Home-Based Business Success - Plan Ahead
Operating a successful home-based business can be challenging.† These tips will help you survive and thrive in your own business. Learn how to handle the many challenges that entrepreneurs face and effective ways to deal with them.
So whatís a successful entrepreneur to do?† I think one of the most important things to do is just realize, sometimes itís going to be hard.† And thatís okay.† Often I believe we feel that because we finally own our own business, and we work so hard for it, that we must be positive and happy ALL the time.†† We donít.† Hopefully the majority of the time you will be, however, when things come up, itís AOK to say, wow, this is tough and find support.† Have an online or offline buddy that you can go to and talk.† Someone who will say, hey itís going to be better; someone who knows you and knows just the right thing to say to make it better.
Itís also important to plan ahead.† No, you canít tell when the kids will get sick.† However, you can plan and have a back-up subcontractor so you can go straight to plan B.† The time to plan for this is before it happens, way before you need it.†
Here are a few tips I hope you find beneficial:
1)††† Find someone now who can help you with your business.† Send them work now so they become familiar with your needs.† Let them know that you will be using them on a sporadic basis.† Youíll probably find that once you see how much help they provide you use them a lot more than you thought, but at least you know you have the support you need.
2)††† Computers Ė Hands up Ė who backed up their system last week?† Ouch!!† Think about this, how would you feel if you went to turn on the computer and it was blank, dead, gone.† That can and will happen.† You need to back-up regularly and you need to check those back-ups.† One thing I recently discovered is I backed up regularly to another computer.† However, I didnít know how to retrieve the documents I backed up.†
3)††† Internet down Ė Do you have a friend in the neighborhood who also has a computer that you can use.† How about the local library.† Most of the time you can wait it out, however, for many of us if we do legal or medical transcription, itís crucial to be able to get it there.† I once had an attorney preparing for the trial of the century (at least he thought so).† The case rested on me (at least thatís what he told me), and right when it was time to send him all the pleadings, our phone went dead.† (For all of you wondering, we did pay the bill, it was a technical problem).† I immediately rushed over to my neighbors and was able to send the documents.† My client was none the wiser.†
4)††† Sick Kids - Ė MOMS, tell the truth, itís hard.† They are bored.† You are busy.† Here too you need to plan ahead.† Stock up on crafts at the Dollar Store.† Get Paint by Number Books and things that will take time, and be fun.† We have some fun ones at our site at www.virtualwordpublishing.com.† Also, allow your children to get creative.† Get 3 ring notebooks and allow them to write their own book adventures or design their own magazines.† Scissors, a few old magazines, paste and a little imagination will go a long ways.
5)††† In laws Ė Itís gonna happen.† If you want to get busy in your business, have company come in town.† Guaranteed, thatís the time that you will be your busiest.† Iíve been in business for 23 years now, and it seems that every time company comes into town, I get hit with a major rush.† And it doesnít get easier with the more years in business.† But one thing I do is plan ahead.† Because I live in Florida and get lots of company, I canít take time off every time.† However, what I can do is rotate and take time off with different clients.† That way Iím not working for all my clients during that time.† Also, if you donít have a separate office, do something, anything to get a computer in a room so you can close the doors and work.† When they see you there, to many it feels you are available.† When you work a 9-5, no one considers you home until 5:30.† However, when you happen to be in the same house, itís often easy for them to think you can socialize.†
These tips should help you survive and thrive in your business even when times are tough.†
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Diana Ennen and Kelly Poelker are the co-authors of numerous books including Virtual Assistant: the Series, Become a Highly Successful, Sought After VA and accompanying Virtual Assistant the Series Workbook, and Virtual Assistant - The Series: Working Virtually, A Guide to Working Remotely as an Employee.† For complete information on starting your own VA business, stop by† http://www.virtualwordpublishing.com.† Article is free to be reprinted as long as the authorís bio remains intact.