I really need to read and learn about startup entrepreneurs that have a family, and are managing to take the big risk and do this crazy thing called "start-up". As I see it from my point of view ( 2 kids and wife + mortgage) it's an impossible task.
Thanks for sharing!
My father started his ventures after he "retired". Even with 3 kids (we were only teens then), he kick some major butt. Before he died, I asked him how he managed to pull off the things he did. His advice was: "it is amazing what you can do, if you have built a safety net and don't give a s**t about falling". Wise man. For majority of his career before his "retirement" he always had side projects.
One of my former CEOs had 4 kids. During his younger years he saved up some money, bought couple of rental properties. When he started his venture with a co-founder (let me remind you, he had 4 kids), I think his success was partly due to that rental property income and the fact his wife took a part time job to make sure he could just swing for the fences. For the last 4 years company has been pulling in $15MM plus.
Most entrepreneurs with 2+ kids and wives who still talk to them I know have side income to take care of what is at home, their wives work at least part time, and they are not engaging in any BS startups. They are doing real businesses that create real revenue from day one. No building anything before there is $1 from a customer.
Don't do it without having another income stream. We tried it and it wasn't good for us.
I started a venture with a one year old child and a wife while keeping my full time job.
It is quite a challenge. It is certainly a strain on personal life, day job and the family relationships. My eating habits are horrible and I gained too much weight.
I still have not made the jump to be full time on my venture.
You need to talk to your family about this and be realistic about what it is like. It is certainly possible, but you have to keep your priorities and also manage the expectations.
Mixergy.com is great for entrepreneurial stories
It is do-able. I started my first company when I found out my husband and I were divorcing. I had been a stay-at-home mom for some time before that, so it was quite the challenge: re-entering the work force, moving cross-country, adjusting to single motherhood, and accommodating my son's special needs, all while starting a business.
I should probably blog about this some day, but I haven't yet. In the mean time, a few of the most important lessons I've learned:
Believe it or not, once these things become part of your routine, they aren't distractions. Your business is just an accepted part of their lives. My 7yo just spoke at a local technical conference a couple of weeks ago, having built his own web site on the technology I use!
I hope that helps -- I'll keep my eye out in case you post any more questions on the subject. :)
Been in that boat. Wait, I'm still in it.
Basically, as Susan said, you need another income stream. In my case, that stream is consulting, which pays quite well by the hour, so I don't need to work 40 hours a week on that to have a level of income I'm comfortable (plus getting that many hours can be quite hard at first, at least in my field). The rest of the time I work on my idea, and as it increases in its ability to pay my bills, I decrease my consulting accordingly.
There's a website devoted to consulting, and many of the consultants on the site are spending portions of their day working on their pet ideas - Advice Tap. If you're going to start consulting, you may want to check it out for support, ideas, and answers to questions particular to the consulting industry. (I am not affiliated with the site, but I do use it.)
It is challenging, but pressure is a good way to push yourself outside your boundaries and grow. I would recommend that you have a couple of years worth of savings before you start out. Even with that, it will stil be stressful.
nice stuff...I agree with all of it...safety net definitely helps a great deal to alleviate day to day pressures of normalizing your home life. Certainly enough stress trying to launch a business without additional pressures of "life" coming into play.