Entrepreneurs and micro-revolutions
The start-up boom in India arguably surprised everyone, but no one was more surprised than the people who started the small businesses themselves. After the IT bubble broke after recession, the idea of making it on your own in the big bad world of business seemed to be slowly taking off, until it skyrocketed into infamy. Take Flipkart as a success story if you will. But what about the unsung heroes of these start-ups? The partners and spouses of the entrepreneurs who ran these businesses. Whether it is the jugaad that comes with working in a small and young business or the hustle of making ends meet, the start-up industry is an exciting landscape. The partners of these entrepreneurs bear witness to micro-revolutions everyday in the world of business and they occupy a unique seat at the table.
Here are a few things they might relate to
1. There is no 9 to 5 here
Vrushali’s husband owns a social media company. Ever since moving in together, she has actually seen him less, than when they used to hang out after work and live in different houses. But she understands that a start-up requires work hours that are horrid, at least until a stable business model is achieved. Vrushali isn’t alone, however. Every partner of a start-up entrepreneur knows that the working hours in a start-up company will never be just the regular 9 to 5, and they are used to that. Considering the payoffs tend to be better than the 9 to 5 jobs, this seems like a small sacrifice.
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2. Make most of your time
Due to the long working hours, these couples also tend to value their time together more. You’ll see them going on day trips, flying off to small weekend getaways and doing grander things together, and there is a reason why they do so. When a couple like this gets only a few days off, they tend to enjoy them intensely. Unlike people with regular jobs, they don’t get downtime every day to talk about their emotions and future, and these holidays and occasions serve as a crash course in making up for lost time.
3. Pro bono business advisor
If you happen to be with someone who has a start-up, you must’ve thought about starting a business consultancy service at this point because of the amount of advice and contribution you usually give to your partner. From giving ideas, suggesting names and giving feedback, to literally doing errands for them, you have done it all. And all of it without getting a salary. You might have another career, but due to your partner, you now have enough experience of giving business advice to open your own firm.
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4. The stressful times
Anyone who thinks that having a start-up is a bed of roses is hilariously misinformed. Start-ups are essentially like guerrilla warfare, you are trying to champion an idea in the middle of a storm of ideas and you have neither the resources nor the power that big corporations do. This pressure is bound to translate into other parts of the businessperson’s life and their spouses often bear the brunt of it. From facing depressed or annoyed partners to having to console a scared or unmotivated spouse, the partners of the start-up people are sure to go on an emotional ride every week, if not day.
5. What makes them cool
However, all the hustle seems to be worth it when you see your partner excited about their business. Most start-up entrepreneurs would agree that start-ups are nothing but a labour of love and even though they hate the world sometimes, the work that they do is the only one that lights their soul on fire. It is this passion that makes being with these entrepreneurs rewarding. Their love for their work, that passion and dedication can be wonderful to witness and it is heartening to see it so intimately.
6. Work wife work husband
Another unique thing the partners of start-up entrepreneurs face is the work wife/work husband balance. Unless their partner has started the company solo, there’s often a business partner, if not a bunch of partners who are working together. How they gel with each other is often like a working marriage. The roles they play are those of work spouses. To make room for that relationship and find the humour in it can be a task, but most people often find a friend in their partner’s work spouse, as they both can relate to the frustration of being so closely tied to a particular person.