Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Michael Houlihan, Founder of The Barefoot Spirit, located in Forestville, CA, USA.

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

We are advisors to startups, build-ups, and buildouts, especially those with real products.

Tell us about yourself

I am the Co-Founder of Barefoot Wine, the world's largest wine brand, author of the New York Times Bestseller, The Barefoot Spirit, Entrepreneurial Educator, International Speaker, and contributor to several business publications.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Aside from starting and monetizing the Barefoot Brand, helping others achieve their goals, including name recognition, marketing, distribution, branding, and strategic planning.

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

Learning not to fall in love with your product or service and accepting and taking on the unexpected things you did not sign up for that you must do to achieve success.

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

  1. Sometimes the market fit for your product may be entirely different than what you thought. So ask, ask, ask!
  2. Identify and use your hidden assets; sometimes, you don't need money. You just need to know how to use what you already have access to.
  3. Think about who would buy your business and why from day one, even if you think you have no intention of ever selling it. Use your potential acquirer's due diligence as the outline for how you keep your file.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Experience is a great investment. Don't learn what an advisor knows the hard and expensive way.

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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