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  LESSONS FROM BRUCE DICKINSON
Nando Souza

nando souza



bruce dickinson

Bruce Dickinson, lead singer of Iron Maiden, answered some questions at a press conference on Tuesday 28th January, just hours before his speech at the Campus Party Brazil 2014.

The artist was very different from the Bruce that the fans had been waiting for at the door near the Anhembi Parque. There was no "Scream for me, Campus Party!" or huge leaps around the stage. The Bruce Dickinson who spoke today at the #Cpbr7 is different.

The lead singer of the best Heavy Metal band in the world showed his entrepreneurial facet. Bruce could not escape from questions about his role in areas as diverse as music, aviation and, more recently, the industry of beer. The executive came to the event, especially to inspire young visitors to the Campus Party Brazil.

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Founded in 2012, his company begins to reduce costs and make a profit on aviation this year. It consumed a lot of hard work, constant effort and a lot of market research in the transportation sector.

Dickinson, the executive, was featured on the main stage at the Campus Party in a long-awaited speech about entrepreneurship. The owner of Cardiff Aviation, an aircraft maintenance company and other services, pilot and entrepreneur in the Real World Aviation training school says that one needn't be an engineer or expert in a technology field to transform an idea into a profitable business.

bruce dickinson

"I'm not an engineer, my partner is not an engineer, but we have good engineers working with us", he explains. According to Bruce, the differential is having a great idea and working on it. Joining the right people makes all the difference.

"Many entrepreneurs have no diploma, MBA, but they learn fast", he said about mastering the business heproposes to manage and invest.

Wearing trousers and a dress shirt and speaking to an audience that, oddly enough, were mostly wearing Black Sabbath, Metallica, Maiden and AC/DC t-shirts rather than the Mario Bros. ones (a rare thing at a Campus Party), Bruce began his explanation by commenting on the differences between consumers and fans.

"A consumer always has the choice," he explains. Bruce says that brands need to mirror the bands. At the time of the music market crisis in the early 2000s, industry members began to label the fans as consumers. How? Whoever downloaded music was labelled as a criminal. They said "Our fans are stealing our music because they love us. Arrest them! That makes no sense", explains Bruce.

bruce dickinson

Therein lies the difference. Large companies, according to Bruce, should not create fans and consumers, as record companies did.

But the singer alerted: "If we sell a Maiden t-shirt that falls to pieces when you use it, our fans quickly become consumers," he explains. You must take care of your brand.

"The business world is like life in the ocean. Fish have gills, they can stay in the water and breathe quietly, swimming unhurriedly. Sharks, on the other hand, do not have gills, they need to move, otherwise they drown. The more you move, the bigger you get and need to eat. What do they eat? The fish that was swimming there. This is the business world, whether you like it or not. If you stand still, someone is going to eat you", explains Bruce.

However, if you have fans, the tendency is that they follow you. And to create fans, it is necessary that your business has value.

"A beautiful secretary is not something of value, it's just nonsense", says Bruce. "You need to find out where is the value of what you do. In what your business is special. In Iron Maiden we're lucky, no one can be like us, but in other businesses it is more complicated," he admits unapologetically.

bruce dickinson

The secret, according to the singer, is in the relationship. Whatever you think you're selling, a computer, a towel, software... You're not selling it, you're selling a relationship with the person who is buying.

Bruce gives the example of the car without a door. That is, if you buy a new car and the first time you drive it, the door falls off, you will not want another model of the same brand, right? "It is not the guarantee that counts,it is trust" An example? Bruce cites Apple. "Especially when they started, they had fans ... More than fans, it was a religion. You would not buy a Mac, you would join the cult", he recalls.

But these days, Apple with its recent mistakes like Apple Maps, managed to make its fans think "we have a choice". And they became consumers. "Why does everyone I know bought iPhones, but are now thinking of buying a Samsung?", he asks ironically.

For Bruce, humans are essentially what they were 500 years ago. Social creatures who care for eye contact. And that's what today's companies need to understand. Moreover, it is necessary to think collectively and use their imagination. Quoting Einstein, Bruce Dickinson says it's essential to imagine things. "Someone once looked at the moon and said, 'One day we'll get there.'"

The singer gave examples of "how to think outside the box". One of the latest was Maiden Trooper beer. The band thought: "How do we attract those guys who are listening to our music at home? Who are watching our shows on YouTube? Who are listening to our MP3?"

The answer came from another question: "What they consume when they do such things? Beer!"

It was then that Maiden created Trooper, the band's premium beer. "This idea was never to put the label 'Iron Maiden' on an existing brand", he explained.

"You have to work with passion, work hard, and have a good idea", advises the executive for those who want to enter in the business world.

The musician also said that he takes little advantage of the artistic life in the office. But, he sees a relationship in the creative process, to transform an idea into a product, service or innovation. Bruce also reveals that having many fans of his work on Iron Maiden in the business sector helps to open doors, but it does not replace your effort pursuing innovations and investments.

Bruce Dickinson also said he did not want to buy new start-ups, but revealed that to gain their attention as an 'angel investor' you need, besides a great innovative idea, a good picture of control spending.

Finally, the lead singer of the biggest Metal band in the world summarizes his thoughts in a sentence that caught the attention: "It's not about greed, it's about fun."

You can watch the whole speech on this video:









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