So You Want To Work At Home: I didn’t know THAT was going to happen!

Posted 05-11-2010 at 09:50 AM by Harmony96

Working at home is a great way for many people to earn a little extra side money, supplement the family budget, or replace a full-time income. And how great is it to be able to keep your same job even if you move out of state? But before trading in your 20-mile commute for a 20-foot commute, it’s best to have realistic expectations about what working at home really means.

Businesswoman image from freedigitalphotos.net1. Not everyone can do it. Working at home doesn’t fit with certain skill sets or certain family dynamics. Many computer-based jobs and nearly all crafting jobs can be done at home, but if all you know how to do is operate heavy machinery, then you might want to keep doing the heavy lifting at the office rather than turn your backyard into an industrial area. Family dynamics, especially when children are involved, can also affect how easily one can produce an income from home.

2. It takes time to get started. A lot of time and thought are needed before you can make your first dollar. What do you want to do? How long will it take to set that up versus a different career choice? Do you need to invest time into any additional training? If you’re crafting, do you need to test your product before going live?

3. It takes time day to day. You don’t have a Human Resources person to handle your taxes or a Marketing Director to let people know you exist. Everything has to be done yourself. This is time that needs to be factored in on top of the time you expect to actually be working.

4. It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme. If you want to work at home and think that in a month or two you’ll be making the big bucks, then think again. It usually takes a good six months to a year or longer before your name and reputation are known to people. During the wait, it’s possible that more time and money will go into your business than will come out.

I plan on having a whole series of articles on working at home, so please check back for more over the next weeks. This thread has more great info about working at home as well.


Filed Under: General


6 Responses to “So You Want To Work At Home: I didn’t know THAT was going to happen!”

  1. whitneywalters on May 11th, 2010 5:27 pm

    I am working on getting my hyena cart open and you are right, it takes a lot of work!

  2. poppys_mommy on May 11th, 2010 8:13 pm

    Be sure to include what others will expect. I work from home with my 16 month old (climbing up my legs at this very moment) and many others think I have tons of time at home so I can take on other responsibilities.
    “Since you don’t work, can you take me to the airport tomorrow?”
    “Did you get the laundry done today? How come we don’t have any milk?”
    “Thanks for having us over for dinner. We’ll have you over some time too. Of course, it’s easier for you since you’re home all day.”

    I’d love an article on how to gently correct people. I DO have a job plus I’m a full-time mom. I know they just don’t get it but I want to let others know this might be the reality of working from home too.

  3. 2boymommy on May 12th, 2010 12:10 am

    I left my job about 2 years ago and decided I would work from home. Well I did a Medical Transcription course and was all excited when I graduated only to find out that most companies only hire people with 2+ years of clinical, hospital, or office experience. So I kept trying to get a job, I got offered a job about 6 months after I graduated but couldnt take it because the training period overlapped with my Due date for my DS.. So I recently decided to take antother course with an internship program. Hoping this will help with finding a job. Over the las couple years we have put alot of money into schooling and hopefully I get a response out of it soon. It is hard work to work from home and to get started. Plus get all the motherly duties done.

  4. sway on May 12th, 2010 12:32 am

    this is a great article, thank you!

  5. aiyana4969 on May 12th, 2010 1:04 am

    poppys_mommy is right. You also have children that need trips to the docs, trips to the ER, family to feed and take care of, then in your “spare” time work on your buis. which is def. easier said than done! With real small chilren even after they are in bed it can be a task to get anything done, the house is a wreck, one or more will eventually wake up screaming with night terrors, colds, or feedings. Also the second you turn your back they are going to be doing something. While I write, and nurse my baby, my 2 YO found her older sister’s pencil and I am hearing the scritch scratching of beautiful little spiders being etcehed into my kitchen floor, earlier today it was the 6 YO thinking the dog was cold and a nice layer of dirt would make her warmer, while I did the dishes. I then had to take 20 min’s to wash the dog.

    Also if you think, hey while DH is home I can sew, lucky you if you can. Personally my DH has other things to do on his day off than babysit, he has a roof to fix among a million other things, and when he’s done with that he wants to watch a movie with me or play cards, not listen to the sewing machine hammar away. If I ask he’ll do it, but he feels very left out of the “mommy love circle”

    Being a WHAM is not easy and can take the fun out of a hobby you once loved.

    Oh and Don’t forget, while some customers understand you have a family, there is a limit to that patience, and some don’t have it at all, you have a buisness, they paid you for something and they want it.

    I give Kudo’s to all WHAM’s I know it’s not easy! After making my first diaper to sell, I told DH, I will NEVER compain about the price of diapers again!

  6. Weezy6703 on May 12th, 2010 3:49 pm

    In terms of family dynamics and type of job you are shooting for, really be sure you will be able to work it well with your children. If you get a job that has to be done during the day that is soley computer/data entry/IT support/etc, and you are required to be on the phone so many hours a day for conference calls, it may not be the best fit for your children. Those types of environments aren’t always hospitable for little ones running around needing mommy. Sure, if it’s something you can do after they are in bed, it may be helpful…just make sure it works for *everyone*.

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