The growing number of self-employed workers
Cash today is not easy to come by. Ask the millions of Americans who are currently unemployed due to cutbacks and layoffs. A growing number of them are turning to self-employment as a means of supporting themselves. Though this may seem like the best option, experts caution people to not move to working from their homes too quickly. There are some things to be aware of and weigh out prior to making the decision.
Working out of the house
Working out of the house can sound like a great idea. But in reality, it has to be done carefully and with a lot of forethought. Although it is the least expensive place to work, there can be considerable distractions. A dirty house, laundry, or the mall can all drag you away from the work at hand. Remember that if you are self-employed you have no one standing over you anymore to get work done. Now, productivity is totally in your hands and managing it well is integral to a successful entrepreneurial pursuit.
Another distraction that most self-employed Americans have to worry about is family and friends. It’s sometimes difficult to get loved-ones to understand that just because you are home, doesn’t mean you are available to socialize. Stopping them from visiting unexpectedly can be a difficult, but necessary, topic to address.
For those ready to be self-employed
If you are ready to work as a self-employed American, here are some tips to follow. First of all, get the right office set-up. You want a separate area of the house where business is conducted. Even if no clients are involved, you want a place where you are mentally prepared to work and be productive. Ideally, an extra bedroom, basement or attic can be used effectively as a home office. Martha Grable, small business coach, said, “Make sure your home office helps to get you into work-mode. Just like working in an office has a certain vibe, you want to recreate that in your workspace.”
When it comes to earning cash today, the self-employed need to remember to be organized. Grable stated, “Too many business owners make the mistake of piling invoices, receipts and bills up and never addressing them until the task is too big to handle.” The best thing to do to avoid disorganization is to schedule an hour at the end of a week, or two-week period, and organize all paperwork. It’s an integral part of a self-employed person’s routine and needs to be prioritized.
Another tip for successful self-employment is to set regular business hours. Though it’s tempting to start work at noon when you aren’t punching a time clock, remember that there is a reason most corporations start bright and early in the morning. Grable added, “Getting up early is another way to mentally prepare yourself for a workday…get your coffee, make your breakfast, but then get to work.”
Is self-employment right for you
Figuring out if self-employment is right for you can be done quickly. The bottom line for every business is cash-flow. If an entrepreneur is trying to gauge his or her success, looking at the amount of cash today is a good barometer. Grable said, “There is a learning curve with every business and having a good cash reserve is necessary at start-up…but once the business is up and running liquid assets are a key indicator of where the business is going and whether or not an owner is going to achieve their goals.”