Posts Tagged ‘Leadership’

What I Learned from Richard Branson…

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

Robin Sharma and Richard BransonI hope you’re great! Just finished an event with Richard Branson in Bucharest (a city known as the “Paris of The East”) and wanted to share my takeaways with you to help you take your career and life to its next level of wow.

Richard was polite and larger than life. A pleasure to share time with. And a man who clearly adores all he does. I encourage you to read his autobiography “Losing My Virginity” as well as his book “Business Stripped Bare” if you haven’t gone through them yet. Uber-inspiring. For people who want to become Remarkable Entrepreneurs – and express their absolute best.

Anyway, I’ll get right into some of my observations as well as the ideas we discussed. Please don’t underestimate the power of these simple ideas – superbly executed, they yield brilliant results.

1. Politeness Matters. As mentioned, Richard Branson was unfailingly polite. He mentioned to me that when he was a kid, if he criticized someone, his mother would make him stand in front of the mirror at home and say, “what you’re seeing in others is really what you’re seeing in yourself. So look in the mirror.” This educated him on the key leadership habit of looking for – and then encouraging – the gifts and talents within other people.

2. Be Massively Independent. When Richard was just four years old, his mother stopped her car and instructed him to find his own way home, over many miles. When he was about 12, she told him to cycle 100 miles to Bournemouth alone, to visit a relative. He expressed to me that these childhood experiences were his mother’s way of growing his self-reliance. And building the invincible inner core that has served him so well as an entrepreneur.

3. Screw It – Just Do It. What makes a great company (and great life) isn’t so much the inspiring idea as the flawless execution around the big idea. As Edison once said: “Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.” Richard shared that much of his success came from his philosophy to disregard the naysayers and those telling him his dream was impossible and just get the dream done. (Please remember: the impossible is generally just the untried). This is a man with a giant bias towards action.

4. Lavish Praise on People. I know you know this: the bigger the dream, the more important the team. Having worked with many of the best entrepreneurs in the world, I’ve learned that every single one of them gets that you can’t do it alone. Beautiful to have a brave vision. But the real key is finding the genius-level talent to get that vision delivered into reality. And if all you know how to surround yourself with is mediocre people, you’re destined to experience mediocre results. Richard is brilliant at finding the right people that bring his targets of opportunity to life. And he confirmed that once they are on his team, “I lavish them with praise.” Our takeaway: relentlessly celebrate+develop+inspire your people.

5. Be a Radical Innovator. When he was a young entrepreneur with nothing more than the little college newspaper THE STUDENT, he still showed a lust for disregarding all the rules. He challenged the status quo. And disrupted what was considered normal. An example: he somehow was able to get John Lennon to do an original piece of music for him. He then put the song on a special disc and packaged it into the newspaper, right next to the interview he’d done on the rock ‘n roll legend. At Virgin Records, he recruited the Sex Pistols and reinvented a whole category of music. At Virgin Atlantic, he gave passengers massages on airplanes and dropped them home in limos. And with Virgin Galactic, he’s taking people into space. Very cool. Fantastically bold.

At the Bucharest meeting, he told the 2500+ people in the concert hall that “sometime in your lifetime, every one of you will have visited other parts of the universe.” And I believe it.

6. Build Your Brand. Richard Branson gets branding. He knows what he – and the Virgin name – stands for. Fun. Good Value. Strong customer service. And so at every possible opportunity, he evangelizes all it stands for. Oh, and he’s also clearly a master of getting attention. From hot air balloon adventures that made global news to showing up at a press conference nearly naked to promote Virgin mobile, this Remarkable Entrepreneur gets the value of owning a share of our brain cells.

7. Find Your Necker Island. Get this: Branson paid roughly $300,000 for his beloved Necker Island. He and his then girlfriend Joan were visiting the Caribbean on a getaway. They fell in love with Necker – but it was about $4,000,000. But he wouldn’t give up (let’s never discount the power of a ridiculous amount of persistence around your most closely loved goals). A few months later, the owner needed cash. Branson made his deeply discounted offer. It has served as his retreat away from the world for many years. Here’s the real point: in the world of so much noise and complexity, find your personal retreat (even if it’s an aged wooded bench in a public garden) where you can withdraw to think+create+renew+rest.

8. Lucky Wins. We make luck. Enough said.

9. Don’t Do It If It’s Not Fun. Branson wears a smile pretty much all the time. He laughs naturally. And radiates happiness. Zero doubt: he loves his life – and all that’s in it (George Clooney said he’d swap his life for Richard Branson’s – much to the delight of Richard’s wife). The lesson for us: life’s just too short to be doing work that destroys your soul. This is the best time in the history of the world to become an entrepreneur. Find work you adore. And get busy changing the world with it.

