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8 dad entrepreneurs share how they balance work and life

This father’s day, we salute dad entrepreneurs who share with us how they prioritize their family.



father daughter

father daughter

Happy father’s day, dad entrepreneurs

If you are the child of an entrepreneur, you’ve watched your parent work their fingers to the bone (sometimes literally, other times figuratively), and you have admiration for his grit and determination.

The next generation of dad entrepreneurs is here, and their take on the work/life balance conundrum is very different. Tech startup founders, inventors, and business men of today involve their children, care about every waking moment they can spend with their kids, and go above and beyond to make them a priority.

Eight fathers tell us below how they balance their work with their family life, and we salute them this father’s day:

Kevin McCarthy – founder and CEO of McCarthy Music

“My daughter Sophia, 6, has been intimately involved in the development of my company’s first product, the Illuminating Piano. Since Sophia was 4, she’s been playing occasionally on various prototypes. It’s been a great way for us to connect about what I do and it’s inspired her to want to invent all sorts of things. I think trying to involve your children in your business is a somewhat overlooked aspect of work/life balance, but it gives them a much better understanding of what you actually do. I also work 7 a.m.-4 p.m., which gives us an additional hour or two each night to spend together.”

Marc Gorlin – founder and CEO of Roadie, Inc.

“Anytime I have a decision to make, I ask myself  ‘What’s most important?’ I do this at Roadie all the time. When put through this simple filter, questions get, well, simpler. For example, last week, I had the choice of being five minutes late to a meeting or ordering flowers for my daughter’s debut as the Dragon in Shrek the Musical. The meeting could wait.”

Edward McCloskey, founder of WaterWipes

“Ensure that, as a father with kids of teenage or younger ages, you make sure that you allow enough time in your life to spend regular ‘family’ time with them and to be around, available and interested in their day-to-day lives. It is way too easy to get sucked up into the ‘thrill of the chase’ when building your business, but your kids will have grown up and moved on before you know it, and you don’t want to miss out on their developmental years. So the challenge as an entrepreneurial dad is to both do the best you can in growing your business and also make sure to spend regular quality time with your children. It’s as easy – and as difficult – as that.”

Peter Waisnor, Vice President, Tenba

“Be home for dinner, be in the moment and arrive with excitement. I travel about 25% of the year, much of it internationally, and I could easily travel twice that amount if I went everywhere I was asked to go. To minimize my time away, I often take red-eye flights home so that I don’t lose a full day for travel. And when I arrive home, no matter how little I have slept for the time that I was away, I arrive ready to do whatever my son wants to do. My son is very excited to see me and hang out when I return, so I don’t want to spoil it by letting him know that I’m exhausted.”

Sean Folkson, Founder, NightFood, Inc.

“Get your kids on board: It might not be possible, depending on your business, but my both my kids love NightFood, so they understand when Daddy has to work late or on weekends. Whenever we are in a mall with a GNC store, my 5 year-old Benny wants to go in and do a sales call. We’ve even featured him in some promotional videos and ads we’ve done. He tells his friends and teachers about the bars. He feels a sense of ownership, which makes me proud and makes things easier. Also, try your best to leave work at work and understand your priorities.”

Roger Wilson, Owner, GermBloc

“Keeping perspective on what truly matters can easily change when you stretch your mind to think outside the box and create innovative products that you become emotionally attached to. Whether your new idea becomes a success or failure, you want to maintain your priorities realizing that having faith and family will last forever and your awesome new idea will not give you true fulfillment long term.”

Jon Sumroy, creator of mifold

“It’s never easy being an entrepreneur – bringing something new to the world. But there are two huge myths that make people think being a ‘daddy entrepreneur’ is particularly hard: the myths that only young entrepreneurs can succeed and that being a “daddy entrepreneur” requires life/work balance. To combat these myths I suggest: be a good entrepreneur (do your research!), merge life and work, commit to the very important things, bring your kids with you to business activities, and create kiddie entrepreneurs.”

Gregory Schern, Founder of Ogden Made

“My success is wholly dependent upon my family’s support – any success at being a ‘dad entrepreneur’ relies upon understanding that long days, and extended periods away from home are not possible without a great family support network. The best way for that to happen is involve them in the big ideas and let them come to work, meet the team, and share the success. Also, time management is the toughest battle – and don’t forget that your employees and team members have families, too!”


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Business Entrepreneur

Is this normal (you wonder about your business)?

(ENTREPRENEURIALISM) It can be lonely not being able to openly ask potentially embarrassing questions about your business – there’s a way to do it anonymously…




Entrepreneurialism is wildly rewarding – you are fully in control of the direction of your company, and you’re solving the world’s problems. But it’s also isolating when you’re not sure if what you’re experiencing is normal.

