Military Spouses in Entrepreneurship

There are many different subgroups within the umbrella of ‘entrepreneur.’ A few examples would be social entrepreneurs, tech entrepreneurs, young entrepreneurs, and, most recently, military spouse entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurship within the community of military spouses has been growing for a good reason. The careers of the husbands and wives of those in the military are usually put on hold due to constant movement and the responsibilities of caring for their children as single parents. Entrepreneurship has given these individuals a way to delve back into their preferred career paths from remote locations.

Of course, being a military spouse with a business to run is not easy. Business owners have to deal with the challenge of managing a remote workforce, and engaging their target audiences, in the midst of busy days and weeks. This is why nonprofits such as The MilSpo Project have been formed. They educate military spouses on how to manage their time, and provide support to any who require it.

Very recently, an article came out in Forbes about the company R. Riveter, which was begun by two military spouses. Lisa Bradley and Cameron Cruse founded this company of handmade products in lieu of taking jobs below their experience levels because their husbands were in the military. R. Riveter is a company based on female empowerment, and Cruse and Bradley are making it work in spite of their busy schedules.

The amazing thing about this company, besides the high-quality handbags, is that it works to employ other military spouses as well. Once Bradley and Cruse realized they would have to put their professional careers on hold because their husbands were in the military, they wanted to make a company to help themselves and other women. All of the products of R. Riveter are handmade by military spouses who live in different locations in the country.

Additionally, of course, everything in R. Riveter can be accomplished in a remote location. Bradley and Cruse have formed the company with the knowledge that their employees will be moved around, so they have made everything flexible. Furthermore, all of their materials are made from recycled military equipment. Even their products are the embodiment of the life of a military spouse.

In order to be a happily employed military spouse, a creative business model has to be put into play. Bradley and Cruse realized this early on in their careers, however I doubt they will be the last. I expect to see a rise in the military spouse entrepreneur community as more people realize they do not have to give up their career goals for the career of their spouse.