Richard Branson has been labelled something of a “rogue maverick”. Throughout his long business career he has exhibited great independence in thought and action along with exceptional calculated risk-taking in the successful building of his Virgin brand.
Branson has also been tagged as a "transformational leader" in the management dictionary, with his maverick strategies and his stress on the Virgin Group as an organisation driven on informality and information, one that is bottom-heavy rather than strangled by top-level management.
His portfolio of companies cut across many vertical and horizontal industries, most of which have particularly high barriers to entry either in terms of initial capital expenditure and/or heavy legal compliance with Government regulatory frameworks. Looking at Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Trains these are two examples of very successful private sector attempts at breaking into otherwise Government monopolistic businesses. He has demonstrated a great aptitude for calculated risk taking along with acute business savvy. These traits are well apparent in his long running legal disputes with British Airways which have seen Virgin substantially expand its trans-Atlantic market share as well as take over the role of national flag carrier for the United Kingdom’s aviation sector. He has capitalised on his position as the underdog in his disputes against the main industry players to win more public favour as the “champion” of the “man in the street”.
The diversification of his brand into areas such as finance, telecommunications and healthcare demonstrates that Richard is continuously seeking new business opportunities and loves a good challenge, especially when looking to enter a market dominated by a few major players.
I think Richard Branson is opportunistic and not visionary. This is reflective from one of his quotes, “I have always lived my life by thriving on opportunity…… ”. On a contrast a visionary creates a...