This month’s featured Coherian is Darlington Wleh, a native of Liberia who grew up in Minnesota and has spent most of his adult life in Fort Collins. Today we’re talking about Fort Collins’ best Coworking space, Darlington’s passion for entrepreneurship, his favorite hangouts and some literature for good measure.
Founder & CEO • RADD Creative
Darlington has been a welcome presence at Cohere since joining a few months ago and recently took over the downstairs office. He has three employees and his business looks like it’s buzzing along at an impressive speed.
“The whole idea with what we’re trying to do at RADD is to partner what we call business solution partners with small businesses and that person who’s connected to businesses within about a 60-mile radius of where they live,” he told me yesterday.
“And our goal is to be the Magic 8-Ball for them. So if they need a website, that person can either do it themselves or they can reach into our network of creative professionals to service them.”
RADD Creative offers web- and graphic design, content writing, technical SEO, videography, photography and software engineering services. Some of those services are done in-house; some are done through RADD’s network of contractors.
Darlington again: “I had the vision in 2013. … I rebranded and was able to hire people this year. It used to be RADD Web Studio; I rebranded to RADD Creative this year. But I’ve been trying to be that magic 8 Ball for small business since 2013.”
One example of a software application that RADD offers is maps that help direct customers to brick-and-mortar locations where they can find a business’s products. If you’re a light manufacturer or a T-shirt designer that distributes to retailers in your area, you probably want this.
That’s good news for people who are basically competent in business but Dodo birds when it comes to software applications and website management.
What drew you to Cohere?
“It’s somewhere between a home and an office. It’s like perfectly in the middle where you can be relaxed and productive and focus.”
Why was entrepreneurship attractive to you?
“I ask myself this question every year and I write something down every year to see how it changes and then I go back and compare. This is what I wrote down this year:
It [entrepreneurship] seemed to me the most probable route to affluence, with which I mean to join the few championing ideas such doing business responsibly, fair wealth distribution and building a positive-sum society where every player hits their target.
“There’s so much shit in the world. You can go into politics to change it or you can accumulate affluence.”
“I do about 10 hours of blues and fusion dancing most weeks. Some weeks I do 20. Pretty crazy about that stuff.”
(Darlington dances almost as much as I sleep, as indicated by our respective mental health status.)
“Other than that, I really love traveling and every excuse to (like to go dance events). I also enjoy group fitness and strategy board games.”
What’s your favorite walkable restaurant?
“I guess it depends what I’m in the mood for, but for dinner I always go to the same place and always get the same thing. I go to Los Tarascos and get the Chili Verde.
“At the Social, they make a really nice Shishito Peppers plate and the drink that I really like is their Black Manhattan. I’ve tried a lot of Manhattans around town – it’s the bomb.”
“I read a lot. I’m always reading four or five books at the same time. It’s hard to latch onto one particular one, but as far as author, I like David Brooks. He has a lot of stuff out there – he writes for the New York Times. Brooks’s books, they don’t tell; they allow you to ask yourself things. They push the brain and make you think about things.”
Interested in trying out Cohere and being surrounded by great people? Snag a free day pass and visit us!
John Garvey is a Cohere member, marketing copywriter, storyteller and writing coach. Read his blog The Garvington Post for business communication and writing tips (and the occasional rant). Also, stay posted for John’s GoFundMe campaign for a hot air balloon transportation service. Don’t tell his wife about it, though.