We begin our Best of the Virgin Podcast season with James Watt, co-founder of Brewdog, the Scottish brewer that went from a £30 thousand loan in 2007 to become a £300 million company today.
The beers have won all sorts of awards, not least the coveted record of strongest beer ever made, a title for which it is in an ongoing battle with German brewer, Schorschbrau.
There are now not only various beers, but various bars - both in the UK and around the world.
James has also won numerous awards: he was named Scotland's youngest ever Entrepreneur of the Year in 2010 and won Food and Drink Entrepreneur of the Year, Retail Entrepreneur of the Year and Great British Entrepreneur of the Year 2014.
And he’s the author of Business for Punks: Break All the Rules - the BrewDog Way - which you should all read.
Here to whet your appetite are five of his tips for business success:
“Any business has to stand for more than making money. You have to have an insanely strong mission at the core of what you do, if you’re going to get customers to care.”
“Cash is king and you need to know your finances inside out. Like it or not, your ship’s keel is purely financial.”
“Don’t depend on anyone for anything. Anyone that’s not in your company is not going to care as much as you do. Learn the skills you need yourself.”
“Don’t be scared to take any risk. The most risky thing you can do is not take any risk at all. If you never take a risk, you’re never going to do anything that stands out.”
“Ignore advice. If you’re going to make mistakes, make your own mistakes. There’s nothing worse than making somebody else’s mistakes.”
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