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30 Jun 2011

Richard Branson's Top Tips for Entrepreneurs - Virgin Media Pioneers

When Richard met Dave McQueen

My friend Dave McQueen of Magnificent Minds had the privileged this month of taking a small lucky group of young entrepreneurs off to meet their hero Richard Branson.

Below are the insights that he shared and his final round up of top tips, to see the full video please click here.


  • When building a business from scratch in the early years you have to fight for survival - 9/10 businesses collapse - so do EVERYTHING that you can to survive for the first 3 years

  • Some people build specialist small businesses - true entrepreneurs look to talk to a large audience, try new things and say YES to opportunities

  • As business leaders the MOST important lesson is to LISTEN LISTEN LISTEN and DRAW OUT from people their talents, creativity and ideas - sounds to me like Richard is recommending that leaders are COACHING LEADERS

  • Brand - get the right PRODUCT and REPUTATION - MOTIVATE people - make them feel PRIDE and BELIEVE in what you do - have FUN and do it with a SMILE on your face

  • Richards Top 3 Tips

  • If you are starting a business make sure that you are MAKING A DIFFERENCE to peoples lives and SHAPING an industry

  • Get the right PEOPLE, MOTIVATE them, PRAISE them don't CRITICISE, you want HAPPY staff

  • Marketing and Brand - get on the front pages of the newspapers, get yourself known, seen and recognised, then people will start buying your products

  • 1 Jun 2011

    The KidsCo Pioneers

    Following the success of the first ever KidsCo, Embercome and Ministry of Entrepreneurship young leaders programme, I want to share my personal reflections and as the saying goes a picture paints a thousand words and so lots of pics.

    The team left on Friday and here is the personal reflection and diary entry that I made.

    I've completed one of the proudest weeks of my life having co-designed, delivered and made happen the inspiring leadership course for 11 young pioneers and leaders of the future.

    I could not have foreseen how amazing the week would unfold, even if I believed that it had the potential. The level of energy, drive and commitment that has been shown by the 'pioneers' was inspiring and profound. The courage, humility and depth displayed by this special group was simply wonderful.

    The stories that they have carried with them all of their lives are incredibly sad, authentic, challenging and often difficult in equal measure for many of them. They have had to build a inner resolve, resilience and sense of self love as for many it was rarely a given in their lives to date.

    Whilst this was their truth on entering the Embercombe bubble I feel safe in the knowledge that this week has given them all the opportunity to develop their inner landscape, to find dignity, a sense of pride and a deeper understanding and knowledge that they are unique, special, talented and loved. I look forward to seeing how they take into practice the leadership lessons that they have all learnt over the course of this week and role model these in their real worlds away from Embercombe and eventually KidsCo.

    Really proud to say that 7 of the young people who attended this course were awarded 50% scholarships towards their Gambi trip in November where they will have the opportunity to make a difference in someone else's life, whilst further enhancing their personal leadership style.

    Congrats to the pioneers who helped shape this magical course!

    All the best.



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