Male CEO Leaves Job for 'Amazing' Wife, Family

Max Schireson: 'Life is about choices'

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 7, 2014 6:30 PM CDT
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email

(Newser) – Until now, the public debate of work-vs-family has focused more on female workers than male ones. So Max Schireson's decision to demote himself at a major software company and move back home with his family is turning a few heads, Jezebel reports. "Friends and colleagues often ask my wife how she balances her job and motherhood," wrote Schireson in a blog post. "Somehow, the same people don't ask me." His 19-month stint at the helm of MongoDB in New York City has been successful—he helped turn it "into a billion-dollar business," Fortune notes—but the time away from his wife, children, and puppy in Palo Alto, Calif., has proved just too hard. Among his reasons:

  • "I have 3 wonderful kids at home, aged 14, 12 and 9, and I love spending time with them."
  • His "amazing wife" has "an important career" as a doctor and Stanford professor. "I love her, I am forever in her debt for finding a way to keep the family working despite my crazy travel. I should not continue abusing that patience."
  • "On pace to fly 300,000 miles this year," he's missed a lot of family fun plus his son's minor surgery and the puppy being hit by a car. A turning point came when his plane made an emergency landing in Tucson and he slept through the whole thing, he tells Forbes: "In that moment, I realized, 'What am I doing?'"
  • "Will that cost me tens of millions of dollars someday?" he writes. "Maybe. Life is about choices. "
Reactions on his blog are mostly enthusiastic, but Jezebel notes that a woman couldn't do this without people getting concerned. On a positive note, Fortune says it may be a "step towards leveling the playing field for top executives, regardless of their gender." One reaction was definitely favorable—a blog comment from Schireson's daughter: "I'm glad you will be able to spend more time with us at home. yayyyyy."

« Prev« Prev | Next »Next » Slideshow
To report an error on this story, notify our editors.

Other Sites We Like:   The Street   |   HitFix   |   PopSugar Tech   |   RealClear   |   24/7 Wall St.   |   Barstool Sports   |   OK!   |   Owler