Hey I’m thinking about quitting my job and starting a company. - You
Yeah?…. - You’re Spouse
Not the greatest start towards the path of being your own boss, but for many of us with wives, husbands, and partners, it’s the conversation we need to have before venturing out in to the unknown world of startup life.
When I was first toying around with the idea about leaving the startup company that I was working for, I had told my wife Lacey about it. Her concerns were the normal ones:
It was easy for me to get discouraged and interpret her question asking as politely saying no. It was easy to have someone to blame and say, “My startup dreams are going nowhere because of you!”.
"The only thing in my way was my poor attempts to explain the risks involved in quitting"
This was stupid thinking of course! The only thing in my way was my poor attempts to explain the risks involved in quitting, and mitigating them to the extent of approval. Which in a way is exactly what she was asking in the beginning. What my wife required from me was a financial plan.
What about money? "Well.. if we save up $10,000 dollars, this will allow us to augment your income to pay our monthly bills for an entire year without any income on my side." With that solution, most of her fears were gone. It was a solid financial plan so that there were no worries about money for an entire year.
For icing on the cake, I had explained that I would be relearning app programming during my year off of the 9 to 5, which is one of the two top paying skills an engineer could have. The other? Ruby on Rails, which I already had under my belt from the startup company I was working for.
If it didn't work out, my odds of getting an even higher paying job increased because of my new skill sets. Win Win! Now she was on board.
The art of convincing your spouse to jump on board with your startup plans is to