#EmiTogether: Halle Tecco, Founder of Natalist on building an unbreakable partnership through overcoming challenges

Our interviewee today: We’re excited to have Halle Tecco, Founder & CEO of Natalist, a fertility startup that sells doctor-recommended products and connects women with basic fertility support and education. Previously she founded early-stage digital health venture fund Rock Health, and was an Adjunct Professor at Columbia Business School. Halle started her career working in finance and business development roles at Intel and Apple. She received her MBA from Harvard Business School and is currently pursuing her MPH from Johns Hopkins. 

Halle has offered the Emi community, 10% off products at Natalist.com – type in EmiTogether at checkout to receive the discount.

What has been a big challenge in your relationship, and what have you done to work on it?

My husband and I both started companies around the same time, twice. The first time around (me with Rock Health, him with Cloudera), we were working 80-100 hour weeks and didn’t make as much time for each other, family, or friends as we should have. All we did was work, or talk about work. 

The second time around as founders (me with Natalist, him with Related Sciences), we vowed to do it differently. We spent a lot of time preparing and discussing our goals, both professionally and personally.  We promised to keep work compartmentalized, and make room for our family, our hobbies, and our health. We both leave work at 5 and rarely work on weekends. We also have a standing date night and take at least one couple’s trip each year. Our relationship and our careers are much better because of it!

What’s your favorite date activity?

100% of our date nights revolve around food and our favorite restaurants.

What are 3 things you want your children to say about the relationship you have with your partner? 

First, that we put family above all else. Second, that we show love and compassion, especially when it’s most difficult. Third, that we are a strong, unbreakable team. 

What’s your favorite song together and why?

John Legend’s Slow Dance came out around the time we started dating, and we used it as our first dance at our wedding, so it will always be one of our songs.

What is the biggest challenge you have overcome as a couple?

Infertility. It took us over four years and a good deal of science to become parents.  I had good months and bad months, and he was always my rock (and a very deft shot-giver).   I see now that our journey worked out as it should have. Our relationship grew stronger as we learned patience and how to work together as a team—skills that have translated well to parenting!