in , ,

100 inspiring quotes by Richard Branson on life, success, family and business

“Respect is how to treat everyone, not just those you want to impress,” Richard Branson told us. I was fortunate to be part of a small group of entrepreneurs visiting the British entrepreneur’s home on his private island.

What struck me over the course of the 5 days I spent with Branson was how well he treated everyone on the island. It made sense that he treated the visiting group well. However, he treated all of his staff with the same level of respect.

He seemed to be to be a truly humble person with clear values on how to live a good life. He also loves to have a good time, as you can see with the costume he chose below for one of our dress-up parties.

Branson’s success speaks for itself. He has created the Virgin group of companies, written a number of bestselling books and broken several world records.

I have put together 100 of the most inspiring quotes by Branson, broken into sections on living a life of integrity, the importance of family, achieving success in life, turning ideas into reality and building a business.

Together, these quotes are a great entry point to understanding the mindset of a brilliant entrepreneur who has lived his life to the full.

Richard Branson quotes on living a life full of integrity

“Please be polite. Nothing in life should erode the habit of saying thank you to people or praising them.” – Richard Branson

“Respect is how to treat everyone, not just those you want to impress.” – Richard Branson

“There is no greater thing you can do with your life and your work than follow your passions – in a way that serves the world and you.” – Richard Branson

“Listen. Take the best. Leave the rest.” – Richard Branson

“Don’t become a slave to technology – manage your phone, don’t let it manage you.” – Richard Branson

“Engage your emotions at work. Your instincts and emotions are there to help you.” – Richard Branson

“Life is a series of ups and clowns. Make it worth your wild!” – Richard Branson

“Remember it’s OK to be yourself.” – Richard Branson

“Take a chance. It’s the best way to test yourself. Have fun and push boundaries.” – Richard Branson

“Once a changemaker, always a changemaker but only a few swim against the tide.” – Richard Branson

“The balloons only have one life and the only way of finding out whether they work is to attempt to fly around the world.” – Richard Branson

“Right now I’m just delighted to be alive and to have had a nice long bath.” – Richard Branson

“I think it’s quite great to set yourself a big challenge, and then you’ve got another reason for keeping fit.” – Richard Branson

“My general attitude to life is to enjoy every minute of every day. I never do anything with a feeling of, ‘Oh God, I’ve got to do this today.” – Richard Branson

“Ridiculous yachts and private planes and big limousines won’t make people enjoy life more, and it sends out terrible messages to the people who work for them. It would be so much better if that money was spent in Africa – and it’s about getting a balance.” – Richard Branson

“And obviously, from our own personal point of view, the principal challenge is a personal challenge.” – Richard Branson

“Being a good listener is absolutely critical to being a good leader; you have to listen to the people who are on the front line.” – Richard Branson

“When I was a kid, I had a tendency to criticize. But when I did, my mum would whisk me off to the bathroom to stand in front of a mirror. Ten minutes, never less. To think about how criticism is a poor reflection on the one who criticizes.” – Richard Branson

“The true cost to the world of a burger is far greater than the money you hand over to buy it.” – Richard Branson

“Material things are delightful, but they’re not important.” – Richard Branson

“We’re one of the only animals in the world that don’t really think of ourselves as animals, but we are animals, and we must respect our fellow animals.” – Richard Branson

Richard Branson on making a difference in the world

“I’ve never gone into business to make money. Every Virgin product and service has been made into a reality to make a positive difference in people’s lives. And by focusing on the happiness of our customers, we have been able to build a successful group of companies.” – Richard Branson

“Capitalism has proven to be the only system that works, but the problem with capitalism is that extreme wealth ends up in the hands of a few people.” – Richard Branson

“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.” – Richard Branson

“There’s no point in starting a business unless you’re going to make a dramatic difference to other people’s lives. So if you’ve got an idea that’s gonna make a big difference to other people’s lives, then just get on and do it.” – Richard Branson

Richard Branson quotes on preserving the environment

“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.” – Richard Branson

“I’ve been very passionate about renewable energy for many years, particularly solar energy and its capacity to bring abundant clean, sustainable energy to millions around the globe.” – Richard Branson

“We need every person on Earth to acknowledge that climate change is real and encourage each other and our leaders to address the challenge.” – Richard Branson

“Taking bold action on climate change simply makes good business sense. It’s also the right thing to do for people and the planet. Setting a net-zero GHG emissions target by 2050 will drive innovation, grow jobs, build prosperity, and secure a better world for what will soon be 9 billion people.” – Richard Branson

“At Virgin, we have always backed the power of the entrepreneur and inventor to find solutions to tricky problems. Why should climate change and the battle against carbon be any different?” – Richard Branson

Richard Branson quotes on the importance of family

“My mother was determined to make us independent. When I was four years old, she stopped the car a few miles from our house and made me find my own way home across the fields. I got hopelessly lost.” –Richard Branson

