Are you ready to work full time from home?
Are you considering working full time from home on the internet? Make sure you've answered all of these questions before jumping into the deep end.
Itís now almost two years since I started dabbling on the internet, trying to make money online. At that time it was a bit of an experiment, kind of like a hobby - something that I did partly for the enjoyment and partly in the hope that I would make enough money to leave my day job.
Now, 20 months later my hobby has turned in to a business and it is generating enough income from for me to happily go part time at work.
Should I decide to do this Iíll be taking the huge step from working on my business in my spare time to earn some extra money, to working half the week for myself. I will then be depending on the money from my own business to pay my mortgage and bills.
If I manage to achieve the same success working from home during the day as I have over the last year working a few hours here and there in my spare time Iíll be well on my way to becoming a full time home business entrepreneur.
I know this sounds fantastic, but what if something goes wrong? If I eventually work full time for myself Iíll be giving up a regular full time salary, not to mention company pension, sick pay and bonuses. For this reason I decided to ask myself a few questions. Iíve put together a list of 5 questions that you need to ask yourself before you leave your day job
1. Do you have a financial cushion? Before you give up your full time or part time job, make sure you have some money in the bank in case something goes wrong. Preferably you should make sure that you have no credit card debts or loans and have at least 3 months salary in the bank just to allow you to get back on your feet if the worst happens.
2. Are you making enough money? Sounds obvious, but remember to add up your current outgoings to see if your online income will cover everything. Remember to take into account tax payments and allow for the fact that youíll no longer receive paid holidays, health insurance, sick pay and a company pension. If you have a big purchase coming up in the near future, such as a new house, you may want to postpone your full time online career until youíve secured your mortgage.
3. Are your income streams diverse enough? Are you making all your money from one source? If youíre currently making all your money selling similar items on Ebay or earning an income from a small number of affiliate programs or making money from a single program such as Google Adsense, you could be putting yourself at risk. What if the market for the products you are selling disappears? The affiliate programs you are promoting shuts down? You need to take a close look at the sources of your income. Ideally your income should be coming from numerous sources e.g. selling your own products, promoting different affiliate programs, using multiple websites in different niches.
4. Do you have a business plan? Since you are considering taking such a big step you need to have a business plan. This should include a description of your company and the products and services you provide, the analysis of your market, strategy and implementation along with a financial plan.
5. How will you cope with working alone? If you enjoy working with other people every day, itís likely that you may find the transition to working alone quite difficult. You should consider possible strategies to cope with this change. For example you may want to make sure that part of your business involves working with other people Ė perhaps providing a service locally or consulting. Perhaps you could fill the vacuum of not meeting people at work by joining a club or taking a part time training course. Making an effort to stay in touch and meet up with friends and former colleagues regularly will also help.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Suzanne Morrison is the webmaster of Internet Business Ideas.