Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Alora May, owner of SAM & LANCE, located in Toronto, ON, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

SAM & LANCE helps people celebrate and acknowledge all of life's milestones through thoughtfully and ethically curated giftboxes featuring products from women-owned businesses. Our customers are the people who want to help their friend through a hard time, who want to celebrate their sister's promotion, who think that there is more to celebrate in life than weddings and babies (which are also great things!) Our customers love supporting each other and other women. They are the best!

Tell us about yourself

I was raised to care for the environment, support locals, and lift up other women. That's why these gift boxes were the perfect fit to start a company. We wanted ways to support our friends and loved ones easily and ethically and have gifts that weren't all about traditional life milestones. The thing that motivates us is the lovely messages our customers leave for their gift recipients. Getting a glimpse into their lives and struggles and victories is so powerful, and we love being a part of their journeys.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Being able to hire staff! We love our team so much, and having amazing women on our team to help build our dream has felt so good!

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Moving from corporate to entrepreneurship is rewarding, but at times you want to 'pass it off to your boss,' so to speak, and you cant! You're the boss now! So all decisions, departments, everything has to go through you, and it can get very overwhelming, but when things come together, that's what makes it so rewarding.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Follow your instincts! You know your business and self best, and your gut has gotten you this far, so trust it.
  2. Just because others give you advice doesn't mean you have to follow it. Yes, even if they are successful and smart people giving you the advice. If it doesn't feel right to you or you feel it compromises your values, then don't do it!
  3. Take time to rest! Building a business takes a lot of work, so make sure you get enough sleep, take some time off, and ask for help if you need it.

It's amazing how many people in your circle are willing to help out, ask a friend to edit a blog post, or see if you can borrow your brother's fancy camera; believe it or not, these seemingly small things will give you some time back and let you have time for yourself.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

Feel inspired to start, run or grow your own subscription business? Check out and learn how you can turn "one day" into day one.