Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Michael Kenny, Co-Founder and CEO of Kenny & Company and AlignedAround, located in San Francisco, CA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I have two businesses, Kenny & Company, a Management Consulting firm focused on Strategy, Operations, and Technology which I founded in 2010, and AlignedAround, a startup founded in 2021, focused on Defining, Measuring, and Improving executive alignment.
Tell us about yourself
I am a former partner in Accenture, and over the years, I realized I really enjoyed working hand in hand with clients in small teams on real problems and having a direct impact on their businesses and lives. That led me to found Kenny & Company, and I still love the work, selling it, leading it, and actually doing it side by side with my clients. The AlignedAround startup was formed during the pandemic with a former client in Australia, as we recognized that executive alignment was the root cause of many project failures, which we were often asked to fix. Both the consulting work and the alignment startup are great fun. I love it!
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
We have lots of cachet clients, but without question, it is impacting the lives of my employees. I say we are "creating opportunities for ourselves and our families". At the end of the day, businesses are simply a way to do that.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
For me, it is the responsibility to create value for our clients and opportunities for our employees each year - I take it very personally. It is hard having to sell, lead, and deliver, but it is also hugely rewarding.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Do it now! You learn so much more when it is your own business, your own ideas, and your own money.
- Surround yourself with great people - smarter but different from you.
- Become an expert who people value for your opinion, not just your service.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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