Choosing a Home Based Business
Whatever our motivations are for choosing a home-based business, it’s important that we do our homework first...it’s not for everybody.
So many of us ‘dream’ of working from home. It may be that we hate the job we’re doing and want to do something we enjoy for a living. It could be to get away from the daily grind of commuting to work and the hassle of getting all ‘dressed up’ to go there in the first place. Perhaps we’re just tired of office politics and backstabbing. We may even love our job but have worked out that we can earn money by doing by working at home or we may even wish to work more flexibly in order to spend more time with the family.
Research your Home Based BusinessWhen you're considering choosing a home based business, it’s crucial to decide what type of business or job you want to pursue. Your old sales colleague may well be doing brilliantly on the phone at home and you think you could do even better but if you’ve got babies, young children or a dog or two running around, is a job on the phone all day at home right for you? Therefore, consider your options wisely.
Take a look at the facilities you have at home. If it’s a job you can run from a PC for the bulk of your working day, do you have all the necessary equipment and some kind of ‘office’ space in which you can lock yourself away for the working day and conduct your home based business?
A few things to consider about this big lifestyle change:
- How many hours will be set aside for working at home and will the number be sufficient to succeed against all your other responsibilities?
- How confident are you that you can keep interruptions to a minimum and both work and family life separate?
- If it involves keeping to set hours at a certain time of day, how disciplined are you to still set your alarm clock of a morning and not be tempted to watch daytime TV and are you strong willed enough to tell friends and family not to call you or turn up on your doorstep during your Working Hours and will they respect that?
- Will your budget and potential income cover all your needs? There’s little point working from home if your expenses are going to outweigh your income each month
- What about the loss of a fixed, steady income? You may be rolling in cash one month but skint the next. Can you cope with irregular earnings?
Still not put off?Good, but don't consider working at home to be an ‘easy option’. If you’re successful, you’ll probably find that you end up working longer hours than you did previously. You may not be able to ‘switch off’ from the business which can have a detrimental effect on family life. You may miss the workplace banter too. These are just some of the many issues you must consider before venturing into starting a home based business.
What Kind of Work Then?You’ve reassured yourself that working at home really is for you. What next?
Information technology and the communications revolution have probably had the biggest impact upon the ability for people to work from home and there are many jobs you can now do from home (and some from anywhere else in the world you choose to be) thanks to the PC and to the advancement of telecommunications. However, there are many other home based businesses which don’t rely on a PC much, if at all.
Some of the more popular occupations include:
- Sales of cosmetics and/or health related products
- Direct sales/mail order sales – eBay has helped to make this sector flourish
- Administration – data entry, book keeping, virtual receptionist/answering service, word processing
- CV writing service
- Telemarketing/Telesales – a number of companies are often willing to outsource this type of work to home based workers
- Copywriting – providing copy for marketing and advertising purposes
- Graphic Design – website design, corporate identity design
- Interior Design
- Costume Design
- Child care
- Craft making
- Sewing, embroidery
- AutoCAD design
The above are just a few of the more popular businesses which operate from home or from some other remote location.
However, you may be able to think of many others which are, as yet, to be firmly established. If you have a passion for something, have a think and decide whether or not it’s viable to do that job or run that business by working at home.
It isn’t easy and it can often involve even longer hours, more dedication and commitment and even more sacrifices than you might have made by going out to work but the rewards, both financially and personally, have often meant that it was the best decision that many thousands of people have taken.
The most difficult part tends to be in truly determining whether or not it’s suitable for you and that’s the most important part. The good news, however, is that many traditional businesses are now looking at home based workers as a valuable resource and are more open to utilising their services as opposed to employing more staff themselves.