David Duke shares his leadership inspirations

My way – David Duke

David Duke, CEO of Edinburgh-based social enterprise Street Soccer Scotland, has gone from living on the street to running his own firm. He shares his inspirations

I would most like to change how we view homelessness and talk about the subject. People often refer to “the homeless”. This language suggests that those without a roof over their heads are different. But it’s not “us and them”; it’s just us.

The best speech I’ve ever heard was by Jimmy Reid, a shop steward representing shipyard workers on the Clyde. In 1971 he led a “work-in” that, in effect, saved the industry there. When the University of Glasgow elected him as rector, his address was so powerful that the New York Times printed it in full.

The ideal book for anyone looking to make a positive impact on the world is Doing Good Better by William MacAskill.

My way of switching off is music. It has always been my escape, as it helps me relax. I also love the Scottish Highlands – this is the most beautiful wee country in the world when the weather’s good.

If I could spend the evening with any figure from history, I would have to choose Madiba. I’d love to ask Nelson Mandela how he stayed focused on his dream and his mission through such difficult times. Others would surely have given up under the conditions he endured.

The companies I most admire are those that are doing good work to benefit society. There are some big brands – Patagonia, Pret A Manger and Toms, for instance – doing great things to tackle environmental challenges, poverty and homelessness.

To watch David Duke discuss the founding of his business, and interviews with other inspirational IoD members, visit iod.com/ingoodcompany


About author

Ryan Herman

Ryan Herman

Alongside his work for Director, Ryan has written for SportBusiness International, VICE Sports, Populous, Audi and Gallop Magazine and was previously editor of Sky Sports Magazine.

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