Thursday, May 18, 2006

Caitlin, the Sales Manager

Took a break last night from the weekly activities to have dinner with my wife, Caitlin. Of all the interests and hobbies that the start-up has required me to put on pause, my relationship with her is the one that I refuse to sacrifice. Simply put, she comes first.

If you don’t have your spouse on board and you are thinking about starting a company, stop! Get spousal support immediately, or don’t do it. I can’t imagine not having Caitlin’s support. As we have moved forward over the past two months from my March 18th epiphany and commitment to now, she has been an integral pillar in the whole affair.

Caitlin has as much at stake as me, and failure to recognize that would be extremely self-centered. There are serious life repercussions resulting from starting a company. Here’s a quote from Phaedra Hise’s Confessions of an Entrepreneur’s Wife (

“When I think about those start-up days, I realize I've given up far more than I had planned. Years of writing, of books and magazine articles I could have published. I lost a friendship, an airplane, a lot of money. I sacrificed years of socializing that could have sparked new friendships. I lament the toll on Bill's health, and Lily had no choice in giving up precious years with her father.”

Believe me when I say that 2006 sacrifices like this are no problem, but eventually the pendulum must swing back. That’s why growing enough to bring another senior team member on board is critical… This company must become more than me.

My research yields that part of being a successful entrepreneur is being accountable to someone. I do have a an entrepreneur buddy that I have three calls a week with to make sure weekly activities are progressing, but ultimately we have agreed that until things get further along Caitlin is in the sales manager role. On Saturday’s she gets the pipeline report. And, oh yeah, we do have a couple of major purchases in mind for when the company is firmly established. The first one is Caitlin’s choice, a reward for her patience and support, which she has given so freely. Thank you for believing in me, Caitlin.

OK, back to business. We have an accountant, and that is good! Everything else seems to be status quo, new business is progressing (client/project #5 in today), though summer is coming, and Washington tends to shut down during the dog days…

Confession: My favorite part of marketing this new entity is writing the blog entries. One of my hobbies is writing short stories and novels, and this activity has been a satisfying replacement.


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