Starting Your Own Business

by Waller Jamison

Self employment is becoming increasingly popular. As more and more people become dissatisfied with their jobs, many are finding that running their own business is a better option.

The term self-employment covers a wide range of opportunities, from owning your own restaurant or shop to setting up an internet affiliate business - and everything in between! If you want to m a k e money online, you can sign up for our free audion course by clicking here.

So, if you are thinking of going it alone, how do you choose which business is right for you? You might like to start by considering your personal reasons for setting up a business.

Next let's have a look at some of the points you need to consider before deciding which business to start.

Money - the amount of cash you have to invest in your business will be a crucial factor. Some businesses can be set up with next to nothing - a computer, internet access, a few hundred dollars and a lot of hard work.

The average franchise fee, for example, is $25,000 and you'll need start up costs on top of that. Not to mention running costs such as rental, salaries and insurance.
Interests - whatever area you decide on, it's going to become a central focus in your life and so it's important to choose something you enjoy. One possibility is to freelance in an area of work you are doing at the moment or have done in the past.

Demand - and of course there has to be a demand for whatever you're selling. So no matter how passionate you are about a subject, if no-one else shares your enthusiasm, you'll have a hard time selling products and information relating to it.

To come up with some ideas, start by considering what you do already. Are there any skills which you use in your present job or in you home which might be profitable in a freelance capacity?

Some obvious examples are maintaining and repairing computers, doing bookkeeping or accounts, secretarial skills or cleaning, cooking for special diets or organising birthday parties for children or adults.

If one of your skills is in demand, could you teach it? Private tutoring, running workshops or teaching in adult education are potential avenues for this. If the skill is business related, such as using popular IT programs, a foreign language or time or stress management techniques, these can be offered to businesses as well as individuals.

You may feel that you want to do something completely different and are considering studying to gain a new skill. If you intend establishing a business in an area in which you have no experience, check the market first. If there is no demand, or the market is likely to be saturated before you qualify, you'll be back to square one.

An example where this could apply is in complementary medicine, which has become increasingly popular over the last 20 or 30 years, but whilst demand has grown, so has supply. This will vary a great deal from place to place.So be sure to do your research before investing time and money in training.

The internet has provided an opportunity for many people to become self-employed and the advantage here is that an online business is much less expensive than a bricks and mortar business, plus it can be set up from the comfort of your living room.

In fact, if you want to keep costs to a minimum, you can create a blog using a free blog service such as wordpress or blogger.

However, this doesn't mean that it is easy and you should beware of anyone who claims overnight riches. Do some research in how to set up an online business to decide if this is the right option for you.

Business Planning will give you some pointers to help you write your business plan. Your plan is an important part of your stat-up strategy and can help clarify your aims and the feasibility of your idea.

A business plan is not just a list of figures for the bank, but a valuable guide for you, as the business owner.

If you are looking for business ideas, a good starting point is to consider your existing skills and experience and how you might use them in a self-employed context.

A good example, if you have secretarial or administrative experience, would be to set up a secretarial business.

Think about what you do in your present job or what you've done in your previous jobs and see if anything would adapt to freelance work. Computer programming, accountancy, book-keeping and translation are all jobs which can be done on a contract basis.