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Startup Life: Surviving and Thriving in a Relationship with an Entrepreneur Hardcover


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Startup Life: Surviving and Thriving in a Relationship with an Entrepreneur + Startup Communities: Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Your City + Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (January 14, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118443640
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118443644
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #205,088 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

From the Author: 10 Quick Tips to Incorporate into Your Entrepreneurial Relationship Today

Brad Feld
Brad Feld
  1. Never Schedule High Priorities Activities or Deadlines on Fridays: Doing so will likely create a scenario that drifts into Friday night, Saturday, and then Sunday. Always be realistic about the ebb and flow of the work cycle.
  2. Don't Bring Up Charged Topics at Bedtime: Your bedroom should be a sanctuary and a safe haven from the demands of the world. Never start a conflict when your you and your partner are in bed and dozing off to sleep.
  3. Laugh and Laugh Often: We believe you can never hug each other enough, say you love each other too much, or laugh too often.
  4. Apologize and Forgive: Practice apologizing when you hurt your partner's feelings. Offer forgiveness when your partner has been careless with your feelings. Know that you will try to be your best self but that you will often fail and will need to hone your apology skills.
  5. Have a Life Dinner Once a Month: Make a reservation right now at one of your favorite restaurants. Go out--just the two of you. Buy your significant other a gift. Turn off your cell phones and hand them to the other person. Spend a long slow dinner enjoying each other's company.
  6. Set Limits on Technology: You do not need to do just one more e-mail right before bedtime. You really don't. You need to sleep well and restore yourself and reset your brain chemistry during a nice night of rest. Those who need to take breaks from technology are often the least likely to do it.
  7. Live Where You Want to Live: Pick the place where you want to live and build your life around it. Our contributors to the book, Mark and Pam Solon, say "We believe it's important for young people embarking on their lives to realize that geography matters in your happiness quotient and that it can even out--weigh the highest-paying job opportunities."
  8. Life Is a Marathon, Not a Sprint: Another contributor to the book, Dave Jilk, says "If I could send my younger self a message from the future, it would tell me to treat my career more like a marathon than a sprint."
  9. Commit to Each Other's Dreams: "Recognizing that one's partner is pursuing their dream, they are satisfied down to their soul and, in so being satisfied, are that much more alive. That level of aliveness is a gift few partners can ever give, and successful couples recognize this," say Tim Enwall and Hillary Hall.
  10. Always Answer His or Her Calls! While it might seem like a small gesture, the cumulative impact of doing so on a regular basis shows your partner they matter to you.

Review

"There have been many thousands of pages dedicated to successful entrepreneurship, but rarely a word spoken about leading a successful entrepreneurial life until the release of “Startup Life.” In what I consider to be the first must-read book of the year, Amy Batchelor and Brad Feld artfully tackle the subject with an astonishing level of transparency and authenticity. No subject is off-limits, including emotional struggles, sexual intimacy, financial decision-making, and family planning."
—Forbes, 1/23/2013

“One of the most appealing aspects of Startup Life is that Brad and Amy are not dogmatic. They offer various suggestions from their own lives, as well as vignettes provided by other startup couples, which Brad believes make the book more impactful and balanced…Although the book’s ideal audience is an entrepreneurial couple on the front-end of their relationship, even veteran entrepreneurs can learn something from Startup Life.” 
—Forbes


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Customer Reviews

My wife of 12 years and I recently read this book.
bbrooke
This is a must read for anyone starting a business or thinking about it.
Lisa Abeyta
The book reads well - writing style is friendly and easy to read.
Laura Yecies

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By C Lee on August 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Having been through a couple of startups already, I wish I'd had this book before. Amy and Brad share a tremendous number of practical and useful techniques that they have developed over the years. From simple ideas like having four minutes in the morning to the life meeting once a month, these are practical suggestions that can help any relationship and not just startup relationships. My wife and I developed some similar techniques such as regular "business" meetings and time management buffer to compensate for lack of teleportation. The writing style is clear and easy to read which makes the book go by swiftly.