10. With Gifts Come Responsibilities. OK, so Richard Branson’s one of the richest people on the planet. But he gets that being good trumps shiny toys. He mentioned to me that, “with great wealth comes great responsibility.” And so he’s spending a lot of his days evangelizing Virgin Unite, his foundation that helps kids in need. Reminds me of what my amazing father taught me – using the words of the great poet Tagore – growing up: “Robin, when you were born, you cried while the world rejoiced. Son, live your life in such a way that when you die, the world cries while you rejoice.”

So there you go. What the iconic Richard Branson shared with me on a sunny Wednesday in Bucharest. I hope the lessons also serve you well.

Robin Sharma

P.S. If you want to learn exactly how the best entrepreneurs in the world get their results in these uncertain times and grow the business of your dreams, I’d love for you to join me June 2+3 at The Remarkable Entrepreneur SuperConference in Toronto, Canada. There are just a few seats left so I strongly encourage you to grab a seat while you still can. Here are the details: http://www.theremarkableentrepreneur.com

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My Top 10 Blog Posts of 2011

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

Gratitude. That’s how I feel about your support of my work this past year. My team and I have pulled out my 10 most popular blog posts from the past twelve months and I’ve listed them below.

Read them. Reflect on them. Debate them. Enjoy them!

Top 10 Blog Posts of 2011

1) The 50 New Rules of Work (17.9K Shares)
The global economy is in a state of acute disruption. Competition has never been more fierce. Consumers have never been so well-informed and loudly demanding. And what worked yesterday just might be obsolete today. But this time is also a great time, for the astonishing few who are ready to show leadership. Leaders are at their absolute best during messy cycles versus during the easy ones. And messy cycles bring with them gorgeous opportunities. Click here to read more…

2) You Can’t Lead In Fear (7465 Shares)
Fear ruins more bright lives than you might imagine. Each of us, by virtue of our very human nature, has the potential to Lead Without A Title and achieve great things that elevate everyone around us by our model of possibility. But the chattering voice of fear in our heads stops us from playing big. Click here to read more…

3) My 3 Best Keys To Super Productivity (7382 Shares)
We live in an age of dramatic distraction. On an average day we spend up to 2.1 hours in distraction. To waste your time is to waste your life, talent and creativity. So in this video I share with you my 3 best keys to super productivity to help you play at your absolute best. Click here to watch the video…

4) The Saboteur: The Real Reason You Procrastinate (6135 Shares)
In this video I share with you an insight that will help you shatter your past performance. You’ll be able to strip-away from your life all the distractions and become one of the few productive people that gets great work done. Click here to watch the video…

5) Random Insights On Exceptionalism (5915 Shares)
I’m at 40,000 feet. Sunlight floods through the window. Flying home from beautiful Vancouver, Canada after a presentation to The Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) on game-changing moves that Remarkable Entrepreneurs are dedicated to. I do my best thinking on airplanes and wanted to download some random insights on leadership, business and living at world-class with you. Click here to read more…

6) 17 Tips to Double Your Productivity In 14 Days (5708 Shares)
One of the modules from “The Remarkable Entrepreneur SuperConference” that happens in June is on “Doubling Your Productivity in 30 Days”, based on my work with some of the most successful entrepreneurs in business. I wanted to share 17 of the tactics I’ve learned that I know will help you lean into your productive best in this age of dramatic distraction. Click here to read more…

7) The 8 Faces of Exceptionally Creative Leaders (5170 Shares)
If you’ve been following my work for a while, you know that my core belief is that the old model of leadership is dead and now, anyone in any organization on any part of the planet can show leadership. I’ve seen taxi drivers who display rare-air leadership along with school teachers + breakfast servers + construction workers. Work is changing. And we all can provoke impact and influence if we Lead Without a Title. But here’s the point of this piece: not only do each of us have the potential to be leaders – we each have the potential to be creative. Massively. Click here to read more…

8) 15 Ways To Do Your Best Work (4582 Shares)
Remember that a job is only just a job if all you see it as is a job. Don’t do your best work for the applause it generates but for the personal pride it delivers. In this article I share with you 15 game-changing ideas to doing your best work and playing at your absolute best. Click here to read more…

9) 5 One Minute Productivity Moves (4171 Shares)
In an effort to help you win the war against distraction and interruption I’ll give you “5 One Minute Productivity Tactics” to help you amp up your game and do your best work. 1. Have the courage to get great at saying “No Thanks” to any activities that don’t advance your priorities. Click here to read more…

10) Do What’s Most Difficult (4031 Shares)
Sam Keen had a great line, “You are caught by what you are running from.” Genius. We attempt to structure our lives to avoid our fears but that’s about as intelligent as straightening the deck chairs on the Titanic. The best way to overcome a fear is to face your fear. As a matter of fact, every time we do something we’ve been avoiding, we take back the power that seemingly scary or difficult thing had over us. Click here to read the rest…

Every good wish to you and your family for the holiday season – from me and my family.

