Leadership advice for millennials

In May 2015, I moved on from my college and was eager to begin my entrepreneurial journey, pumped up with Instagram motivational quotes and recordings from Gary Vaynerchuk. 

At that point, the entrepreneurial storm hit me so hard that I struggled to manage my company due to lack of coaching and a mentor.

A new survey puts it that many millennials are starting more companies and managing bigger organisations. Around 78 per cent consider entrepreneurs successful and the main reason they aspire to follow in their footsteps is that they want to be their own boss.

The gloomy side of start-ups is that more than 50 per cent don't make it to four years in business and 46 per cent of those fail mainly due to lack of a leader.

I asked Bracken Darrell, CEO of Logitech who has quadrupled their stock price since his take-over and has managed many top companies successfully such as Gillette, Procter & Gamble, General Electric, Whirlpool, KitchenAid, Braun and Old Spice to provide few insights.

Here he gives out few actionable pieces of advice millennials can take to fulfil their potential:

You started with hardships and made it to the top. What guidance would you suggest millennials consider while setting goals?

Goals are free. Set some and then try hard to deliver them. It all starts with a dream or a goal. 

Setbacks are inevitable for every entrepreneur, How do you deal with them?

Setbacks are inevitable for everyone and everything. I used to tell my mom, who was an amazing mother but occasionally needed coaching herself from her kids, "When something is behind you in time, draw an imaginary line right behind your heels, marking all that in the past, and learn as much as you can from what's behind that. Learn, but don't waste time rethinking it. It's behind the line."

What are your fundamental principles or any such disciplinary methods that have made you successful?

Work hard and learn to love your work (there is always something to love). When I was beginning as an accountant I made myself love adding up numbers (yes we used to do that before the age of the computer).

What characteristics of millennials do you like and what enhancements might you want to propose?

I'm sure I'm wrong, but I'm kind of not in the camp that says millennial are this new species with big differences. I think you all have the same goals and dreams and insecurities and worries as every generation. You don't have a war raging so you aren't instantly forced to quit worrying so much about yourself and worry about making a difference. Neither was my generation.

So maybe that's the only advice. Try to worry about others as much as you can. I don't mean a charity necessarily but doing work that helps others, makes others better, and does good for others in other ways. Amazing how that winds up being really satisfying.

You have led the growth of multiple brands like Old Spice, Gillette, Braun, KitchenAid, Whirlpool, and now Logitech. What is your secret for versatility?

You can do almost anything if you work at it and keep learning. And even if you fail, it's ok (we all do). Just plan as well as you can so it doesn't hurt anyone or you more than you can stand.

This is a guest blog and may not represent the views of Virgin.com. Please see virgin.com/terms for more details. Thumbnail from gettyimages.


Our Companies

Quick Links