“I’ve been very lucky. I come from a very close family.” – Richard Branson

“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.” – Richard Branson

“I always find the time to exercise – kitesurfing, tennis or cycling – and to spend time with my loved ones.” – Richard Branson

“Those who know me know I’m passionate about lists, and top of my list of priorities is my family. My wife Joan and I do not consider our legacy to our children to be wealth or fame but the opportunity to pursue happiness by following their own path.” – Richard Branson

Richard Branson quotes on achieving success in life

“My definition of success? The more you’re actively and practically engaged, the more successful you will feel.” – Richard Branson

“Screw it. Let’s do it.” – Richard Branson

“You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.” – Richard Branson

“If you don’t succeed at first, there’s no need for the F word (Failure). Pick yourself up and try, try again.” – Richard Branson

“Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again.” – Richard Branson

“Chance favors the prepared mind. The more you practice, luckier you become.” – Richard Branson

“Life is a hell of a lot more fun if you say yes rather than no.” – Richard Branson

“For a successful entrepreneur it can mean extreme wealth. But with extreme wealth comes extreme responsibility. And the responsibility for me is to invest in creating new businesses, create jobs, employ people, and to put money aside to tackle issues where we can make a difference.” – Richard Branson

“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.” – Richard Branson

“Fun is one of the most important – and underrated – ingredients in any successful venture. If you’re not having fun, then it’s probably time to call it quits and try something else.” – Richard Branson

“My attitude has always been, if you fall flat on your face, at least you’re moving forward. All you have to do is get back up and try again.” – Richard Branson

“Overcoming fear is the first step to success for entrepreneurs. The winners all exemplify that, and the hard work and commitment they have shown underlines what is needed to set up a business.” – Richard Branson

“My interest in life comes from setting myself huge, apparently unachievable challenges and trying to rise above them.” – Richard Branson

“Too many people measure how successful they are by how much money they make or the people that they associate with. In my opinion, true success should be measured by how happy you are.” – Richard Branson

“Treat failure as a lesson on how not to approach achieving a goal, and then use that learning to improve your chances of success when you try again. Failure is only the end if you decide to stop.” – Richard Branson

“It’s a common misconception that money is every entrepreneur’s metric for success. It’s not, and nor should it be.” – Richard Branson

“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!” – Richard Branson

“A passionate belief in your business and personal objectives can make all the difference between success and failure. If you aren’t proud of what you’re doing, why should anybody else be?” – Richard Branson

“I’m not the sort of person who gives up on things. The first time we crossed the Atlantic in the balloon, it crashed, and we went on and did the Pacific. First time we crossed the Atlantic in a boat, it sank, and we went on and got the record. So, generally speaking, we will pick ourselves up, brush ourselves down, and carry on.” – Richard Branson

Richard Branson quotes on turning an idea into reality

“When you’re first thinking through an idea, it’s important not to get bogged down in complexity. Thinking simply and clearly, is hard to do.” – Richard Branson

“If you don’t have time for the small things, you won’t have time for the big things.” – Richard Branson

“Communication: the thing humans forgot when we invented words.” – Richard Branson

“If you spot an opportunity and are really excited by it, throw yourself into it with everything you’ve got.” – Richard Branson

“If you’re hurt, lick your wound and get up again. If you’ve given it your absolute best, it’s time to move forward.” – Richard Branson

“Education doesn’t just take place in stuffy classrooms and university buildings, it can happen everywhere, every day to every person.” – Richard Branson

“The best way of learning about anything is by doing.” – Richard Branson

“If you want swashbuckling action in your life, become an entrepreneur and give it a go.” –Richard Branson

“I was dyslexic, I had no understanding of schoolwork whatsoever. I certainly would have failed IQ tests. And it was one of the reasons I left school when I was 15 years old. And if I’m not interested in something, I don’t grasp it.” – Richard Branson

“I wanted to be an editor or a journalist, I wasn’t really interested in being an entrepreneur, but I soon found I had to become an entrepreneur in order to keep my magazine going.” – Richard Branson

“You never know with these things when you’re trying something new what can happen. This is all experimental.” – Richard Branson

“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.” – Richard Branson

Richard Branson quotes on building a business

“Happiness is the secret ingredient for successful businesses. If you have a happy company it will be invincible.” – Richard Branson

“Building a business is not rocket science, it’s about having a great idea and seeing it through with integrity.” – Richard Branson

“Learn from failure. If you are an entrepreneur and your first venture wasn’t a success, welcome to the club!” – Richard Branson

“Whatever business you are in, every company can shoot for the start in their own way.” –Richard Branson

“Cover the downside.” – Richard Branson

“Your company should act as a springboard for ambitious employees, not a set of shackles.” –Richard Branson

“Entrepreneurial business favors the open mind. It favors people whose optimism drives them to prepare for many possible futures, pretty much purely for the joy of doing so.” – Richard Branson

