Justin Schulte (SOM ’19) had entered the Yale School of Management MBA program to discover how he could leave school on an entrepreneurial career track. He eschewed the traditional job search during the second year of his Yale MBA program. Instead, Schulte focused on launching a search fund — a vehicle where he could buy a business with approximately $2 million in EBITDA and immediately become the CEO of the acquired company.
Of course, deciding to be an entrepreneur was not a decision that solely impacted Justin. His wife, Samantha, and his three children were all along for the journey too. Aspiring entrepreneurs sometimes failed to take full account of how their decisions would impact the entire family. Often, spouses or partners would seem to be watching the same movie, with very different interpretations and feelings about the identical show.
The case contains responses from Justin Schulte and his wife Samantha, who agreed to answer a set of identical questions on their views and perspectives about Justin’s career choice just before the Yale SOM graduation. These are the types of questions likely to come up for other entrepreneurs making a choice about their next steps, and how their decisions will play out with their own families. Some entrepreneurial couples have the foresight to explore these interesting, and potentially raw, conversations, and some do not. Aligning expectations and aspirations between partners in an entrepreneurial marriage can attenuate ambiguity and stress in an inherently nebulous and anxiety filled path.
Publication Date: 07/14/2019
Suggested Citation: A.J. Wasserstein, "I Said, You Said: He’s the Entrepreneur - How Two Partners in a Marriage View the Entrepreneurial Search Fund Journey," Yale SOM Case 19-019, July 14, 2019
Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Leadership & Teamwork, Work-life balance, family, marriage
Teaching Note: No