Register For Our Mailing List

Register to receive our free weekly newsletter including editorials.

Home / 23

Sir Richard Branson gives 5 business lessons learnt from sporting success

Sir Richard Branson posted the following message to his 2.2 million contacts on LinkedIn.

It has been a glorious month for British sport, fresh off the back of last year’s incredible Olympic success. As well as sitting back and enjoying the fantastic spectacle of Andy Murray’s Wimbledon win, the Tour de France, the Lions series triumph and England’s battle for the Ashes with Australia, it is worth considering the business implications of sporting success.

In addition to the benefits to the economy exciting sport provides, there is a huge amount individuals can learn from the example of top sports teams. Here are five business lessons to be learnt from sporting success.

1. Teamwork is paramount

The Lions series win in Australia was a fantastic example of teamwork. Over the tour, the team personnel altered rapidly, most notably when star player Brian O’Driscoll was left out of the final Test by coach Warren Gatland. There is no I in team and surrounding yourself with great people means there is always somebody else who can step up and do a great job, O’Driscoll was still part of the squad supporting fervently from the sidelines and the Lions won the last Test. Entrepreneurs who try to go it alone will usually fail unless they have a strong support structure. This is also evident in individual sports, notably with Andy Murray’s tight-knit team helping him to the title at Wimbledon.

2. Mentorship matters

However experienced you are, mentorship is still a huge help. I have had business mentors throughout my life, and been fortunate enough to use my experience to mentor others. In cricket, the mentorship of England’s world-class coaches (and former world-class players) Andy Flower and Graham Gooch has helped develop top talents like Alistair Cook into real leaders. Ivan Lendl has added an extra dimension to Andy Murray’s game by mentoring him on the value of mental toughness to partner natural talent and hard work. Mentoring is often is the missing link between a promising businessperson and a successful one.

3. Be resilient and determined

Any entrepreneur who expects instant success is setting themself up for a fall. You need resilience and determination to keep getting back up every time you suffer a blow. Watching Chris Froome’s superhuman efforts in this year’s Tour De France is a great example of this. While his team struggled in the mountains he was abandoned and attacked on all sides. Rather than wilting, he took on all-comers and consolidated his lead in the race. You can’t always win, but you must protect the downside.

4. Have pride and purpose

Both Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic believe strongly in having a purpose beyond sport. Rather than sulk after losing the Wimbledon final, Djokovic raised over £1.2 million at a gala in London to help underprivileged kids in Serbia. Meanwhile, Andy Murray donated his Aegon Championship winnings to support cancer charities. Regardless of what stage your business is at, you should think about how you can make a positive impact upon people’s lives, not just focus upon profit.

5. Delegate wherever possible

There are some things you simply have to do for yourself. But as the tasks for any entrepreneur mount up, you need to delegate to others in order to free yourself up to think about the bigger picture. The same is true in sport. Witness the amazing work supporting riders do on behalf of their leaders in the Tour de France. Equally, look at how all of the responsibilities for developing Andy Murray’s game are delegated out. While Ivan Lendl is coach, he is also supported by a fitness coach, hitting partner, conditioning coach – not to mention his mum Judy! All of this help allows Murray to go onto the court with perfect preparation. If you have a big meeting of your own, don’t do all of the prep work yourself, get your team to help out.


 

Leave a Comment:

     
banner

Most viewed in recent weeks

A tonic for turbulent times: my nine tips for investing

Investing is often portrayed as unapproachably complex. Can it be distilled into nine tips? An economist with 35 years of experience through numerous market cycles and events has given it a shot.

Rival standard for savings and incomes in retirement

A new standard argues the majority of Australians will never achieve the ASFA 'comfortable' level of retirement savings and it amounts to 'fearmongering' by vested interests. If comfortable is aspirational, so be it.

Dalio v Marks is common sense v uncommon sense

Billionaire fund manager standoff: Ray Dalio thinks investing is common sense and markets are simple, while Howard Marks says complex and convoluted 'second-level' thinking is needed for superior returns.

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 467

Fund manager reports for last financial year are drifting into client mailboxes, and many of the results are disappointing. With some funds giving back their 2021 gains, why did they not reduce their exposure to hot stocks when faced with rising inflation and rates?

  • 21 July 2022

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 466 with weekend update

Heard the word, cakeism? As in, 'having your cake and eating it too'. The Reserve Bank wants to simultaneously fight inflation by taking away spending power, while not driving the economy into a recession. If you want to help, stop buying stuff.

  • 14 July 2022

Welcome to Firstlinks Edition 465 with weekend update

Many thanks for the thousands of revealing comments in our survey on retirement experiences. We discuss the full results. And with the ASX200 down 10%, the US S&P500 off 20% and bond prices tanking, each investor faces the new financial year deciding whether to sit, sell or invest more.

  • 7 July 2022

Latest Updates

Economy

The paradox of investment cycles

Now we're captivated by inflation and higher rates but only a year ago, investors were certain of the supremacy of US companies, the benign nature of inflation and the remoteness of tighter monetary policy.

Shares

Reporting Season will show cost control and pricing power

Companies have been slow to update guidance and we have yet to see the impact of inflation expectations in earnings and outlooks. Companies need to insulate costs from inflation while enjoying an uptick in revenue.

Shares

The early signals for August company earnings

Weaker share prices may have already discounted some bad news, but cost inflation is creating wide divergences inside and across sectors. Early results show some companies are strong enough to resist sector falls.

Property

The compelling 20-year flight of SYD into private hands

In 2002, the share price of the company that became Sydney Airport (SYD) hit 80 cents from the $2 IPO price. After 20 years of astute investment driving revenue increases, it sold to private hands for $8.75 in 2022.

Investment strategies

Ethical investing responding to some short-term challenges

There are significant differences in the sector weightings of an ethical fund versus an index, and while this has caused some short-term headwinds recently, the tailwinds are expected to blow over the long term.

Investment strategies

If you are new to investing, avoid these 10 common mistakes

Many new investors make common mistakes while learning about markets. Losses are inevitable. Newbies should read more and develop a long-term focus while avoiding big mistakes and not aiming to be brilliant.

Investment strategies

RMBS today: rising rate-linked income with capital preservation

Lenders use Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities to finance mortgages and RMBS are available to retail investors through fund structures. They come with many layers of protection beyond movements in house prices. 

Sponsors

Alliances

© 2022 Morningstar, Inc. All rights reserved.

Disclaimer
The data, research and opinions provided here are for information purposes; are not an offer to buy or sell a security; and are not warranted to be correct, complete or accurate. Morningstar, its affiliates, and third-party content providers are not responsible for any investment decisions, damages or losses resulting from, or related to, the data and analyses or their use. Any general advice or ‘regulated financial advice’ under New Zealand law has been prepared by Morningstar Australasia Pty Ltd (ABN: 95 090 665 544, AFSL: 240892) and/or Morningstar Research Ltd, subsidiaries of Morningstar, Inc, without reference to your objectives, financial situation or needs. For more information refer to our Financial Services Guide (AU) and Financial Advice Provider Disclosure Statement (NZ). You should consider the advice in light of these matters and if applicable, the relevant Product Disclosure Statement before making any decision to invest. Past performance does not necessarily indicate a financial product’s future performance. To obtain advice tailored to your situation, contact a professional financial adviser. Articles are current as at date of publication.
This website contains information and opinions provided by third parties. Inclusion of this information does not necessarily represent Morningstar’s positions, strategies or opinions and should not be considered an endorsement by Morningstar.