Robin Sharma

P.S. Let’s keep the conversation going on my Facebook page. Just click here: http://www.facebook.com/theofficialrobinsharmapage

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Ask Robin – Episode 1

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

 

 


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Powerful Tactics to Lead Without a Title

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

Leadership TacticsIn many ways, the whole idea behind Leading Without a Title is the democratization of leadership. Yes, positions are important to the smooth running of any organization (whether that organization is a business or a community or a family). Having said that, the new model of leadership (leadership 2.0) is all about every single stakeholder showing leadership in the work they do. This is really all about distributed leadership. Every single person who works within a business, for example, owns the responsibility of showing leadership at their craft. Every single teammate is the CEO of their own small business unit called their job.

Tactic #1: If you can’t lead yourself, you can’t lead others. We have no business leading others into greatness if our own personal lives are a train-wreck. Being successful in the game of life precedes great leadership. Face whatever personal issues you’ve been avoiding head on and clean up on all fronts.

Tactic #2: Never make anyone feel as if there isn’t room in the life boat. No matter the mistake, no matter what mile a person is at on their road to mastery, always be ready and willing to throw a life line – lend a hand, offer insight, donate your time, run out for coffee. The winners understand that strengthening capacity at every level, in every person, is the way to win.

Tactic #3: Watch Invictus. Clint Eastwood’s excellent and entertaining reminder of great leadership. Morgan Freeman performs as Nelson Mandela. The film, teaches us how to eloquently execute astonishing acts of forgiveness, compassion and moving upward when circumstances and people hold the potential to yank you into victimhood.

Tactic #4: Stay Strong “secure your oxygen mask first before assisting others.” Do you know where your oxygen comes from? Routine challenging exercise, healthy eating habits, sleeping deeply, and doing what makes me feel alive and excited is my oxygen. It’s what keeps me strong.

Refuse the lifestyle, the habits and the circumstances that weaken you. Great leaders don’t just own their full potential on the floor or in the field; they claim their potential in all domains of their life. You can’t be great in one arena and mediocre in another. Mistrust will sniff you out and turn you in. Make it an immediate goal to get connected with your oxygen supply.

Keep Leading Without A Title.

Robin Sharma

P.S. To watch “The Leader Who Had No Title” video click here.

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Rules for The Remarkable

Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

Rules For The RemarkableOn a train from Lake Como to Rome. Was here to work on my next book. Amid deeply inspirational surroundings. And unforgettably delicious pasta.

Reflecting on what’s most important. For leadership. Business excellence. Human exceptionalism. Quickly wrote out these simple rules. Hope they are of value to you. And I pray you use them to build a better organization/life/world:

1. Give more than you take.

2. Be the most optimistic person you know.

3. Remember that manners matter.

4. If you’re not innovating, you’re on a descent into obsolescence.

5. Your work and personal life reflect your standards and self-worth.

6. Doing your best work is a core secret of sustained happiness. We spend most of our lives at work so why not aim for genius at it?

7. Business is about relationships. And if you don’t understand people, you don’t understand business.

8. Every moment in front of a customer is an opportunity to express your most important values. And to make a difference (another of the truths of happiness).

9. See your work as a craft, not just a job. And practice every day.

10. Remember, your physical fitness is directly tied to how successful you are at work.

11. Remember that whether you’re building a business or growing a family, you’re a creative artist.

12. Be the first to greet others vs waiting to be greeted (I learned this one from Nelson Mandela)

13. Use the language of leadership vs the phrases of victims (like “there’s a problem here” or “I have some bad news” or “I’m in trouble” or “this will never work” or “I’m always tired”).

14. Refuse to allow any form of mediocrity into any touchpoint of your life.

15. Enjoy possessions but don’t be owned by them.

16. Remember that blaming others is excusing yourself.

17. The fears you don’t face become your chains. (And every fear you embrace causes growth in your confidence and personal power…my new book “The Secret Letters from The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari” is all about how to achieve this).

18. A problem’s only a problem if you choose to process it as a problem.

19. Honor excellence.

20. Pursue beauty.

21. Appreciate firefighters, teachers and mothers… the real heroes of this world versus reality show celebrities who make fortunes in their race to the bottom.

22. Inspire your teammates.

23. Work harder than is common.

24. Make today’s work better than yesterday’s.

25. To double your income, triple your rate of learning (and personal growth).

26. Use your life to have an Impact… while you create a gorgeous lifestyle for yourself and those you love.

Keep Leading Without A Title.

Robin Sharma

P.S. For more ideas and insights like this, read “The Leader Who Had No Title

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