Arlene Dickinson on Capitalism, Women and Family.Ramon Ray
Arlene Dickinson is an investor, entrepreneur, and dragon on Candian’s TV’s “Dragons’ Den”. She joined Dave Kerpen, fellow entrepreneur, best-selling author and co-founder of Listening and Beyond with Randi Zuckerberg. Listening and Beyond is a brand new company focused on 24/7 programming on Clubhouse, in-person events and more.
Dave hosts a weekly ask me anything (AMA) room on Clubhouse on Sunday evenings at 8pm EDT in the Likeable Business club on Clubhouse.
Here’s some of the top business advice and a summary of the conversation:
Arelene has invested in around 80 – 90 companies between her personal investments (50 – 60) and her investment fund (about 30).
Mistakes Founders Make
Arrogance and not being self-aware are two of the biggest mistakes that Arelene Dickinson finds startup founders make when seeking investments. What gets her excited about a founder is, mutual faith, trust, confidence and respect.
One of the biggest mistakes Arlene’s made in investing is loving the category and idea and not spending enough time to understand the entrepreneur.
Personal and Professional Life Balance
Managing our personal and professional lives is not easy.
Arlene was born with enormous energy and the ability to do a lot of things in life. This helps her balance her professional and business lives.
She expressed that when children were younger the kids paid a price, as she was working so much. Her children often thought work was a part of their entire lives. Ironically, now that the kids are older and Alrene’s more self-aware, the kids are talking about work “all the time” and Arelene’s the one asking them to talk about it less.
There are definitely challenges with raising a family and raising a business. Often times we must split our attention between one or the other. Partial attention to family and partial attention to business.
Mindset for Business and Life.
Arelene encouraged us to “pay attention to what’s in front of you”.
Don’t spend your time always thinking you’re not doing something else, well or good enough.
Don’t worry about what other people think about you
Is Capitalism Bad?
Arlene is an investor, seeking to make money with her investments.
Yes, she believes in capitalism, capitalism with a heart!
This means that it’s not about claiming money and power for a few, but it can be about equality and helping everyone gain the dream of reaping a return on money and learning how to do it.
Arelene believes in civic duty and that it’s good to talk about what you care about in your country.
Bad Founder? Good Company?
Investing in companies is important but Arlene must ensure the founder is not a jerk. It’s so important that the founder also has the same values as Arlene if they want her investment.
Men Supporting Women
What can men do to better support women in businesses? Make room in the board room, make room at the executive level.
The pandemic has put women back 50 years. Women are still the caregivers, so it’s important to create flexibility in how you expect women to work.
We, women, want to contribute everywhere, Arelene said.
Let’s make it possible.
This requires a different mentality of how work should be structured.