Oh so important! Most people think they have what it takes, only to sign up, order product, spend some time and money into advertising and creating business cards, only to realize they didn’t think it all through. Common mistake, so take a read through the readiness checklist.
Do you have the time to work from home? You may say “Yes, of course!” but let’s really look at it. Do you have kids at home and will you have enough un-interupted time to focus on your work. How much time do you have (3 hours a day, 1 hour a day, 3 hours a week etc.) Will you still be working out of home and if so, when will you find time to work at home? If you are a stay at home parent and kids have sports and appointments plus you are taking care of the house and meals etc (been there!) how much time can you set aside for your business?
Every business takes some money to start up. With the Watkins home business it’s pretty affordable, only $29.95 for the year and no need to buy anything else. However, if you are wanting to make business cards, or order some product to have on hand or to do trade shows, or have a tablecloth and signage made for a tradeshow, then you will need to have the available cash. Financial availability also means things like if you are cutting down or leaving your other job to focus on this – can you afford to do that? All businesses take a bit to start bringing in consistent income (though doing direct customer sales like at markets and trade shows are the quickest way to get profit fast!)
This can be touchy but if you have a partner, do they support you and this decision? There will be frustrating times ahead (as all business owners face) and you will need some dedicated time to work your business. Having a partner who supports your and will allow you the time to grow this business is important. Also, if you have kids or are planning to have kids, will you have the time to work at home? If you are caring for a relative or fostering a bunch of pets, will you have the time.
Motivation and Independance
BIGGEST POINT EVER! I can not stress enough how important it is you are motivated, can work independantly, are a problem-solver and can set goals! Lots of people have big dreams and start strong but then get a bit, shall we say….lazy! Maybe it’s a nice day (or week) outside and you decide to go to the park or rollerblade, or maybe take the kids to the splashpark. not really a problem, as long as you still fit your hours in for work. This is where making your own schedule is important. Maybe in the summer you only work 2 or 3 days, that is fine! Part of the perk with a home business is WORK LIFE BALANCE! Have time with the kids, or for you and still manage a business!
You must be able to remain motivated though, because no big boss is going to remind you to stay on track. Problems will arise and you need to be a problem-solver and find solutions, not just go all negative and give up. #1 reason for failure is saying “I will do that tommorow”. (Saying it one day and then doing it tommorow is fine…but if you say it every day….)
So let’s just put this out there right now – what are you expectations? Ok so you are working from home, have great work life balance. You spend time with family/friends when you want, set your own holidays, write off business expenses and home office expenses, get great job out of successes….but what are your expectations? How much money do you want to make monthly and in what time period? Is that feasible with the hours and investment you have to offer? If this a short job for now, or a long time plan? Is it a hobby for fun and a bit of income or perhaps something you are building for retirement so you can earn residual income instead of pulling RRSPs out? What do you hope to get out of this business and is it feasible with what you have to offer at the moment. Being realistic with your expectations is important so you don’t get discouraged and can reach your goals more easily.