Richard Branson is arguably one of the most successful living entrepreneurs of today. Having founded the Virgin Group, built himself up as an outstanding philanthropist and investor, his name is nearly synonymous with success.

Any young budding entrepreneur who wishes to make a strive as big as he has should most definitely look into his work.

Here are 5 things we can learn from Richard Branson:

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1. Give back to the community

Any decent person with money knows that it is vital to give some back to the world.

Branson is a strong example of an entrepreneur who exercises their social responsibility well. Despite his humble upbringing, Branson began giving back to his community since he was just 17, through a charity he started and pledged money to. Also notable is his contributions to education in Africa and his pledge to fund efforts going into climate change.

2. Take risks

How did Branson achieve so much success in one lifetime? Well, for one thing, he wasn’t afraid to take risks.

Branson learned early in his career that it was necessary to take big risks in order to succeed. He was not reckless of course, but he calculated all his decisions and made moves he knew would be for the greater good.

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3. Don’t be afraid of failure

With big risks, come big failures. And while that can sound intimidating, it shouldn’t scare you away.

Remember the disaster that was Virgin Cola? Dubbed one of Virgin’s biggest mistakes, Branson’s attempt at declaring a soft drink war against Coke and Pepsi wasn’t among his best moments. But if Branson had let failures like these get to him, he wouldn’t be where he was today. The lesson here is that you need to learn from your failures and move on.

4. Wake up early

“Over my 50 years in business I have learned that if I rise early I can achieve so much more in a day, and therefore in life.” – Richard Branson

When you have a schedule and life that’s as hectic as Richard Branson, you’re going to want to start the day early. Branson has said that waking up early allows him time to chart his day efficiently. Starting the day when the sun comes out is a good way to ensure you’ve done your part once it goes down.

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5. You’re not too young

Many young entrepreneurs get intimidated to begin entering the field when they’re in their teens or early twenties.

But there’s not supposed to be an age requirement to how likely you are to succeed. Branson built his first business when he was just sixteen. It was a local magazine known as the Student. Then a few years later, he founded Virgin Records. He went on to build eight different billion-dollar companies in eight different industries, all without a degree. His career has been one age-defying endeavour after another.

Age will not stop you from getting to where you want to be. Focus on your dream and work on it.

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