Working women know the dilemma well: How can you start a family without torpedoing your career? America’s stingy parental-leave policies, platinum-expensive daycare, and a business culture that pays lip service to work-life balance but not much more, are enough to make any frustrated parent ask: Could you blaze a more accommodating career path on your own?
The answer is yes, but it takes guts, planning, and patience to pursue this path successfully. Consider the Esoteric Food Company, a pickling business founded by two moms, Mara King and Willow King (no relation), in Boulder, Colorado. Their pickle brand, Zuké--the name derives from the Japanese term for pickled vegetables, zukemono--includes delicacies like juniper-scented Napa cabbage and a potent, earthy concoction of beets, dulse seaweed, and kale.