There are a few adjectives that come to mind when I think of Sir Richard Branson – brash, flamboyant, eccentric.
I was therefore unprepared for Branson’s humility in Screw Business as Usual, describing why it is essential modern businesses rethink and re-evaluate their current business practices.
Rather than focusing on his financial achievements in the business world, he highlights how he has promoted sustainability and humanity.
An example is business venture Mates in 1987. Mates sold affordable contraceptives during the height of the HIV/AIDS crisis, and Branson managed to convince the BBC to advertise the product on-air. Branson says this was less about turning a profit and more about tackling the epidemic.
Another area Branson focuses on is world poverty – he discusses Virgin's efforts to combat this and how other businesses can too. This is one of the book's major key themes and one he clearly harbours a fierce passion about.
Branson also stresses the importance of investing in entrepreneurs and the next generation of business leaders, of investing in the future of the company and most importantly of tapping into every resource possible.
Screw Business as Usual is informative, enjoyable and incredibly insightful. The reader is transported into Branson’s private world and treated as an old friend – he shares memories of various business ventures, travels, the friends he has made, and memories from his married life.
Perfect for: the corporate looking to expand their business or increase sustainable business practices; the eco-warrior looking for an influential and successful person promoting similar ideas and values; and finally your average Joe who is looking for an enjoyable (non-fiction) read.
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