Guest Blog 1: 5 Great Work-At-Home Opportunities Everyone Can Try
Two of the biggest entrepreneurial success stories of all time—Jeff Bezos with Amazon and Bill Gates with Microsoft—started in a garage. Jeff Bezos had a core team of five employees who worked out of Bezos' garage around the time of Amazon's founding in 1995.
Bill Gates similarly started out from modest beginnings as he and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen burned the midnight oil in Gates' garage twenty years earlier in 1975. Today, Bill Gates has a net worth of over $85 billion and Jeff Bezos isn't far behind at just over $73 billion.
While Gates' and Bezos' accomplishments are the stuff of legend, their stories go to show that as long as you have a good idea, you can work from just about anywhere.
5 Great At-home Business Opportunities to Consider
One of the really interesting findings in this U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report is that by 2020 a full 40% of the workforce, or around 60 million people, will be contingent workers like freelancers and entrepreneurs.
Contingent workers are sometimes, but not always, freelancers. Occasionally contingent workers are non-permanent workers who get paid huge commissions, referral fees, or operate on a per-project basis.
More than 80% of large companies are interested in hiring more flexible "free agent" workforces. With things like cloud computing, always-connected internet access, and vastly improved small business logistics, now's the time to start working from home. Interested? Consider these options:
- Virtual Assistant
The nice thing about becoming a virtual assistant is that it gives you incredible flexibility over the kinds of fields you choose to work within as well as the kinds of clients you decide to work with.
In the most general terms, a virtual assistant provides administrative or technical assistance to other professionals or small business owners.
If you're organized, bring a smile to work every day, and really know how to multitask without breaking a sweat, then this could definitely be the ideal work-from-home job for you to consider.
It's very common for a small business owner to hire a virtual assistant since they might be unsure about their company's fledgling viability or reluctant to take on too many permanent employees too soon.
You often hear that translators form a large chunk of freelancers working from home. While that's true, not everyone speaks two languages or feels comfortable consulting a dual-language dictionary or trying to bridge cultural divides in that way.
A better option would be becoming a teacher who works from home. Online teaching, tutoring, or even standardized test prep assistance can all be conducted from home thanks to communication tools like Skype and collaborative multimedia teaching tools.
- Franchise Consultant
Honest, organized, strong analytical skills? As long as that sounds like you, you might want to consider becoming a franchise consultant. Franchise consultants acts like a guidance counselor for franchisees (a.k.a., franchise investors) by linking them up with great franchise opportunities.
As a franchise consultant, you can work completely from home and also enjoy multiple revenue streams. You might, for instance, also work with small business owners to help them realize their dreams of becoming a franchise.
This might entail drafting a franchise agreement and creating an operations manual. As you can probably tell, a franchise consultant who works predominately with franchisees would draw on more sales-oriented skills whereas franchise consultants who work primarily with franchisors have to be extremely comfortable with nuts-and-bolts details like FDDs and franchise agreements.
- Web Developer
If you're tech savvy and interested in getting more professional independence, then you might want to check out web developer or web designer at-home work opportunities.
Let's say that you're more artistically talented and you want to work more in the graphic design department; if that's the case, you might look into using Adobe Photoshop and InDesign and becoming a freelance web developer.
If, on the other hand, you're more interested in coding than graphic design per se, then you might look into becoming a web designer. Web design focuses more on building the backbone of a website and, therefore, uses tools like HTML coding and CSS over things like Photoshop, which is more of a web development tool.
A transcriptionist is an excellent option for millions of people who want to be more independent because it requires virtually no prior experience. You essentially listen to audio files and transcribe what you hear into words by typing it all out. Sites like TranscribeMe! link up companies or universities with work-at-home transcriptionists all the time!