Meet the MD: Paul Haydock, DueCourse

Meet the MD: Paul Haydock, DueCourse

SME financing specialists DueCourse are headed up by Paul Haydock, an entrepreneur who founded the firm back in 2014. He tells, in nautical terms, exactly what his job entails.

Describe your role in no more than 100 words


  • Steer the ship, making sure everyone on board is rowing in the right direction
  • Bring on board the best people
  • Ensure there is always enough money in the bank to keep the ship going
    • What is it the company does?

      We enable businesses to achieve their ambitions by giving them the ability to free the money tied-up in their unpaid invoices in just a few clicks, whenever they like.

      Give us a brief timeline of your career so far – where did you start, how did you move on?

      • Graduated from Cambridge in 2006
      • Started first business at 22 importing promotional products for graduate recruitment
      • Started second business – and first technology venture; – in 2009 (aged 25)
      • Successfully exited in 2013 as part of a private equity deal
      • Started DueCourse in 2014
        • What do you believe makes a great leader? 

          I think a great leader is someone who leads by example; who does the things they would like the rest of the company to adhere to. It’s also someone who over communicates and someone who is consistent and can be tough, yet fair.

          What has been your biggest challenge in your current position?

          Continually finding amazing people to join the team. We only want amazing.

          How do you alleviate the stress that comes with your job?

          I’m fortunate that I’m able to switch off quite easily; when I’m on, I’m on 100% and I’m intense, but when I’m off, I’m off fully and able to recuperate and re-energise. Off time is spent with friends and family, and travelling (I’m a travel addict).

          When you’ve been doing this a long time (10 years in my case) you come to the realisation that the people who matter love you whatever happens. This just gives you the freedom to go for it!

          When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

          I wanted to be an aeronautical engineer. My dad is an engineer – so to be one working on planes sounded cool. Thank God it didn’t happen though, I did engineering at university and found it very boring.

          Any pet hates in the workplace? What do you do about then?

          I can’t stand when people say something can’t be done, or try to talk people out of something as in their mind they perceive it can’t be done. It drives me batty. I pull people up on it all the time and explain that 99% of the population think that it can’t be done – but the 1% who do give it a go are the ones who are going to unlock exponential value if it comes off; so just go for it! If you are wrong, you’ve lost nothing. If you are right, you’ll be right big time as 99% of people didn’t even give it a go so all the value is yours.

          Where do you see the company in five years time?

          In eight countries, helping thousands of SMEs across the world release billions of pounds in money tied-up in their unpaid invoices.

          What advice would you give to an aspiring business leader?

          The biggest asset you can use is persistence; if you believe in what you are trying to do, keep going. Don’t stop. Keep pushing that boulder up the hill. One day it’s going to start to roll down the other side.

          Make sure you enjoy what you are doing. Life is too short to do something you don’t enjoy every day.