Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Matthew May, Principal Partner of Stratechia, located in Lake Sherwood, CA, USA.

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

My business is advisory services —strategy, innovation, lean — for tech-forward companies.

Tell us about yourself

My life changed when I had the good fortune to be exclusively retained by Toyota for over eight years. It changed the way I look at the world, especially business. It changed how I solve problems creatively. Rather than think about what to do, I think about what not to do. I get the greatest satisfaction from teaching, coaching, and guiding business professionals to look at their challenges through the lens of subtraction and the maximum effect through minimum means.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

The biggest achievement for me has been the ability to remain an indie dent advisor for over 30 years. It has allowed me the freedom to reinvent myself every few years, and each time I do, I have been able to share my thoughts with the world through the books I write. I have written five bestselling or critically acclaimed business books, with a sixth on the way.

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

For me, it’s managing others. That explains why I’m a solopreneur!

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

  1. Whatever your business idea is, test it out first with real potential customers before expending valuable resources or incurring risk.
  2. Keep it lean. Lean is about the absence of waste, often in the form of slack resources. Resist the urge to ride each new business wave because all waves crest.
  3. If you lead others, wear two hats: be the glue as well as the grease. Crest esprit de corps with the “glue” hat on, clear the way for those in your charge to optimize their contribution with the “grease” hat on.

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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