit that all successful people do whether it’s conscious or unconscious, it would be that they start. They don’t wait until they’re ready. They just start and the rest falls into place.
Branson’s business name even tells a story of his habits. “Virgin.” In all of his 400 companies, he was a virgin at every one of them before he started and now he’s one of the richest men on the planet. He eat, sleeps and breathes, “Screw it, just get on with it and do it.”
It’s not possible to start that many companies and feel ready to begin each one of them. He wasn’t prepared or qualified to launch any of the businesses he did. He chose himself.
You are never going to feel ready. I am never going to feel ready. We have to know that if we’re going to do anything meaningful in our lives or business that it’s never going to be the “right time.”
It’s natural to not feel certain and prepared. It’s even natural to feel unqualified! One thing is for sure though, you have everything you need right now to do what you’ve been putting off. It doesn’t matter if you want to launch a company, lose 50 lbs, become an author or achieve anything worthy.
Just get moving.
The winners will chose to start despite not being prepared, certain, or qualified. It’s my goal with this blog post that you will start whatever is in that head of yours now. Before you’re ready.
Check out this documentary on Richard Branson: