Corporate SOHO Hybrid Model, is it new?

The guys over at the Small Biz Labs Blog, one of my daily information sources, has an article on “The Shifting Career Blog and Corporate Hybrids“. In it they make the following statement:

“…. One of the comments to the post mentions dual career couples who use one of the partner’s corporate job to provide benefits and income while the other partner starts a business. We call this the corporate soho hybrid model, and discuss it in our forecast reports. This model is very common in Silicon Valley and gets around many of the risks associated with starting a business or becoming a free agent.”

To me this reads like the so called “corporate soho hybrid model” is a new development in small business activities and that it is more often seen in Silicon Valley, than anywhere else. I would very much like to see any evidence for any of those statements? Or is it just that we did not notice in the past, because nobody cared about small business and start-up business, like SOHO-, SME, SMB-, Micro-, Lifestyle-, Home-, DIY-, Hobby-, Boomer- or Personal business, like professional, contractors, freelancer, self-employed, sole-trader and virtual assistants?

My grand-parents, (German) on my mothers side, and my wife’s grand-parents, (English) on her mothers side, did exactly the same. As it happens both ladies ran a shop, while the husbands stayed in employment.

The same can be said for many of my clients, one partner works and the other starts a small business, often more for the reason that employment is more volatile, than a small business run on bootstrapping techniques and not with world domination in mind. I believe a substantial number of small business are started by couples with the aim, that both will work in the business in the end.

By the way, bootstrapping – another new age small business term I often use – was something everybody in business did 50 years ago, there was no other way. VCs, angel-investores, etc. where not available and obviously not needed, but then I doubt that you need them today in 95% of cases.

The moral in this story, just because we give something a fancy new name, does not mean it is a new trend, this one is IMO certainly not. ST.

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