The book also has dozens of short vignettes from friends of Brad and Amy which provides some nice alternative points of view. After reading them you almost feel like you were dropped into the startup world of Boulder.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Eric Klein on August 25, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I like so many others am solidly in this book's target demographic. I've been lucky enough to be a serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, and happily married for almost 20 years. Having said that, it hasn't all been easy. My wife and I were separated for almost a year as we difficultly learned many of the lessons in this book. If I could go back in time and hand this book to my younger self, it might have saved us much angst. I really appreciated the openness of all the contributors and will be recommending it within the founder community of my hardware accelerator.

It feels to me as if there are three life phases you can read this book in:

1 - As a younger entrepreneur with less relationship experience who absorbs some of this material but now has a permanent pointer for when they really need it in the future.
2 - As an entrepreneurial couple in the midst of relationship issues. So many of the things that were pointed out seem obvious now, but in apex of my marital challenges, this book would have been a godsend. Or a smack in the head!
3 - As more mature entrepreneurs who glean tips and reminders to stay on course, plus a desire to pass the book onto fellow entrepreneurs and couples in phases 1 and 2. I'm working hard, as an example, to incorporate shorter Qx vacations for my wife and I. In my limited experience with Qx, they really spur creativity and a remembrance of why life is awesome.

The one phrase from the book I can't get out of my head is "you can always make more money but you can't make more time"

It is ironic that I finished the book traveling on a business trip, but I couldn't wait to get home.

Brad and Amy did something brave in writing this book. They were open and honest.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Brent Cutcliffe on July 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Super practical book filled with lots of advice with specific tactics tailored to common relationship hurdles. Each chapter addresses a separate topic so you can readily skip back and forth based on interest. After the intro it quickly became a page-turner as it touched on many situations I have personally experienced. I immediately recommended it to my co-founder who a few days later encouraged his spouse to read it too.

A much needed reference that spells out potential pitfalls and provides realistic approaches to deal with some of the most difficult issues in an entrepreneur's personal life.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Adam J. Briggs on July 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It gives a lot of general advice for keeping couples together while owning a business or extremely busy at work.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Bart Lorang on January 20, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Length: 1:27 Mins
I recently read Brad and Amy's book.

This is a no-nonsense, practical approach for Startup Entrepreneurs and their significant others. It should be required reading for all entrepreneurs - and for that matter, anyone who struggles with Work-Life Balance.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Noam Wasserman on May 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Halfway through Startup Life, married couple Brad Feld and Amy Batchelor suggest that, "Being in a relationship with an entrepreneur is hard, possibly harder than being an entrepreneur" (p. 78). This hard-learned gem of wisdom is richly conveyed throughout their excellent read.

Through their own real-life examples, and those of others, Brad and Amy drive home the message that a founder's spouse or life partner is the true cofounder, the one without whose support and contributions the startup could be dead or might have never been born to begin with. Startup Life is an invaluable resource not only for showing life partners their likely path ahead, but also for opening the eyes of the founders themselves to the stresses their partners are likely to experience.

I appreciate how the book tackles the full range of the entrepreneurial journey, beginning with the initial decision to leap (e.g., when motivated by "not wanting to risk a life in a cubicle"), and culminating with a successful exit. However, their clear-eyed presentation of these events highlights the unexpected challenges that can accompany even the biggest success. For instance, the authors poignantly describe the aftermath of Brad's successful exit from one of his startups as "the entrepreneur's equivalent of post-partum depression." Far from the jubilation we would expect to see, Amy and Brad's raw reflection offers a sobering, honest view of the dark underbelly of what many expect to be the glorious Promised Land. Along the way, Brad and Amy impart a wide variety of practical lessons and suggestions, such as keeping a weekly digital "Shabbat" in which they are offline each Saturday.
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