Today’s interview is with Doug Richard made famous in the UK for being one of the first Dragons on the BBC series, Dragon’s Den. More recently Doug started the School for Startups in 2008 to provide accelerated instruction to entrepreneurs and it has grown into a world leader in delivering targeted programs that teach people how to start and run better businesses. One of their flagship programmes is their School for Creative Start Ups and it is on the back of this that Doug recently published a book: How to Start a Creative Business: the jargon-free guide for creative entrepreneurs which aims to teach creative people how to turn their creative hobbies and skills into sustainable businesses. He joins us today to tell us a little more about the book and why he wrote it.
This interviews follows on the back of last week’s interview: The Customer Rules: The 39 Essential Rules for Delivering Sensational Service and is number fifty-two in the series of interviews with authors and business leaders that are doing great things and helping businesses innovate, become more social and deliver better service.
Here’s the highlights from the interview I did with Doug:
About Doug (taken and adapted from the School for Start Ups website)
A successful entrepreneur with over 20 years’ experience in the development and leadership of technology and software ventures, Doug featured in the first two TV series of Dragon’s Den. He is the Founder and Vice-Chairman of the Cambridge Angels (a network for private investors), Chairman and CEO of Trutap, Chairman of the Conservative Party Small Business Task Force, and non-executive director of Alert Me, Pearl Software and Beats Digital. Between 1996 and 2000 Doug was President and CEO of Micrografx, a US publicly quoted software company. Prior to that he also founded and subsequently sold two other companies: Visual Software and ITAL Computers.
Doug holds a BA in Psychology from University of California at Berkeley and a Juris Doctor at the school of Law, University of California at Los Angeles. In 2006 Doug was an Honorary Recipient of The Queen’s Award for Enterprise Promotion and in 2007 he became a fellow of the RSA. In 2009 Doug received an Honorary Degree and is now a Doctor of the University of Essex.
Through School for Startups Doug has delivered instruction to more than 10,000 business owners with help from universities, public institutions like the British Library and philanthropic organizations like the Royal Institute of Great Britain. In 2010 Richard received the Enterprise Educator of the year award from the National Council on Graduate Employment for his work through School for Startups with UK Universities.