The staff member, who was on standby at the time, was discovered by the company founder curled up asleep on a couch in Virgin Australia’s Sydney office.
The photo shows the airline founder crouching next to the sleeping man, while his colleagues are pictured grinning in the background.
The man is still dressed in his suit and waistcoat, with his namebadge pinned on one side, but has loosened his purple tie.
‘I popped into the office and the airport to say hello and check in to see what the team are up to,’ Mr Branson said.
‘This guy wasn’t up to much at all – I caught him sleeping on the job! Wow, did he get a shock when I woke him up,’ he said.
Mr Branson was in Sydney for a few days as part of a Virgin Australia visit.