“You’ve got to take risks if you’re going to succeed. I would much rather ask forgiveness than permission.” – Richard Branson

“Entrepreneurship is about turning what excites you in life into capital, so that you can do more of it and move forward with it.” – Richard Branson

“A business has to be involving, it has to be fun, and it has to exercise your creative instincts.” –Richard Branson

“I believe in benevolent dictatorship provided I am the dictator.” – Richard Branson

“Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” –Richard Branson

“You can’t do a good business with a bad person. Find the right people to work with and you can’t go wrong.” – Richard Branson

“Don’t think what’s the cheapest way to do it or what’s the fastest way to do it…think ‘what’s the most amazing way to do it’.” – Richard Branson

“The music industry is a strange combination of having real and intangible assets: pop bands are brand names in themselves, and at a given stage in their careers their name alone can practically guarantee hit records.” – Richard Branson

“To me, business isn’t about wearing suits or pleasing stockholders. It’s about being true to yourself, your ideas and focusing on the essentials.” – Richard Branson

“So I’ve seen life as one long learning process. And if I see – you know, if I fly on somebody else’s airline and find the experience is not a pleasant one, which it wasn’t in – 21 years ago, then I’d think, well, you know, maybe I can create the kind of airline that I’d like to fly on.” – Richard Branson

“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.” – Richard Branson

“And you know, I’ve had great fun turning quite a lot of different industries on their head and making sure those industries will never be the same again, because Virgin went in and took them on.” – Richard Branson

“Through the right people focusing on the right things, we can, in time, get on top of a lot if not most of the problems of this world. And that’s what a number of us are trying to do.” – Richard Branson

“Business opportunities are like buses, there’s always another one coming.” – Richard Branson

“One thing is certain in business. You and everyone around you will make mistakes.” – Richard Branson

“From my very first day as an entrepreneur, I’ve felt the only mission worth pursuing in business is to make people’s lives better.” – Richard Branson

“By putting the employee first, the customer effectively comes first by default, and in the end, the shareholder comes first by default as well.” – Richard Branson

“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.” – Richard Branson

“All you have in business is your reputation – so it’s very important that you keep your word.” – Richard Branson

“From a young age, I learned to focus on the things I was good at and delegate to others what I was not good at. That’s how Virgin is run. Fantastic people throughout the Virgin Group run our businesses, allowing me to think creatively and strategically.” – Richard Branson

“You should not build your customer service system on the premise that your organisation will never question the whims of your clients.” – Richard Branson

“Most people would assume my business success, and the wealth that comes with it, have brought me happiness. But I know I am successful, wealthy, and connected because I am happy.” – Richard Branson

“A good leader doesn’t get stuck behind a desk.” – Richard Branson

“A complaint is a chance to turn a customer into a lifelong friend. I say that seriously, not as some press release baloney.” – Richard Branson

“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.” – Richard Branson

“In business, if you realize you’ve made a bad decision, you change it.” – Richard Branson

“The art of delegation is one of the key skills any entrepreneur must master.” – Richard Branson

“Starting your own business isn’t just a job – it’s a way of life.” – Richard Branson

“If you want to be more productive, then start at the start: get there on time. Whether it is a meeting, a flight, an appointment or a date, it’s important to ensure you are there when you say you will be there. This may feel like an old-fashioned tip to give, but it has served me well for five decades in business.” – Richard Branson

“When I started Virgin from a basement in west London, there was no great plan or strategy. I didn’t set out to build a business empire… For me, building a business is all about doing something to be proud of, bringing talented people together and creating something that’s going to make a real difference to other people’s lives.” – Richard Branson

“When hiring somebody, I never ask to see a curriculum vitae. I feel that since I didn’t have one myself, it would be a bit presumptuous to ask to see anyone else’s.” – Richard Branson

NOW WATCH: Why I started this YouTube channel in 2018

NOW READ: 20 inspirational Warren Buffett quotes about building a successful career

We have a new salon playing for a limited time

Do you want to live your life with purpose and meaning, but you struggle to figure out how to do this without needing to completely change your life in the process?

Most modern day approaches to living with purpose and meaning involve trying to visualize a different life for yourself.

The problem is that doing this distracts you from the life you're already living right now.

In this free salon, Ideapod founder Justin Brown shares a very different approach to aligning with your purpose and creating meaning in your life, without needing to drastically change your life.

Check it out:

How to Live with Purpose and Meaning, Without Turning Your Life Upside Down

Be the first to comment on this article at Ideapod Discussions

Written by Justin Brown

I'm the CEO and co-founder of Ideapod, a platform for people to connect around ideas. I'm passionate about people thinking for themselves, especially in an age of information overload.

20 powerful quotes by Mooji that will help you understand his key ideas

Emotionally unavailable men: 9 undeniable signs