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Being married to an entrepreneur can be challenging, especially when that isn’t how you’re wired. I’ve heard many spouses voice frustration when it’s taking longer than expected for a startup to become profitable. “why can’t you just get a job?” Is a common question asked when month after month, savings dwindle, along with the hope of a real vacation anytime soon.
Now, imagine that you grow up in a culture where entrepreneurs are rare, and the security of a government or teaching job is the extent of your occupational options?
That is the setting for today’s interview with Brad & Jooyoung Voeller. Since 2001, Brad has launched a series of non-profits and for-profit organizations that facilitate online learning. In his early 20’s, he moved to South Korea to expand his concepts, launching online academies for Korean homeschool families. When he and Jooyoung met and began their relationship, Jooyoung had no idea what it meant to be an entrepreneur. Ever the educator, Brad did his best to inform her, but understanding the ups and downs of the entrepreneur life only came through experience.
At the time of this interview, Brad was in the scaling phase of DCI—Digital Creative Institute. He started the company in 2015 to provide apprenticeships for recent marketing grads, allowing them to gain the experience needed to launch their careers.
Brad & Jooyoung were so gracious to take the time out of their busy schedules to sit down with me and share candidly about their journey in marriage and startup life. Listen in now as they share the story of their evolving partnership and shared passion for changing lives through education.
Mentioned in the podcast:
The Dip, Seth Godin
C12 Group: https://www.c12group.com
To connect with Brad:
4:46 What in the world is an entrepreneur?
12:20 Entrepreneurship requires great teams
18:04 Becoming a team
21:25 Brad feels Jooyoung support & validation
26:08 Hard reality—canceling vacation
31:33 Current business
42:08 What it would mean to “get a job”
46:17 Lessons learned
49:30 Business premortem and postmortem
52:42 Role of advisors
56:25 Fun, friendship, intimacy