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on October 6, 2012
Who says a business book can't be entertaining? Whether you are an entrepreneur trying to get your business off the ground, an executive in a business that needs a boost or a worker bee looking to make work more fun, this book is for you.

Richard Branson is the Leonardo da Vinci of business. His unquenchable curiosity combined with contagious extroversion is the alchemy behind the 400+ successful businesses he has created. This book, consisting of 76 short essays and articles, documents the lessons he has learned. Numerous examples, most drawn from real-life experiences with people at his Virgin Group companies, are a roadmap for others in business to turbocharge their own success.

Branson's "Like a Virgin" reveals just what a huge gap exists in modern business school curriculum. Do they teach these things like this?

- A CEO needs "a certain generosity of spirit."
- "You have to protect your people."
- "You must be fearless."
- "Business favors people who, when they see a problem or injustice, try to do something about it."
- "Leaders have empathy ... for people who are affected by the business's operations."
- Show generous praise for employees caught doing something right: amp it up!
- Think big. Build small.
- "The sky is no longer the limit."
- Be very tolerant of mistakes. Move on. Give employees second chances (he did so even with a thief!)

Business should be fun. Employees are co-entrepreneurs and enthusiastic brand ambassadors. Challenge. Celebrate. Keep splitting the company into smaller businesses as it grows to avoid bureaucracy and empower employees.

There is no identifiable progression of thought to the sequence of these articles. Although each is excellent in its own right, it is difficult to identify the article's subject from the table of contents. The articles are not numbered making it a bit troublesome to reference any particlar one or to build a concordance (cross-reference) to include in, say, an Amazon review. If it were possible to deduct a half-star from the rating, this would be the reason to do so.

Some articles are thoughtful essays and others are extended responses to questions he has received from people via email and social media. Topics include how to plan a startup to maximize chances for success; how to write a compelling business plan; perfecting your pitch; raising money; dealing with customer complaints; motivating employees; dealing with partners; failure; the art of delegation; when to step aside; environmental stewardship; the war on drugs; earning customer trust; and marketing, sales and advertising.

Branson's writing style is conversational, succinct, personal and tempered by real world situations involving employees, partners, vendors and customers. His charisma seeps out of the page. His advice is very practical and for the most part consists of ideas that anyone can immediately put into practice with some modification for circumstances.

Imagine, a business book that is a "page turner." Enjoy! Five stars!

PS. Read the Foreword to the book to better understand the title of this review :)
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on November 2, 2012
Branson is a fascinating character and I read anything that I can get my hands on when it comes to Virgin. Obviously he has been successful and has a lot he could share. He does not do it in this book. As a primmer on Customer Service it is entertaining. Not much else to say about it.
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on September 6, 2012
Very easy to read, totally engaged & could not put it down. Being a business owner who uses alternative measures to gain market share & believes in company culture! Fantastic!
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on July 5, 2012
When you're starting a business or a career, you've got to think out of the box with fresh new bold, exuberant ideas that lack cynicism. In other words, think Like a Virgin! Sir Richard you've done it again with a book that empowers and excites our imagination! This is a must read for anyone who is in business or wants to be!!
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on July 30, 2013
I read all the other Richard Branson books and this I think is the weakest of his books. I had high hopes for this book, but when I started reading it just did not live up to my expectations. It feels very light from a content perspective and is too high level (not sure about the best term to describe it) - in that regards the book title is very misleading. The book does not have a good flow and so it is more difficult (and less relaxing) to read.

If you have read his other books, this one is the one to skip. While the advice in this book is solid, it's repetitive after having read the other books. And while the other books had a great connection and good flow, these "short stories" do not.

Richard Branson seems like a really nice guy and his approach to business and life are simply awesome. So, buy his other books and skip this one. It is much more fun to enjoy his stories that way.
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on February 19, 2015
Great book. It is refreshing to see someone so high profile still be genuine and down to earth. There are lots of great lessons to be learned by reading and living the philosophies taught in this book.
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on February 23, 2015
I loved Reading the book. It gives you an inside about the life of Richard Branson and how he started his business as a Young lat.
The book tells you that you can do everything you want and only the sky is the limit. But you have to fight for your dream. It is not something you can do easy and it shows that in life and in business are lots of obstacles.
Every obstacle and every failure is only something you can learn from it to do it better in your next step. It gives lots of ideas what you can do as an entrepreneur as long as you focus on your goal.
I enjoyed the book very much and I liked the writing style of Richard Branson. It gives you an idea what he went through when starting his business. I highly recommend the book when starting your own business as an entrepreneur.
These insides that give you Richard Branson you won’t get at any business school because this is something you have to experience on your own. You might get some basic ideas in school but the real life is very much different from theory.
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on January 21, 2014
I adore Richard Branson but I was expecting a "meatier" read. This book was just a fluff piece which was unfortunate. Could have basically just been a series of blog posts. Nothing groundbreaking here. I will check out a few of his other reads in hope they will be better.
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on June 27, 2016
A good read with a different layout than a book you just read right through from cover to cover. You can pick and choose what you read, go through it like a reference book, etc. It is written to use as you see fit and chapters do not really build upon one another.

There are a lot of good nuggets of information and insights from Richard that really made me think.
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on September 14, 2014
I will pretty much read anything this man writes, even off a napkin. He is as real as they get. His story of success is amazing, he is impressive and not pretentious or arrogant. A quick read with good secrets to take away!
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