Sure, there’s Google, news networks (like ours), and professional connections to help you navigate, but sometimes you just want to know if something simple you’re seeing is normal.

Is Instagram Stories really where it’s at? Probably not if you’re a consultant.

Is it normal for an employee to attempt to re-negotiate their salary on their first day? Nope, but how do you keep the desirable employee without being bullied into new terms?

Do all entrepreneurs spend their first year in business as exhausted as a new parent? Sometimes.

You have questions, and together, we can share our experiences.

We have a brand new Facebook Group that is already wildly engaging, active, and you’d be amazed at how selflessly helpful people are – and we invite you to be one of them.

Want to anonymously ask a question about something you’re unsure is normal or not?

Click here to submit your question, and we’ll select as many as possible to discuss in the Facebook Group!

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Business Entrepreneur

Amazon on a collision course with politicians as they strengthen their monopoly

(BUSINESS) E-commerce has come a long way in the last decade, specifically led by Amazon, but are their controlling ways putting them on a collision course with regulators?




In March, Amazon stopped replenishing weekly purchase orders for tens of thousands of vendors in a move that has stirred up some trouble. The tech giant has once flexed its power over first-party sellers over their platform. And it’s not the first time.

Amazon originally sent out to vendors as an automated message citing the hold up in orders as a technical glitch. The following day, vendors were told the change was permanent. The affected vendors were categorized as making $10 million or less in sales volume per year and not having managers at Amazon. Vendors selling specialized goods that were difficult to ship were also a factor.

The effects can have remarkable effects on the market as Amazon’s algorithms decide who is able to sell what to whom via their near-ubiquitous platform. According to John Ghiorso, the CEO of Orca Pacific, an Amazon agency for consultation and manufacturers representatives, the decision is driven by financial data such as total revenue, profitability, and catalog size.

In a response from an Amazon spokesperson, the change was made in order to improve value, convenience, and selection for customers. The mass termination of purchase orders and the delayed response from Amazon herald the transition to the One Vendor system, putting vendors in an exclusive relationship with Amazon. This system will merge the current Seller Central and Vendor Central.

Amazon’s message is loud and clear: they will do what’s in their best interest to mitigate the market for their convenience. One may be reminded of the anti-trust lawsuit against Microsoft in 2001.

The lack of warning didn’t do them any favors either.

While smaller businesses need to change for Amazon’s program, first-party business will revolve around larger brands like Nike with whom Amazon is maintaining a relationship.

Despite the streamlined platform Amazon is going for, the company wields power over vendors and customers alike. Capitalism is one thing, but monopolies are a whole other ball game, and politicians are finally paying attention.

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Business Entrepreneur

Culture Codes is the guide you need for company culture questions

(BUSINESS ENTREPRENEUR) One of the biggest sellers of a company to a prospective employee or customer is their culture. Culture Codes has compiled some the biggest companies cultures in convenient decks for you to study and align with.



culture codes

Organizational culture is a hot button of conversation. While a variety of definitions exist, one way of defining Culture is the way businesses exist – a summary of values, rituals, and organizational mythology that helps employees make sense of the organization they work in.

Organizational cultures are often reflected in Mission, Vision, and Value statements of organizations.

What many entrepreneurs or new organization struggle with as well, is how to create a culture from the ground up. What kinds of statements and values do they advocate? What are areas of focus? Who are our competitors and what can we do to create a service, product, or quality advantage?

Building a strong culture can be challenging, but a good place to start is looking at the best cultures around.

A new resource by Tettra, Culture Codes, has everything you could want to know on different companies their cultures available for you to study up.

Over 40 companies employing over 280,000 employees have created culture decks and collected core values and mission statements. Companies like Spotify, Netflix, LinkedIn, and NASA have all contributed information.

This information is great for young companies or entrepreneurs to start building a schema about what kind of culture they want to create.

Or existing established companies can look towards peers and competitors and help decide what statements they want to engage culture change on.

For job seekers, Tettra can help potential employees gauge if they are a fit for an organization, or discover that maybe an organization they dream about working for has a culture they may not jive with. And perhaps most valuably, transparently showing off your culture and allowing it to be compared means that organizations can better compete in the talent market.

Recruiters should be obsessed with talking about culture – because it keeps people in the door.

The reasons why people leave employment: work/ life balance, poor treatment, lack of training, or relationship issues with a supervisor or boss; in many ways are a by-product of organizational culture. If you want to compete in the talent market, make culture a selling point and show it off in everything you do.

Even consumer’s benefit from learning about an organization’s culture – values that indicate a commitment to excellence in ethics make consumers feel good about supporting an organization.

It pays to have a good culture. I encourage you to head over to and see how companies like Etsy are keeping it real, every day.

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