Leadership of Richard Branson Virgin Group

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Sir Richard Branson dropped out of school as a teenager and created his own magazine. That led to helping to cofound the Virgin record store. Nearly 50 years later, Branson is the billionaire chair of the Virgin Group and has overseen approximately 500 companies, with his brand currently on somewhere between 200 and 300 of them (Feloni, 2015). These companies include: Virgin Atlantic Airways, Virgin Holidays, Virgin Rail, The Virgin Retail Group, and a record label. His leadership style seems to be unconventional to most but it is what he says has contributed to the success that he has had in operating in multiple industries.

Branson describes his leadership style as a rule breaker. According to Branson, he never learned the rules. More so, changing the game is at the core of what his company stands for, and therefore the company culture recognizes that rules were meant to be broken. Although some may consider his style as unconventional, his approach promotes a hands-off strategy to management that encourages employees to make personal decisions. Failure is taken as an indication that people are stretching themselves. His leadership style is associated with creating great leaders in any setting.

According to Branson, listening is one key trait at Virgin. Listening enables the workforce to learn from one another and from the marketplace. Learning from mistakes is also strass by Richard Branson. Through listening, Branson can learn much from both his employees and guests.

Richard also considers learning and leadership inseparable. Although most of the company’s success is associated with him, he attributes the success from working and learning with the most inspiring and inspired persons. Lastly, he attributes his success in enjoying what he does. He recognizes that running a business involves long working hours and tough decisions and therefore if one doesn’t appreciate what they do, then the business has high.

Branson maintains a healthy relationship with every person involved in the company. He treats his employees as equals and a family with respect. Richard welcomes feedback and suggestions from his employees in addition to encouraging his employees to become creative. This stems from his belief that leaders should be able to work and learn from others within the organization. His organization lacks any established procedures on how things should be conducted and therefore the company works on a flat non-hierarchical framework. Instead, the organization is made up of teams. This approach ensures that the workforce has the liberty to work with minimal interference from upper management..

The company’s leadership style is, therefore, considered democratic and participative. Richard believes in putting his employees first and engaging them in decision making. He feels in the art of delegation, finding the right people and offering them the liberty and drive to flourish on their own (Preston, 2017). Again, Mr. Branson is a big proponent of being able to learn from others within the organization as well as being able to give them directives.

Richard Branson understands that happy employees translate to a more successful brand. Research indicates that satisfied employees are more productive than unhappy ones. The Virgin Company culture guarantees employees satisfaction and comfort which in turn results to a higher quality motivated workforce.

Branson is likely to motivate employees by offering them a flexible working schedule. Virgin introduced a flexible working policy whereby employees are allowed to work from wherever they want and whenever they want. Many businesses argue that maintaining a flexible working schedule increases employee motivation and productivity. I think this approach would work for any organizational setting since employees feel the organization trusts them and therefore boosts their satisfaction and productivity. Offering a flexible working schedule removes the daily strainers that employees encounter both in professional and personal life meaning their focus is purely on their work (Chris, 2015). Employees would be able to make sure their obligations outside of work are handled before devoting the rest of their energy to the tasks of the company.

Another way Branson is likely to motivate employees is by offering training. Virgin offers regular training sessions for its employees. I think this strategy would work for any organizational setting since training is associated with increased motivation. Training creates excitement among employees and also develops a better understanding of a brand. Training also gives employees confidence that the organization is doing whatever it can to make sure that are well informed to help keep them productive. Offering training shows employees that the organization is concerned about their career development and that the organization is willing to assist them to improve.

Branson’s ability to eloquent and communicate his vision for employees and stakeholders is effective and efficient. Branson claims that the heart that unites all companies under the Virgin brand is a dedication for fun. He recommends disintegrating barriers in the corporate hierarchy through company events such as charities to keep employees comfortable and open to share ideas. Richard is known for pushing himself to do what is best for his employees and the company. He is also known for going out of his way to grab lunch for his employees or having coffee with someone in the industry.

Branson recognizes that no one can rise through the ranks without actively building relationships in person. Richard also assesses the ability to articulate and communicate his vision by breaking corporate barriers. Branson does not recognize the existence of obstacles between the levels of personnel since he thinks that a CEO should always bear in mind that their team defines them.

Leadership is one of the primary conditions for organizational success. Research has however established that sometimes organizations can excel even without the top-rated leadership if they have a culture that sustains a high level of employee engagement. Therefore to understand what matters to the organizational success, it is essential to determine the extent that leadership has contributed. This makes measurement of leadership effectiveness a very necessary evaluation tool.

Based on that, I would say Branson’s leadership style is definitely a good fit, as it has allowed the company to expand in lots of endeavors. He encourages employee engagement in all facets of the business that the Virgin Group operates in. He encourages managers to be albe to delegate duties to others to give themselves the ability to focus on other things to further themselves and the company. This in turn gives others the ability to show that they can be trusted to lead current and future endeavors of the Virgin Group.

Madanchian et al. (2017) suggests that effective leadership affects an organization’s outcomes. Identifying leadership features is critical to enhancing leader effectiveness and organizational performance. Leadership effectiveness, in this case, is considered as an outcome when individuals in leadership positions can impact a group to perform their roles with positive organizational outcomes. The most common outcome of evaluating an effective leader is by examining the consequences of the leaders’ actions. Dhar and Mishra (2001) imply that a leader’s ability to make effective group processes, cohesiveness, collaboration, motivation and efficiency of decision making are indicators of leader effectiveness. I would use features such as the ability to inspire a shared vision, model the way for others, foster collaboration, challenge the status quo and encourage team members.

I would consider working under this type of leader since he promotes a free flow of ideas. This type of leader seeks out opinions from others to assist in making informed decisions. I would also work under him since his leadership style promotes an honest and open communication between everyone within the organization. Under such leadership, even when dealing with dissenting opinions, the leaders listen and take every opinion into account. This allows for everyone in the company to feel as if their opinion matters and is taken into consideration. It would also give all employees a sense of belonging, in turn increasing employee satisfaction and morale within the organization. Individuals under this type of leader can also take comfort in knowing that they don’t have to worry about going through a multitude of channels to get their ideas heard. This allows for people to feel as if they have the ability to thrive and advance quickly in this type of setting.

Global leaders refer to a class of emerging professionals that are adept at operating international and multicultural contexts. A global leader possesses identifiable traits and has a natural curiosity regarding the world and interest in people that are different from themselves. This interest inspires visionary initiatives that go beyond national boundaries. Moreover, they understand that individual prosperity is dependent on others and that they play a role in transforming the societies they operate (Lexicon, n.d). I think Branson is a global leader since he has launched more than 350 entrepreneurial initiatives dealing in a wide variety of products and services in different sectors. Also, Virgin is based in more than 50 countries.

Cite this paper

Leadership of Richard Branson Virgin Group. (2022, Jan 30). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/leadership-of-richard-branson-virgin-group/

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