Military Spouse Entrepreneurship
Military spouses are resilient and resourceful. That's because you are often called upon to face and overcome circumstances unique to military life, including PCSing, deployments and the challenges of juggling home, family, career and service. And with so many military spouses facing underemployment, it’s no wonder you may want to start your own business. This guide offers some helpful resources and considerations before getting started.
Military Spouse-Owned Business Resources
If you’re a military spouse thinking of starting your own business, you’ll be happy to know there are a number of resources you can turn to, with organizations, networks, training and communities that understand exactly where you’re coming from and how you can reach your goals.
First Command was founded in 1958 by a retired military officer who was passionate about helping service members and their families strengthen their financial security. Today, four out of five of our Advisors are military spouses or veterans. We offer careers that allow you to build your own business and choose your own schedule while helping other military families plan for their financial future. Our offices are located near bases around the world so you can keep your career in motion while you PCS. We also offer ongoing support, training and resources to help your business grow.
Founded by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Hiring Our Heroes is a nationwide initiative to help veterans, transitioning service members and military spouses find meaningful business opportunities. The organization offers resources, workshops, events, funding and ongoing networking opportunities.
Created by a group of U.S. active duty military spouses, the National Military Spouse Network is a networking, mentoring and professional development organization that allows military spouses to connect, share experiences and develop strategies for starting a business, building a career and finding balance.
Originally founded in 1969 by a small group of military wives, the National Military Family Association has since grown into one of the largest advocacy organizations for military families, consulting with Congress, the White House and the Department of Defense. They also offer resources, training and support for military spouses looking to start their own business or develop a meaningful new career.
The DoD’s Military Spouse Employment Partnership (MSEP) creates connections between military spouses seeking career opportunities and private sector companies who are actively hiring. The MSEP currently partners with over 400 organizations.
Started in 2009 by a small group of military spouses, Blue Star Families now includes over 150,000 members and works with over 1.5 million military family members each year. The organization conducts research, community outreach and career and business development initiatives.
Since 1941, the USO has been helping military members and their families stay connected and supported. Today, the organization offers a wide variety of programs designed specifically for military spouses, including networking events, workshops and resources for career guidance and entrepreneurship.
As one of the world’s largest military community networks, the Association of Defense Communities was founded with the goal of building relationships between communities and nearby bases to provide support for military families. Today the organization offers assistance with schooling, housing, health care, careers and military spouse entrepreneurs.
Inspired by the World War II icon, Rosie the Riveter, The Rosie Network is a non-profit organization founded in 2011 with the goal of supporting service members and military spouses looking to become small business owners. Today the organization offers a complete range of training, mentoring, networking and resources.
Started in 2014, The Milspo Project has since grown to become the largest military spouse-member business organization in the country. With hundreds of members associated with all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces, the organization offers resources, workshops, community support, training, partnership programs and mentorship.
Business Considerations for Military Spouses
Military spouses face unique employment and entrepreneurship challenges. PCSing can often mean putting a business on the backburner, and managing finances and family often falls squarely on the spouse’s shoulders during deployment.
Starting a new business can be incredibly daunting. Having a network of likeminded individuals who support your goals, offer advice and understand your vision can make a huge difference.
Becoming an entrepreneur means staying competitive by educating yourself on the latest resources and training. Finding this information, however, can be difficult for any new business owner.
Frequent relocations are a part of military life, which means that a business often has to travel with you. Starting a business that requires an office, retail space or even local employees can be problematic. Organizations like First Command provide access to hundreds of offices near military installations and can minimize the physical hassle of relocating.
The life of a military spouse includes sudden demands and shifts in responsibility. Any business that you choose to start will have to allow for flexibility when priorities change.
Military Spouse Employment with First Command
If you’re a military spouse interested in a career that allows you to be in charge of your schedule and will transition with you as you PCS, then becoming a Financial Advisor with First Command might be right for you. We offer careers that can easily move with you and your family. Our hiring managers and recruiting specialists are trained specifically to work with military spouses.
At First Command, we offer you a place to put your passion for service to work, the training and support to launch a career and grow a business, rewards to build your personal financial security, and the opportunity to advance your career in leadership positions at the district, division and corporate level.
We also offer a suite of opportunities for those who may be interested in working at one of our offices across the U.S. and overseas. Becoming a First Command Administrative Assistance or Office Manager can be a steppingstone to a larger opportunity with our team.
Best of all, you can continue to stay connected to the military community in a meaningful way. You will add value to the lives of members of the military community by helping clients pursue their financial objectives and goals.
Get Started With First Command
If you’re a military spouse interested in putting your entrepreneurial spirit to work with us, we’d love to hear from you. To get started, click the button below.