Career Spotlight: Doug Bouton (C'07)

Doug Bouton (C'07)

President and COO, Halo Top Creamery

Describe your current position and what led you to your job:

My current position is president and COO of Halo Top Creamery. I work, along with my business partner and the CEO, to run the day-to-day activities of the company. I generally take the lead on operations and sales, and my business partner takes the lead on marketing, finances and research and development. Before joining Halo Top, I was a corporate attorney at Proskauer Rose LLP. Simply put, I hated practicing law at a big law firm. So, I quit and started this company with my business partner.

What has been the most rewarding moment in your career?

There have been many ups and downs. The highs are generally securing new (and big) accounts and lows can be any number of things. The most rewarding thing about Halo Top is that I am my own boss with complete control over my own schedule.

What is the best career advice you have received?

Do what makes you happy. Do not worry about anything else. All the other stuff is just noise. Do what makes you happy.

What would you recommend to someone interested in working in your field?

It’s very difficult and I’m very fortunate. Before working for a start-up company, the first thing I would ask is whether the product or service has significant differentiation from competing products or services. I couldn’t work at Halo Top if it wasn’t a first-to-market product, and the business opportunities would be far fewer.

What challenges have you faced and how did you successfully manage one situation?

One of the biggest challenges we faced was managing finances and cash flow (like any startup). We successfully raised $500,000 from friends and family during our initial seed round, which closed on Sept. 30, 2013. Managing the capital raise was very challenging, but very rewarding once it closed.

What skills are necessary or what prepared you the most for your career?

There aren’t any particular skills. Running a company isn’t rocket science. Bring in more money than is going out—it’s that simple. You do need to be willing to take risks and give up safer careers that your parents or others will probably want you to keep. Fortunately, my parents were extremely supportive in my decision to leave the law firm.

If you could have another career what would it be?

Running my own company is the career for me, whatever company that may be. I also opened my own law practice and would highly recommend that for any attorneys who are jaded with big law.

How did your time at Georgetown University influence you and your career path?

I love the Jesuit philosophy of educating the entire person—holistic education—as opposed to just worrying about academics. I studied mathematics and theology, which taught me to critically think—a trait that I think is a necessity for everyone. I also grew and matured as a person throughout my time at Georgetown, not just in the classroom but socially as well. In no small way, my time and experiences at Georgetown prepared me for the rest of my life. I’m very fortunate to have attended Georgetown.