Friday, May 30, 2008

Seeing the Destination

One of the biggest challenges with a journey out of corporate America to small business is knowing what the heck small business is. This is easier said than done. Entrepreneurship is not just a difficult word to spell, but it has a lot of definitions. If you get 10 "entrepreneurs" together, you can probably get at least 15 definitions of entrepreneurship. (And maybe as many spellings!)

I have long subscribed to the belief that the definition is in the eye of the beholder. Whether it is starting a business from scratch, buying a business, running a franchise, or working in a small business, entrepreneurship takes many forms. In the end, it's a personal definition.

Until you are able to begin defining this end state, the reality of making the journey becomes more difficult to see and more unlikely. So, begin by creating your definition of entrepreneurship. Beg, borrow, and steal at will from the range that already exists. And don't let folks tell you that yours is wrong. If nothing else, most entrepreneurs are an opinionated bunch!

Giving that seemingly simple concept some thought will yield more progress than you think.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


My name is Matthew Markee. I live in Richmond, Virginia and am engaged in the small business community here. You can see my professional background through LinkedIn (

Richmond has a bit of a mixed brand, but my experience has revealed a strong and receptive business community. There is a decent mix of large companies in the city along with a myriad of small to medium business opportunities. I am continually amazed at the extent to which folks within large companies have interests in the smaller business realm, but they fail to reach out and make the connections. Without the effort, these realms simply don't seem to interact beyond the coincidental. After having made the transition myself, I am interested to use this process to capture these thoughts and get feedback on challenges people experience themselves and solutions to these. I believe the opportunities within small business can be substantial in a financial sense and many, many others. I also believe that the perception of security and other rewards within big business are not as real as many hope to believe--and certainly not over the long term.

So bear with me on this process, but I welcome feedback and comments.