So many people want to start a home based business these days. One might think it is a brand-new trend. Wrong. Working from home used to be the normal occupation for the majority of people more than 100 years ago. Only when industrialization began people started to leave their homes and started to work in factories.
Later the trend shifted and today most people work in offices. Home based businesses did not start with the rise of the Internet. We only see a revival like anything that has been neglected for a while. Not so long ago it was normal for people to work from home on either their own farm, in their own store or their own garage. Chances are your grandma or at least your great-grandma knows more about home based businesses that you do. So what do our grandmas tell us when we ask them what really matters when working from home.
What can we learn from them? Grandma said she always separated money for the business and the money for the family. You should do no different today. She may have had different purses to store the money.
What you should do is having a separate bank account for your business and never use it for your private expenses. Grandma said she wrote down all the expenses and all the sales in a little book to always know how the business went. This is why it is called bookkeeping. You keep a book and record all your financial transaction in there.
Today you may have a spreadsheet on your computer but what it comes down to is that you still need to keep a record of all your financial activity when doing business. Grandma said she always chatted with customers. They would stay in her store for a long time and talk about the neighbours, the weather and their kids. Today this is called customer relationship management. You have to build a relationship with your customer. In today's times when selling over the Internet the customer is somebody you hardly know.
But you always have to build a relationship with him or her. Take your time to know your customers and speak to them - be it on the phone or by mail. Listen to their needs and respond to their questions. Grandma said she always had her kids around her and they were watching her work and learning what a business meant for the family.
I must say I had never considered that before, but it is true. Imagine in today's world when you work in an office your kids never see you working. They do not make that connection between you leaving home in the morning and their stereo or TV - items paid with the money you bring home. When you work at home your kids see you working and they will value your work much more because it is what pays the bills. Believe me.
Once you start thinking about it you realize there are many things that are not really that new at all and that we can learn from past generations. Working from home is not new. In fact it is the oldest and most natural form of occupation that exists and there is plenty knowledge out there to teach you how to succeed. Sometimes you just have to find it.
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