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Virgin Group Summary Essay

3761 words - 16 pages

The Virgin Group: Executive Summary
The Virgin Group is one of Britain’s largest business empires. The heterogeneous Britishcorporation founded by Sir Richard Branson has infiltrated into vastly diverse industries wherebyunconventional business tactics are utilized to cross borders into new industries. Though the Virgin Grouphas retained an undeniable mystique, little empirical research has been done to obtain a perceptive analysison the empire. Since the approach in which an organization manages itself is imperative to its success, it isimportant to look outside the box to assess the effectiveness of Virgin’s management operations. This paper examines the organizational culture that is ...view middle of the document...

The company hassuccessfully incorporated a copious number of diverse industries under the Virgin brand. This includestravel, mobile, financial services, leisure, cosmetics, retail, and music businesses (Virgin, n.d.). Virgin has
been able to dominate the British market and has therefore continued to rapidly expand into other regionssuch as the United States, Canada and Australia. The enterprise was founded by Sir Richard Branson in1970 as a simple mail-order record retailer and has blossomed into one of the most prosperous businessempires in the business world (Virgin, n.d.).To date, the Virgin Group has globalized and established over 200 small to mid-sized firms,employing over 25,000 people. As a result, the company has exceeded over $7 billion in revenue in 2002(Virgin, n.d.). Each one of Virgin’s 200 firms operates as a single entity. Branson either holds ownership of a firm as CEO, or has a minority or majority stake. The Virgin Group does not hold a hierarchal presencewithin the empire, which allowed its various subsidiaries to operate in an autonomous manner (Wikipedia,2006).A large component of Virgin’s success has been credited to the founder, Sir Richard Branson.Branson’s self persona is keenly aligned with Virgin’s brand identity and has set the tone for itsorganizational culture (Virgin, n.d.). His beliefs and vision for Virgin has shaped the structure and culture of which its success is based upon. Branson has followed this guideline in how he treats his customers, hisemployees and how Virgin’s products are produced (Virgin, n.d.). The Virgin Group has had a profoundimpact on business relations in Britain and now the globe. The mystique that surrounds this company isundeniable; this has allowed the empire to flourish in uncertain and ambiguous times whilst pursuingfinancial success.
The Virgin Group: Corporate Culture
The Virgin Group’s overall brand identity is built upon the founder Richard Branson’s philosophy whichstates that “if you keep your staff happy then the customer will be happy, and if you keep the customer happy then the shareholders are happy” (Virgin, n.d.). This underlying belief transcends into each one of Virgin’s subsidiaries and into each individual organizational culture. The Virgin Group genuinely believes in making a difference in each consumer, which can only be accomplished by delivering quality serviceaccomplished by empowered and motivated employees. This ultimately enables the Virgin group to foster an informal, anti-corporate work environment, which is continuously defined by the pop culture of its era(Virgin, n.d.; Grant, 2004). Management holds high expectations and as such they expect a high level of commitment, the acceptance of personal responsibility, and long hours of work when needed (Grant,2004). Financial rewards at Virgin for most employees are typically modest; however, the companycontinues to procure an abundance of non-monetary benefits, which include social activities,...

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