We had the good fortune of connecting with Matthew Hall and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Matthew, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
My journey to start a business was quite unexpected but very natural to who I am. I never studied business but rather psychology and physical science, and my hyperactive curiosity and somewhat imprudent risk taking has become conducive to my career as an entrepreneur. Over the years these traits, for better or for worse, have led me to fixate on various business ideas and run with them until they reach their logical conclusion.
When I was in college, I liked to work out and understood some science, so why not work as a personal trainer? By guiding and supporting clients to their health goals I realized I enjoyed teaching. This realization led me to start my first small business. An independent math and science tutoring service for college and high school students. After a couple years of growing clientele, I wanted to innovate. However at the time I was REALLY into chemistry and transitioned my tutoring service into something I called “Covalent Tutors”. I performed radical, but somewhat sketchy, experiments while explaining the chemistry behind it.For potential liability reasons, this venture came to an end. My wife rightly did not approve of my growing acid/base collection and would no longer allow me to concentrate hydrogen peroxide on our kitchen stove.
After a quick lesson learned, I thought what’s next? Plant dilation of course! I bought a medium steam distillation set from China and began distilling any plant I could get my hands on. Our studio apartment was constantly saturated with lovely but pungent aromas. While I was whipping out essential oils left and right, I concluded the upfront cost of scaling my production would exceed the amount I could get approved for a credit card so it was back to the drawing board.
Although I have been interested in manufacturing, I knew traditional manufacturing machinery has a high upfront cost and the industry is primarily dominated by overseas competitors. So, I thought hard about an advantage I could obtain, and began to redirect my focus towards innovative technology. After weeks of reading tech blogs and going down rabbit holes, I discovered the foundation of my current business, 3D Technology.
In the months following, I bought my first 3D printer, took 3D design classes at my junior college, and scheduled every complimentary 3D technology consult that would see me. Through this process, I formulated my vision to use 3D Technology to make high-quality custom lifestyle products that were affordable and convenient. But where do I start?
I went back into isolation for more research and came to understand that the dental industry is experiencing significant disruption due to this emerging technology. Armed with my new found knowledge, I maxed out 3 credit cards and purchased the required equipment and supplies and set out on an adventure.
After 2 years and a pandemic later, I have been humbled by the process. I entered with only a couple skills in my tool belt and quickly realized the real challenges of starting business. However by keeping a steady head and pressing forward with persistent action my service has slowly fallen into place. This was only possible by learning every aspect of the business myself despite all the natural pitfalls along the way. The process of trying, failing, reassessing, and retrying has developed not just my skills but who I am and seems to the cornerstone of steady progress.
Currently, my business, TruFIT, provides online customers custom-fit night guards, retainers, whitening trays, and sport mouth guards delivered to their door nation-wide. Frankly, This service is an awesome deal for the customer. Customers enjoy the same dental appliances we make for dentists but for over 70% less. Additionally, the other face of my business, TriFigure, provides these same products to dental and orthodontic practices.
The fruition of this dream is too far to mention but everyday I am thankful for the opportunity I have to try. My loving and patient wife, Anna, is the real reason I get to follow this dream and gives me the confidence to say no matter the outcome, I know I am whole because I am with her.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Wherever I am business-wise I have reached it by taking action while somewhat managing the risks. However despite my best efforts, I run into my buddy ol’ pal failure everywhere I go and I am starting to realize he is not half bad and gives great advice if you’re willing to listen. Additionally, stress and doubt ,who always follow failure, tend to not overstay if you just breathe, meditate, and find some peace.
A major lesson I learned, despite being forewarned by mentors, was to focus on improving yourself. Nothing gets easier, you just become better. When I was first told this, I thought to myself, how are self help books going to help me speed up my website up? But after reading a couple books and practicing meditation daily, I am not just more productive and happy but more kind, fair, patient, transparent, and supportive.
TruFIT’s mission is to sustainably serve our customers the highest-quality custom-fit lifestyle products through an affordable and convenient process while providing the greatest possible customer service.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Whenever my friends come to town we go to downtown North Hollywood and drink great beer, and put money on the line for some competitive ping pong and billiards at Brickhouse. Ending the night at Dave’s Chicken for the best chicken sandwiches that you will never regret later. The following morning wake up early and go to Will Rogers beach in Santa Monica to play beach volleyball with an awesome meet-up group that plays there every weekend. Perfect for all levels of play. Lastly we would head down to O’Brien Irish Pub. A Slightly dive bar scene right off of Wilshire Blvd in Santa Monica. Lastly, if you’re lucky enough to be in LA in September or October you have to check out Universal Studios Fright Nights. My wife and I go every year and it is always the best night of the year and I can really respect the commitment to character those monsters have.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
For any success, my wife deserves all the credit. She is the sodium to my chloride. She has been patient with me through this process and bold in managing the associated risks. She gives me the confidence to endure and overcome any challenges along the way. I am truly whole with her.