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Have you ever wanted to work from home? As a woman, the answer to that question is probably a resounding yes. Many of us struggle with balancing all it means to be a wife and mother with pursuing self-fulfillment through our careers. Running your own at-home business can help you do just that. Here’s what’s hot, how to get started, and resources for teaching yourself all there is to know about the pros and cons of remote work and entrepreneurship.
According to the Small Business Administration, there are 10 steps that new business owners have to take. These include doing your research, determining a business structure, and applying for licenses and permits, where applicable. Since you will be working from home, you also have to stage an area to conduct business. Ideally, this is a private home office, which can either be in a spare bedroom, garage, or quiet corner of your main living area.
What to Do
Your options for what to do as a work-from-home-entrepreneur are more or less unlimited. However, a few areas to consider include:
- Software development. Because it is technical in nature, software development, which might also be called computer programming, is a job you can do from virtually anywhere. Typically, you’ll be expected to have a bachelor's degree, but all fields need strong programmers as part of their support system.
- Writing. If you have a strong sense of grammar and the ability to convey a message, consider selling your wordsmithing skills as a freelance writer. You don’t have to limit yourself to one company, and you can do anything from penning website copy to writing articles for magazines and newspapers, all from the comfort of home.
- Affiliate marketing. Marketing influencer Neil Patel describes affiliate marketing as a passive income that relies on revenue sharing. Essentially, you build your own web presence and market someone else’s products or services. When one of your followers makes a purchase on your recommendation, you earn a commission.
- Insurance sales. Most insurance agents are not entrepreneurs, per se, but are independent contractors. You might be required to have a license and, after a brief training period, may be expected to generate your own leads. The biggest benefit here is that you potentially have an unlimited income and access to referrals once you are established.
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Online Job Training
Since you want to work from home, it only makes sense that you want to learn from home as well. If you’re looking to brush up on your skills, look no further than the internet—specifically, sites like Udemy and Lynda (now LinkedIn Learning). These and many other resources can help you gain a greater understanding of business, marketing, design, web development, and everything in between. If your budget is tight, you may also want to check out CareerOneStop, which is sponsored by the US Department of Labor.
Looking for Opportunities
As an entrepreneur, you’ll have to make your own opportunities. Fortunately, there are plenty of websites out there that can take some of the work out of your search. CareerBuilder, Glassdoor, and Indeed are all popular, but don’t count out lesser-known services such as UpWork and Fiverr, both of which are geared toward freelancers and allow you to pick and choose which projects you want to take and when. And if you haven’t already, make a point to connect with colleagues and other business contacts.
Working from home is an ideal situation for women. Not only does it cut down on your commute, it also allows you to be where you need to on your own terms. But it takes work. From figuring out what you want to do to jumping headfirst into the hustle and making your own opportunities, self-employment is a full-time job in itself. But you can do it, and the information above can get you started.