As the economy continues to limp along, now more than ever, people are beginning to explore the idea of starting a home-based, low overhead business. There are a ton of ideas out there for starting home-based businesses. Most home-based businesses are started based upon a skill set that an individual already possesses, often times from skills acquired from years of on-the job experience in the business world. Still others are created out of passions or hobbies that people have that translate into business opportunities.
Home-based business marketing is a hotbed for scam artists and fraud though with charlatans and snake oil salesmen running amuck. Above all, you have to do your homework on any of the “opportunities” you should find (whether they’re home-based or not) and approach each of them with caution and a healthy dose of skepticism. Many of the worst home-based business scams appear on the surface to be legitimate, but end up charging expensive upfront fees for “access” to outdated directories and old lists of still other business opportunity scams, such as envelope stuffing, chain letters, craft assembly and countless other multi-level marketing schemes.
The good news is that there are thousands of legitimate home-based business opportunities that won’t require that you take a “class” or pay a subscription or a fee to get started with. Most of the best home-based businesses are not sexy, hip, slick and cool sounding, but simple, straight-forward and uncomplicated micro businesses that leverage the experience, skill sets and passions of people who are just looking to supplement their income on a part-time basis.
Here’s a list of 8 legitimate and popular home-based business ideas that can be setup quickly and inexpensively:
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Working in an office environment is an ideal place to get to know your team members and employees on a much more intimate level. Running an e-commerce business on the other hand will take your management skills to a new level. Many businesses that exist primarily on the internet will find that eventually help is needed. That help comes in the form of a virtual team that will communicate in mostly electronic and written form and work mainly out of their own homes. This virtual team management will require some new skills and leadership essentials that you, as the business owner, will need to adapt to in order to keep the business running smoothly when it is not totally under your own thumb. Virtual leadership requires a unique skill set, which is growing in demand. As businesses online grow, the need to quickly ramp up additional help can spring upon a growing business at any time.
For many people, the opportunity to work at home is highly appealing. There are few people who would decline working from their home office, or even their couch, on a full time basis but there are fewer people who can truly handle the conversion to virtual team member. As the leader of this virtual team, you need to be able to weed out the members who can do the job and do it well, with little to no supervision , and ultimately, focus on building your team around those than can produce solid results. Leaders and workers alike must conform to work practices yet remain flexible to keep the work “environment” productive and conducive to all members.
Learning how to lead a virtual team typically involves constant electronic communication via email and digital voice over-IP (VOIP). Other teams will require more extensive technology for communication, such as online meeting software and video conferencing. Telephone communication and conference calling may also be involved, depending on the nature of the business and the team members. Effective communication is essential to any business, but it’s one of the cornerstones of success for a business that uses a virtual office environment. Each party has to be able to communicate what they are doing to other team members in order for it to be a success. For teams that are built entirely virtual, there are some rules of the road that should be adhered to for all team members to help alleviate communication problems upfront:
Here is a list of proactive measures your virtual business should institute for all virtual team members:
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