Last updated on

The Startup of Life: Motherhood Lessons for Entrepreneurial Success

Everyone says that founding and running a startup is like being a parents and managing a family, let’s connect the dots!

The failure of the copy-paste strategy

The first thing to know is that it’s never quite as you imagine, and the golden rule is that the case histories of others are rarely directly applicable to your own situation. Everyone has their unique path: get over it.

May the enthusiasm be with you

You stay awake at night, seemingly impervious to fatigue. However, over the long haul, the fatigue sets in. To prevent a crisis, clear organizational rules and management processes are essential, especially in the face of work overload. Fair task division rules should be transparent to everyone, and you must be ready to acquire new skills and understand others’ fatigue as if it were your own.

Be newbies

The downside of starting without experience is that you begin by doing things from scratch that you never thought you’d have to do or teach. You can’t take anything for granted, whether seemingly simple tasks or assuming that your collaborators, even those with more experience, know how to handle them.

Cash-flow matters

As for your projected budget for the operation? It’s likely to exceed expectations in the first month. As you progress with your project, you’ll realize how much you need step by step. Initially, the investment tends to be higher, but you’ll learn to manage it better. You’ll understand what to expect and consider the resource needs. You’ll become creative in your financial matrix, and even if you’ve never considered it before, you’ll start thinking about the public support available to you.

Pitch tips: feeling misunderstood

When you pitch your idea, and no one seems to grasp its depth, it can be frustrating. Even if you explain it perfectly, that feeling of not being truly understood creeps in—especially when there’s an opportunity at stake that could fund and sustain your project. Communication rules come into play, but having a go-getter mentality and pushing boundaries as an innovator can help you achieve what you want.

You must shield your project from interference

stay focused, yet maintain external connections to finance the opportunities you want to create.

The true gift of a superhero

Just like frustrations, there are days when you feel invincible. Accept that each day begins and ends, and the next one will come regardless, and the sun will rise anyway.

Timing and achievements

People will tell you there are precise times to accomplish things. However, in reality, every project has its unique growth timeline, often more focused on midterm goals.

Reaching the break-even point is essential

You need to make your project self-sufficient from the start. No exit is required, especially in the case of a family. But make sure that your offspring are strong enough to thrive on their own.

Protecting isn’t always beneficial: the power of open innovation

Innovation thrives when it comes from outside, fueled by contamination and crowdsourcing. Whether you’re nurturing a critical project or managing multiple tasks simultaneously, you learn to ask for what you need from those you expect help from. Recognize the value of relational resources around you—it’s another way to assign worth to your time.

Give importance to people, not context

Your worldview and perception of people around you change. When you pay attention to something that lacks a fancy context, you realize it’s up to you to create opportunities. You start valuing individuals and their potential over the context. Understand that the value proposition matters when the product hits the market, not just when you conceived it.

The effort allocation Tetris

In both cases — whether founding a startup or managing a family — the effort allocation can feel like an ordeal. However, there’s a common thread: the smartest move is to carve out free time for contemplating your next move. Preemptive thinking allows you to choose with clarity.

Trust your instinct

You don’t always need concrete evidence to sense that something might take an undesirable turn. Solutions and their execution must be crystal clear. If you go to bed with lingering concerns, it means tranquility eludes you.

You’re in control

Remember, it’s not the situation that governs you; you must steer it. Every choice you make leads to both surprises and satisfaction, despite the inevitable uncertainties. Decide what to delegate and what you must handle personally. Being in control means giving direction to the situation. Choices you avoid will lead to unforeseen outcomes.

Crazy negotiations

Negotiating with counterparts who have incomprehensible needs and irrational requests requires creativity and engagement. Sometimes, openness alone can signal a willingness to explore new possibilities.

Multiplying ventures?

Can you juggle multiple projects simultaneously? It depends on you. Enthusiasm can turn seemingly impossible feats into reality, but double the experience requires the right motivation. Don’t let yourself be conditioned.

Shift in self-perception

Dramatically, your self-perception transforms. Constructing a framework where you hold decision-making power and flexibility means no one has you in their grip. In past roles, perhaps you felt constrained, adhering to others’ decisions to advance your projects. Now, even with constraints, you find equilibrium. The interplay of family and work, seeing yourself orchestrate multiple facets, reveals your value. More importantly, it empowers you to reject compromises you don’t desire. Your unique creation, irreplaceable and unmatched, strengthens your negotiation stance. There’s no longer a meeting point with those unwilling to allow space for cultivating your value beyond existing commitments.

And finally, the lingering question: will this project be substantial enough to contribute to funding your retirement? ;) That’s a different story…