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        a home based business onlinehome business ideas




        One Foot In Each Camp

        © Elena Fawkner

        You have a full-time job but secretly you yearn to break
        free of the corporate shackles and strike out on your own.
        You have a great idea for a business but you need the income
        from your job to pay your mortgage and to feed yourself
        while you get it underway.  Sound familiar?  This article
        considers this dilemma and suggests how you might make the
        break from paid workforce to your own full-time home business
        when financial necessity dictates a regular and
        uninterrupted monthly income.

        This may be obvious but it bears restating: if you need a
        regular paycheck to survive, DON'T give up your day job
        until you have another regular, consistent income stream to
        take its place.  This applies even if you are absolutely
        convinced that your business idea is a surefire formula for
        financial success.  It may be, but even the most successful
        businesses take time to get of the ground and most have a few
        false starts before they finally take off.

        If you can't afford to give up your paid income while you
        build your business, then you have no choice but to start
        your home business as a side project and run it alongside
        your job.  To make any sort of progress in your home
        business, plan to devote two to three hours a day at an
        absolute minimum to your business.

        Because your time is extremely limited, you need to be
        ruthlessly efficient with what you do with it.  For example,
        can you find spare pockets of time during your workday?  If
        you are running an internet-based business and use a
        computer as part of your day job, this MAY be a possibility
        but be careful here.  Don't risk your job for your business
        if you can't afford to lose that income. I'm not suggesting
        here for a second that you conduct your business on company
        time, at least when you have work to do.  If you have some
        downtime during your day, though, then do look for ways to
        use that time productively.

        Other ways to squeeze time out of your day include foregoing
        TV in the evening and/or getting up an hour earlier.  In
        other words, get your priorities straight.

        If your home business is related to your paid job, be
        extremely careful not to create a conflict of interest for
        yourself.  In particular, do NOT deal with your employer's
        clients as part of your business.  Not only is it unethical
        but, when the time comes and you make the break from
        workforce to full-time home business, those clients may well
        follow you and your employer would have every right to take
        legal action against you for breach of your employment
        contract.

        Another difficulty you can get yourself into in this area is
        where to draw the line, if challenged, between what is
        confidential information and what is just general knowledge
        you carry around in your head.  You cannot use confidential
        information you obtained in the course of your job in your
        business.  Your general knowledge is not considered
        confidential information.  Examples of confidential
        information include customer lists, knowledge of the systems
        and procedures of your employer's business, trade secrets and
        the like.  For these sorts of reasons, it really is advisable
        not to choose for your home business what you do in your job.

        It is a good idea to be discreet in the workplace about your
        extracurricular activities.  Don't go out of your way to
        advertise the fact that you have started your own business.
        At best you will expose yourself to the increased scrutiny
        of your boss who may be concerned you will conduct your
        business on company time.  At worst, you may jeopardize your
        chances for advancement if your outside activities convey
        the message that you are only a temporary fixture who will
        leave as soon as your business starts generating enough
        income for you.  Although you may not be particularly
        concerned about career advancement because you plan to leave
        to run your own business, at least consider your position if
        your home business dreams don't pan out the way you hope.
        It is very difficult to resurrect an ambitious image once
        you've let it slide.

        Finally, and especially during this 'double duty' period be
        sure to allow sufficient time each week for relaxation and
        taking care of yourself.  This means paying attention to
        your nutrition, exercise routine and getting adequate sleep
        and well as allowing for pure downtime.  The demands on your
        body during the double duty period can be pretty intense.
        You don't want to be taking on this challenge if you're
        rundown, unfit and aren't getting enough sleep.  All areas of
        your life will only suffer if you're in this state.  So, stay
        ahead of the game by eating right, exercising and getting
        plenty of sleep and relaxation.

        After some time, your business will begin to generate income
        for you.  As you start generating more income, you will
        begin to turn your mind to deciding at what point it becomes
        uneconomic to continue your day job.  This is because, at a
        certain point, your business will reach 'critical mass', the
        level at which it becomes uneconomic to continue your day
        job because the return you get for your time and effort is
        greater from your home business.  This is because your
        salary doesn't vary according to effort and results (at
        least not directly), but your home business income does.

        As a general rule, you will need to wait until your business
        is consistently generating the same level of income on a
        proportionate basis to the time you spend on it before you
        start seriously considering quitting your day job.  Once you
        get to that point, test the elasticity of your income.  If
        you double the number of hours a week you spend on your
        business does your income increase commensurately?  If so,
        your income is elastic.  If you double your time input but
        your income only increases by half, then your income is
        somewhat inelastic.  You need to calculate how much time and
        effort you need to expend to generate in the form of
        business income what you are currently generating from your
        paid job.  If this is 'reasonable' by your standards then you
        can begin to seriously consider quitting your day job.  If
        not, you need to find ways to leverage your business so you
        can generate more income from a more acceptable commitment of
        time and effort.

        Only when you have satisfied yourself that you can generate
        from your business sufficient income on a CONTINUOUS and
        REGULAR basis, should you consider quitting your day job.
        That's only the threshhold question, though.  Behind it are
        a whole host of other issues to think about before making
        the break.  For example, how will you fund time off?  As a
        self-employed person you can forget about paid vacations.
        Even if this doesn't concern you financially, consider what
        will happen to your business if you're not around for two
        weeks.  Also, as a corporate employee, you probably enjoyed
        comprehensive medical benefits at your employer's expense.
        Again, these are gone.  Be sure you take out your own
        insurance and think about income protection insurance as
        well.  If you contract an illness that puts you out of action
        for a month, again, what happens to your business?  You will
        need to take out normal business insurances as well such as
        public risk.  Consider here whether clients will be visiting
        you at home.  If so, ensure your insurances cover injuries to
        business clients.  This is something that probably won't be
        covered under your general homeowner's policy.

        Build up a network of contacts before you quit your day job.
        Not only will they be an important asset to your business in
        the longer term, they can also help alleviate the feelings
        of isolation that you can expect to experience early in your
        home-based career.  Something else to do before you quit
        your day job is to prepare yourself mentally for the
        realities of working from home such as the need for self-
        discipline, feelings of isolation, your tendency to
        procrastinate to name a few.  Educate yourself by reading
        about what running a home business is REALLY like to
        minimize the culture shock when it happens to you.

        Prepare your family too for the changes that they can
        expect.  They need to understand that although you are at
        home, you are still working and they need to respect your
        limits during worktime.  Of course, set up your home office
        as if it were a corporate office.  Make sure you have two
        telephone lines and dedicate one to your business telephone
        and the other to your fax/internet connection.

        And one final piece of advice, when you first start working
        from home, establish a "going to work" routine, at least to
        start.  This will get you into the routine of working even
        though you are not leaving the house and you won't develop
        bad habits (such as procrastination or lack of direction)
        that will be difficult to break later on.

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        Elena Fawkner is the author of AHBBO Home-Based Business Online Magazine. Proud to offer information and articles to help people start and manage a successful home based business.

        Copyright 1998-2017, AHBBO.com. All rights are reserved. Monday, 25-Jan-2021 21:22:44 CST

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