Maverick Miles & Musings
It’s only a few days until our next Necker Island experience with Sir Richard Branson. I’m excited to see so many members coming in for the Beach Party. This is the first year we have allowed members onto the island for a special day together and hopefully it’ll be an annual tradition!
There’s always quite a bit of Maverick mischief and mayhem on the island so be on the look-out for some Maverick moments in the next newsletter I’ll report back on.
Without question, one of my biggest business and entrepreneurial heroes is Sir Richard Branson. Really everything; from the way he runs multiple companies to his own sense of adventure.
I’ve now had the amazing good fortune to spend approximately four weeks with Richard, where I have observed how he behaves in different situations and how he answers the variety of questions we throw at him.
Q&A with Richard:
Below are a few of the topics and answers from my private notes (doodles included at no extra charge):
On Children and Family:
Give them tons of love and time. As you get older, you realize you’ll leave behind your children and that’s your legacy.
Take a longer holiday with them. Work a bit but make sure you’re with them.
Don’t give your kids an excess of spending money and crazy gifts.
No need for you to have to work from office. Find a place for your kids to bring their friends (i.e. Necker)
On what separates success from extreme success?
Great motivator of people/find extremely good people
Bold, brave and willing to try things.
Don’t be afraid of failure but protect against a catastrophic failure. (i.e. Virgin Group has 300+ companies so some will decline others will rise based on the economy, marketplace conditions, etc)
Be a person that says “YES” instead of “No”
On what he would want written on his gravestone
He made a difference.
I spent the first half of my life building companies and the 2nd half making a difference. Responsibility comes with that success.
If you’re going to make a difference – you’ve got to work hard at making that difference.
On working with others
Get great people and give them extreme freedom.
In the short run it may be difficult and you may even lose money but it gives you freedom for bigger things.
Didn’t do the obvious. Give people a second chance instead of firing them.
On the first things you think about in the morning
Find time to get body fit and healthy (i.e. swim, kite-board, etc in the morning). This gives the feeling like you can achieve anything.
On what’s the difference between a millionaire and a billionaire?
Keep the same values.
Keep being the 20 year-old who is hungry.
Focus makes sense for some people – managerial thinking. But for entrepreneurs it’s difficult to stay with one thing.
You must be good at delegating to others who run business.
Make sure you leave a company that isn’t damaged upon you leaving it.
Being an adventurer and an entrepreneur is not that different.
On running one company vs. multiple
At an early age, I found people who were better at running my business than me. Took time to find them. Worth taking a knock to your profits to find that person.
Don’t second-guess them. Want to keep getting yourself out of the business. Time to go think.
Very quickly find someone good or better than you to run new venture.
Each Virgin company stands or falls on their own accord.
There must be a natural reason for expansion of the brand.
Record company -> Merchandising -> Management of artists -> Distribution -> Club ownership
Random Richard Quotes:
“Partying is part of you being the boss. Put a notebook in your pocket during the party and listen to what your team is telling you.”
“Don’t use a vision board – go by instinct.”
I love the way Richard says “YES” to projects and adventures. While on Necker the second time around, Tellman Knudson asked him to marry off his long-term girlfriend, Jodie, and him. The impromptu wedding was set-up with Richard being Tellman’s best man. I’ve also watched Richard say “yes” to new business projects pitched his way over a rum punch.
What’s more, I’ve really picked up on how Richard’s fingerprints are prominent on so many of his businesses. That culture of being “cheeky” is found throughout. In fact, I had the chance to read a branding manual for Virgin group and that’s exactly what they talk about.
Another point I saw in action was his social consciousness. Founding Virgin Unite by using the power of entrepreneurship and innovative thinking to solve societal problems has been inspiring. In fact, the last time we were on Necker I wrote down this quote he said that has stuck with me, “If you are going to make a difference you have to work hard at making a difference.” Richard’s latest book “Screw Business as Usual” really covers a lot of this thinking.
I’m incredibly proud of our trips because to date, we’ve raised over $700,000.00 for Virgin Unite, the non-profit arm of the Virgin companies. Over the years we’ve had parts of these funds go to support brand new programs that help teach entrepreneurial skills to underprivileged youth across the U.S. It also supports the Branson School of Entrepreneurship in South Africa.
Referral Contest Update:
And finally a reminder about something really cool we mentioned at the Pre-day:
Want to Make You & Your Business A Little More Famous? Get Featured in USA Today with a Cool Maverick Contest
As an advocate for Maverick1000 we want to reward you with something really extraordinary…
Imagine getting yourself or your business featured in the USA Today newspaper. With a circulation of nearly 2 million daily readers you’ll be getting a ton of exposure and additional credibility.
How does it work? It’s easy.
All you have to do is refer your friends or colleagues you think are a good fit for Maverick1000 membership.
There are 2 easy ways to win:
We’ve secured an entire half page in USAToday for an upcoming print, and we’re going to divide up the space for the winners. (In case you’re wondering a half page in USA Today would set you back a stout $81,500!)
Grand Prize Winner #1 – 1/3 Page Feature Article: We’ll be interviewing you to create an editorial piece that will feature you or your business. We’ll work together to make sure the article hits all the high points you want covered for excellent exposure (now and in the future since you can reprint on your site, mention for credibility, etc.)
The Grand Prize is pretty simple – if you bring in the most new members during the contest you win. And if there’s a tie, we’ll hold a run-off for the winner.
Winner #2: 1/4 Page Feature Article: Everyone gets their shot at “15-Minutes of Fame” by just referring one new member. For every new member you refer, you will be entered into a drawing to win the ¼ page article inside USA Today. So the more members you bring in, the more chances you’ll have to win!
Your Friends & Colleagues Can Win Too!
We want to reward the new members you bring in. So every new Maverick1000 member that’s referred in – they will automatically be entered into a random draw to win a featured spot in the ad! We’ll make 4 of these spots available. Not only do you get the chance to change their lives, but you get to help give them some incredible exposure in the process.
Here’s Where to Send Your Referrals:
A personal endorsement and recommendation goes a long way. If you have someone you believe is Maverick material, send your referrals over to http://www.Maverick1000.com or give them the special referral coin.
Once there, they will need to enter in your name in order to have the lead registered back to you. Or if you prefer, you can email Rose at Rose@maverick1000.com and she can help get your prospective new member all taken care of.
The contest will run from January 1 – May 31, 2013. (Good news is any previous referrals from this year count.) Remember, the higher caliber the people you refer – the stronger and more powerful the entire Maverick network becomes!
If you have a prospective member who’d like to experience what Maverick1000 is all about, you can invite them to the May 15-17th 3X Multiplier Retreat in Chicago. (Chicago is shaping up to be really incredible! Lots of surprises in store for you guys and it’s not too late to upgrade to include the Retreats in your membership.) If you you have any questions about registering for Chicago, contact Sophia at firstname.lastname@example.org.
See you soon!