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Business Lessons

4 'Work' Teachings from the Style Icon – Rihanna

Rihanna is winning the game of music, fashion and work, all at once. Here are some crucial lessons of business from her burgeoning empire
Entrepreneur Staff
Features Writer
4 min read

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Robyn Rihanna Fenty popularly known by her middle name Rihanna is a woman of many talents. The celebrated singer and actress has earned many crowns through her career as an artist but her business acumen is equally on point. Ever since being discovered by the Record Producer Evan Rogers in 2003, the musical diva has proved herself as a woman of worth.

From her appealing personality to dazzling fashion sense and musical talent, RiRi has earned herself a distinguished identity as an artist but she is no less as a businesswoman too. At just 31, the Barbadian singer has emerged as the best-selling music artist of all time, bagged multiple Grammys, has had 30 singles on Billboard’s Top 10 chart and is now disrupting the beauty industry with her makeup line – Fenty Beauty.

Rihanna is winning the game of music, fashion and work, all at once. Here are some crucial lessons of business from her burgeoning empire:

Collaborate to Accelerate

Rihanna unarguably lacks in the voice department when compared to other top musical talents. It is the way she has positioned herself as an artist and as a businesswoman that beats any other renowned singer. Through her career, she has teamed with the likes of Ne-Yo, Drake, Sean Paul, Calvin Harris and more teaching world the power of collaboration.

In fact, she earned her first ever Grammy, ‘Best Rap Collaboration’, for her worldwide hit with Jay-Z, ‘Umbrella’. On the business front too, the lady kept her aesthetics intact. At the beginning of her career, she had an endorsement deal with Secret Body Spray that led her to create her own fragrance line ‘Nude’ & ‘Rebelle’, followed by collaborations with Puma and Stance.

Be Honest to Your Work

Never has RiRi ever rushed to get her projects on the floor. She has taken her time, put in enough efforts to address the pros and cons associated with the work before jumping into it. Fenty Beauty was in the making for nearly three years with two years of development and several months of testing and teasing, Rihanna slowly worked on a range of initial products before launching the brand in September 2017.

She acknowledged the void in the market and planned her products accordingly. “I didn’t care how long it took, I was going to make sure that we covered most skin tones. Diversity and inclusivity are important to the brand,” Rihanna had told Harper’s Bazaar in an interview. With a year of its official launch, her cosmetic brand – Fenty Beauty has valued 500 million euros.

Let the Passion Guide You

Rihanna has been vocal about following the heart and not forcing oneself into a career or look that you aren’t passionate about. She has iterated it again and again that one can’t be happy and achieve success if they lack the drive to do the thing they are running after. Passion is essential and letting that guide the way into opportunities and in life is the best way to find happiness and success.

Her passion for singing has opened doors and paved the way to the life she has now. Mind you, she is the only artist to reach 100 million gold and platinum song certifications through the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Give Back

The gracious singer also possesses a generous heart too. An active philanthropist, Rihanna created her Believe Foundation in 2006. The initiative takes care of terminally ill kids. Later, she supported a variety of charitable endeavours before founding the Clara Lionel Foundation (CLF) in 2012. Named after Rihanna’s grandparents, the foundation supports innovative education and health programs around the world.

She hosts a ‘Diamond Ball’ annually to raise funds for CLF. Her charitable works have been recognized by world leaders including the former US President Barack Obama. In 2017, Harvard University named Rihanna as the ‘Humanitarian of The Year’.

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