Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Garth Fuller, Founder of Scoutwell, located in Portland, OR, USA.

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

Scoutwell combines digital health tools and cannabis edibles to help people find a dose and schedule that improves their sleep.

Tell us about yourself

My background is in health services research, specializing in cost-effectiveness and outcomes research. In my healthcare work, I saw so many interventions, treatments, and patient initiatives that just didn't move the needle on health outcomes. Meanwhile, cannabis was being used as a wellness intervention in really large numbers but without outcomes data at the individual and brand levels.

Scoutwell exists to help people make good, data-driven decisions as they learn how cannabis affects their sleep. Every day we wake up excited to change the "go-it-alone, trial-and-error" reality of using cannabis for sleep. We're truly excited by the opportunity to help people make good decisions for their health and wellness.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

We've hit some great milestones from a business perspective, but "accomplishments" doesn't quite describe how we think about them. We're most proud of the moments when we provide customers with valid data in a way that they understand and are excited about. It's really fulfilling to see someone who has struggled with sleep to feel like they are gaining some control over that aspect of their lives.

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

Much of my work in health care focused on supporting good decision-making under conditions of uncertainty. As a business owner, I've had to learn to make decisions on a timescale that doesn't allow for the type of deep analysis possible in a research environment. The reputation of academics in business is that they suffer from "paralysis by analysis." I can say that it's a real thing that I've had to actively work to avoid. It's surprisingly difficult!

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

  1. If you can learn to do something yourself, don't hire someone: just do it.
  2. Draw a firm distinction between doing work and worrying about work. The latter is useless but easy to fall prey to.
  3. When you explain to customers what you're building, the response you're looking for is, "Where can I buy that?"

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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