Like A Virgin: Secrets They Won’t Teach You at Business School. By Richard Branson

One afternoon I visited a local bookstore to find a quick read on business and leadership, and this book by Richard Branson stood out – “Like a Virgin: Secrets They Won’t Teach You at Business School.” In this book, Branson shares his lessons learned as an entrepreneur and leader … 76 lessons to be exact.

As I read through his lessons, there were many takeaways and aha moments, many of which we reinforce as facilitators in our leadership development training programs at Lead Vantage.

Leadership is complex during the best of times. During the pandemic, we faced challenges and disruptions left, right, and center. We had no choice but to evolve as leaders. Fast forward to today, and as restrictions begin to lift, and as we look ahead, many are left wondering how to redefine how we lead in a post-pandemic world.

To sum up our top 10 quotes from this book that encapsulate leadership today and into the future, here they are:

  1. “Finding them, managing them, inspiring them and then holding on to them is one of the most important challenges a business leader faces, and your success or lack thereof plays a vital role in the long-term success and growth of your business.”
  2. “People are your key asset … even the best people need great leadership. A good leader must know the team, its strengths and weaknesses; socializing and listening to the team face to face is key. One of the most common reasons people leave a job is because they were not listened to. It’s rarely just about money, more often about frustration.”
  3. “A bad leader can destroy a business very quickly.”
  4. “People are the lifeblood of any company and, whether the neighbours like it or not, they need to be looked after and celebrate again and again!”
  5. “My willingness to listen to other people and accept it when their suggestions were better than mind has served me well … I’m never too proud to admit I’m wrong or take action when others’ suggestions are better.”
  6. “A company where the staff overuse the word ‘they’ is a company with problems. If employees aren’t associating themselves with their company by using ‘we’, it is a sign that people up and down the chain of command aren’t communicating – and if that turns out to be the case, you’ll usually find secondary problems throughout the company, affecting everything from development to customer service.”
  7. “Management is also about communicating clearly; explaining why a decision has been taken or in which direction the business is going. Your communications should carry authority without being hectoring or bombastic, presenting a simple vision of what has to be achieved. At the same time, good managers continually question the way people do things and encourage employees to do the same – thereby ensuring they are always read to adapt to changing conditions.”
  8. “Work on developing a corporate culture that tries to ‘catch employees doing something right’ and rewards dedication and initiative. Empowering and taking care of your staff is the best way to look after your customers and keep them coming back for more.”
  9. “When senior managers make the effort to foster relationships with employees and colleagues, a real community spirit results.”
  10. “Invest in your people, and they will invest in you.”

If you’re interested in investing in your leaders to help them develop as strong leaders of tomorrow, as we approach a post-pandemic world, contact us by completing the form on our website: You can also email us at

Sofia Arisheh

Sofia Arisheh

Sofia Arisheh is a certified HR strategist, leader, and educator with extensive experience in multiple sectors. She specializes in aligning HR strategy with business strategy, focusing on employee-centric approaches to drive better business results.

Recommended for you

Why Psychological Safety Matters and How to Create it 

Why Psychological Safety Matters and How to Create it 

An organization can be compared to building a house. To have a strong standing structure, you need a solid foundation. Without it, you have cracks, leading to an unstable building and at its worst, a crumbling house!     How do we convince people to trust or...