April - posted on 11/23/2010 ( 5 moms have responded )
Thank you for joining our community! This is a great resource for those looking to work from home. Hopefully the tips provided here will make your research easier and give you some direction.
Steps to start
First and foremost, you need to decide if you are looking for a “JOB” or a “BUSINESS”. A job is just that, a position where you are hired to work for someone else. You will be required to take on projects and complete them within a certain time frame. With a call center, they will tell you when you are required to work and be available to take phone calls. As with a traditional job, there is going to be limited flexibility depending on the types of work from jobs you find. There are a lot of online resources that have jobs posted that allow you to work from home, just be sure to do your research. If you find a website that you are not sure about or one that you are interested in, you can usually Google the name of the website that you found and then reviews or scam, for example “www.abccompany.com reviews” or “www.abccompany.com scam”. This will generally pull up blogs and review based websites where people talk about their experience. Some of these job websites will be free to register and some will require a paid membership to have access to the job postings. Again, do your homework. A job should NEVER require that you pay money to get started.
With any on-line job resource, never fall into a trap of having an employer ask you for samples of your work before they will hire you. They are wanting something for nothing and trying to obtain work for free. Also keep in mind that most of these jobs are very competitive. The pay will be very small starting out (don’t be surprised if you see some listed for $3-$4 an hour starting out) until you establish yourself with different clients and can take higher paying jobs. I have heard of sites like Hire My Mom and Odesk but have no personal experience with either one. I encourage you to do your homework.
Great Link for WAHM:
BEWARE - Some WAH jobs to AVOID!!:
1. Assembly Work at Home
2. Envelope Stuffing: Typical Ad Chain letter
3. Home Typist
4. Appointment setter
5. Lists of companies that hire home workers: Many people get scammed into buying lists that promise hundreds of “sure bet” companies that are just waiting to hire you to work from home. The simple reality is that these lists are often just compiled from the telephone book and many of the companies on them, if the companies exist at all, don't know they're on such a list. And, the real kicker: Most of these companies don't even hire home-based workers. There are legitimate lists online, but they are totally free for you to review.
6. Online Businesses
7. Processing Medical Insurance Claims
8. Urged to buy software programs and even computers at exorbitant prices; a program selling at a software store for $69 might cost you several thousands of dollars. Told that your work will be coordinated with insurance companies by a central computer. Required to pay for expensive training sessions available at a "current special rate" that will be higher in the future, and Pressured to make a decision immediately. Most likely, the expensive training sessions are superficial, and the market for your services is very small or nonexistent. The promoter may delay the processing of your job, citing a backlog or mistakes in your work. There may also be no central computer as advertised. You may be left with no way to deliver what you have promised to your clients or customers—if you found any—and with no way to earn any money on you own.
If you decide that you want to be more entrepreneurial and have more flexibility to “be your own boss”, then you can consider starting your own business. I see this statement all the time "I want to start a business from home but I don't want to pay start up costs". Any business opportunity is going to have some kind of start up cost/investment as it’s a business, not a job. If you wanted to open a new boutique, you would not be able to do that for free, correct? It would require you to invest some time and money to get your boutique business going. Its the same concept with starting a business from home. Starting your own business requires research and due diligence.
Make out a wish list of your “WANTS” and “DON’T WANTS” of a business. What would the perfect business look like to you? Some tips to help you with this:
1. PARTY PLAN? - Start by figuring out if you want to do parties or not. This will take a big chunk out of your research no matter which way you go. Talk to other people that are currently in a party plan. Ask them about their experience and what supplies they are required to pay for (catalogs, order forms, etc.) Do they experience a lot of change over with their inventory (are pieces retired often that would require you to buy more inventory on a regular basis?). If you find a company that you are really interested in, I would suggest finding a consultant in your area (you can usually find this on the company's website under "find a consultant near you") and see if you can tag along with her to a party so you can see first hand what you would be doing.
2. YOUR NICHE - After you decide if you want a party plan type business or not, you can look at ALL the party and non-party type companies and settle on a product or service that you can get passionate about. What are your interests? What is your niché? Then you'll want to select what field you want to be in like jewelry, cooking, health, wellness/vitamins etc.
3. RESEARCH - It’s important to take into consideration the industry and the demand for the product. You may LOVE the product but will others find the same value in it? Is it a consumable product that people need? Are the products expensive? How well do you feel you will be able to market the products? Once you've settled on an industry then research all the companies within that industry. Like with health and wellness, there is Melaleuca, Shaklee, VitaMark. Research includes comparisons of compensation plans mostly as one company might pay better than another (why work harder if with another company you'll be making more after the same amount of business being brought in by you?) Research about the company itself: what kind of record does it have with it's reps or it's products? How long has it been operational (the younger companies under 5 years have a higher risk of going out of business leaving you with a lot of hard work for nothing)? Don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions and expect factual answers with no hype.
4. SUPPORT TEAM - Once you've settled on a company then it's time to research about each team within the company. Some teams have better reputations in a company than others. With AmeriPlan® for example there are only about 9 or 10 teams. Most of the teams are old school meaning they have meetings and encourage you to talk to friends and family. But one particular team focuses more on online ways of working because they are mostly Moms with kiddos and have crazy schedules and since they want to be at home mostly they don't want to have to do meetings in a hotel or home. There are also teams where most moms may want to work a certain way...and after joining they may find out that the team they are on does not work the way they want to, and they might struggle to learn what works and what doesn't so you'll be mostly left to figure this on your own; whereas with a team who markets this way already knows what works and what doesn't so you just have to do what you are told so to speak and don't have to waste time trying to reinvent the wheel to get into profit mode.
You'll also want to ask what they do to help you grow as a leader. Do they have training in place to help you know what to do? What do they suggest about personal development? You'll also want to ask if you can listen to a few training calls or even more importantly get on their training email newsletter list. You'll be able to see exactly what kind of training you'll get plus whatever else they include in the emails like inspirational quotes, helpful articles etc.
Now with other companies like Melaleuca, there are many Mom teams that know how to work online so you can look to each team for different reasons (I don't know what they are so you'd have to ask them lol). But usually within each company each team has learned what their strengths and weaknesses are so a good prospective enroller will tell you this. Which brings me to the last point:
5. NARROWING IT DOWN - After settling on a team then you'll want to "interview" a few different enrollers. Ask them questions like what methods do they know well on how to advertise? Or in the areas they aren't as familiar with can team training help them? What is their typical schedule like (because if they only work at night and you only want to work in the day then you'll hardly be able to talk with them except via email. Sometimes you'll need to talk with your enroller over the phone because you might need to discuss something at length). You'll also be able to see what personality you'll click with. Just like at a job outside the home you'll get along with some people great and others not so much. So you'll want to enroll with someone you can see yourself becoming great friends with, someone that is going to be a good business partner. After all the purpose of starting a business is to go far with it which means being with the company for years.
I will provide a list of common work from home business opportunities, however, I do not endorse any of these companies, they are for reference only:
Tahitian Noni Juice
Ava Anderson Non-Toxic
I hope that you find this information helpful in your journey to find a work from home job or business and that our community and it’s members will be able to further assist you.
Best of luck!