Made possible thanks to

For those in the creative industries, new ideas are often in abundance. But how can you tell the good from the bad, and see the spark in those that could reach the giddying heights of business success?

This 4-part short course is for anyone with a glimmer of a creative business idea. During the course, you'll learn the first crucial steps to take as you get your idea off the ground, how to tell those that are worth pursuing from the rest, how to start-up your side hustle and realise your ambitions of becoming an entrepreneur.

Over the 4 modules you'll move from idea to business plan by following these steps:
  • Think It - every business starts with an idea, but not all ideas create great businesses. In this section, you'll learn the basics of business models, what foundations do you need to lay to create a successful enterprise and how will your idea make money.
  • Feel It - this is the section where we get personal. The entrepreneur's journey is rarely smooth, so in this module, we'll help you find the resilience to work on complex and demanding business ideas and provide tips and tools to be productive and thrive during the process.
  • Make It - in this step we look at how to bring your business idea to life, the processes you need to go through to get things made, the importance of an MVP, and map out the resources you'll need to make your thing a reality.
  • Fund It - in the last module, you'll learn about the multitude of different options out there to get money for your business. From crowdfunding to angel investors, or simply getting customers buying your product or service, you'll weigh up the pros and cons of each.

By the end of this course, you'll have the tools and methods to take your business idea to the next level.

A big thanks to our partners, giffgaff, for making this course possible and available for you free.

Watch Intro Video

Watch the course trailer

Course curriculum

  • 1


    • Welcome to D&AD's Start-Up School with giffgaff

    • 5 quick questions

  • 2


    • THINK IT

    • THINK IT: What's a good idea?

    • THINK IT: Purpose vs Profit

    • THINK IT: Reason for being

    • THINK IT: Purpose and Positioning

    • THINK IT: Personality

    • THINK IT: Business Model

  • 3


    • FEEL IT

    • FEEL IT: You and your story

    • FEEL IT: Making mistakes

    • FEEL IT: Finding a co-founder

    • FEEL IT: Start with a side hustle

    • FEEL IT: Motivation and resilliance

  • 4


    • MAKE IT

    • MAKE IT: Making an MVP

    • MAKE IT: Case study - Angle Razor

    • MAKE IT: Service vs Product

    • MAKE IT: What and how?

    • MAKE IT: Who?

  • 5


    • FUND IT

    • FUND IT: Pricing

    • FUND IT: Investment

    • Fund it: Sell your story

    • PITCH IT

    • PITCH IT: Design your deck

    • What's next

Your course leader


Tom Evans

I’m a consultant and advisor helping businesses large and small shape their products, services, brand and communications. I’m also a mentor, moderator and coach running Masterclasses, Workshops and Sessions that help people learn about themselves, grow and level up on their creative careers and entrepreneurial skills. My background is Leadership in Design and Creative Agencies. I founded Mook, one of the UK’s early digital agencies, and saw it through to acquisition, first by advertising agency Nitro and then later by the huge digital agency Sapient to form SapientNitro (eventually acquired by Publicis). After a brief stint in fashion on the board of Jack Wills as Brand Comms Director I returned to agency land as Executive Creative Director of Omnicom owned advertising agency TBWA London. Along the way I had kids and in parallel to my work in design and technology founded BleepBleeps, an award-winning hardware startup creating internet connected consumer electronics and digital services that make parenting easier.

Join our mailing list!

Get exclusive news about upcoming programs, updates and future events.


  • Who is this course for?

    Start-Up School is for anyone anyone with a spark of a creative idea who wants to turn it into a business reality.

  • Is this course full-time/part-time?

    This course is designed to take around 8-10 hours to complete, but you can do this in your own time and at your own pace - all in one day, split over weeks or even across several months.

  • Will I get a certificate at the end of this course?

    Yes! Once you've completed the course you can request a certificate.

  • How long do I have access?

    You have until June 2022 to complete this course.

  • What does my tuition cover?

    This course is free of charge thanks to sponsorship from giffgaff.

  • Can I change my order?

    If you'd like to make any changes to your order then contact the team at and we can help.

  • How can I contact an instructor?

    This course is self-directed and designed for you to complete by yourself, with the support of peers learning alongside you. If you need help, feel free to contact one of the D&AD team at