10 Minutes With: The Video Professor


John W. Scherer may be the "Video Professor" on infomercials that are a ubiquitous part of cable television. In real life, he was an indifferent student.

"I would get bored easily," said the 62-year-old born entrepreneur, whose first venture as a child was selling Christmas cards. "I was more inclined toward sports than being a good student."

Scherer has never worked for anyone else, fearing his ideas would get lost in a big corporation. In the late 1980s, he ran a company that made IBM PC clones. By 1987, customers were returning the machines to retailers because they grew frustrated trying to figure out how to work them. After failing to find instructional videos to help out the stressed-out neophytes, Scherer decided to produce his own content. His company's first lesson was on DOS and was distributed on VHS.