Archive for the ‘Work From Home’ Category

Engage the Page

Engage the page. Whether you are writing an article, a web page or a love letter, be totally present and engaged. Your objective in writing the first sentence is to inspire your reader to at least read the second sentence.

You have less than 90 seconds to capture the attention of a reader to your web page. No, I’m not advocating flashing text, wild colors and provocative pictures. The mere thought of those will cause me to race to the back button. I would never even open the page. No need for the delete button; I would not even consider opening the site.

What would inspire you to click on the site? Yes, an ad which appeals to your interests would be one factor. If you are searching for a great home based business, you would type words into the search bar which indicated the type of business which matched your interests and talents. If you were interested in health, you might type the word “nutrition” or “eating healthy foods.” If you were seeking the perfect home based business, you might type “making money working from home” or “work from home business ideas.” If you were seeking financial freedom, you might type in the words “wealth accelerator” or “vertical research advisory” or even ”self made millionaire.”

When the ads appeared on your screen, you would see the top 10 choices matching those keywords on page one. You would pick an ad whose words resonated with you and click on that link. When the image on your screen shifted to the page in questions, you expect the message on the page to match the words in the ad. In the early days of the internet, that was not always the case. Thanks to the strict guidelines of Google, the ad message is much more likely to match the web page message now than it did five or six years ago.

Your colors, banner headline and opening sentences must be appealing and consistent with the ad or your viewer will be gone faster than you can say “internet scam.” Today’s internet surfers are very savvy. Since there is a plethora of information and sites available, they will not hesitate more than a millisecond at a bad site.

What makes a good site besides the page message matching the ad message? Learn which colors match your product and personality. Refer to the article “Psychology of Colors” for more in-depth color analysis. Your banner headline should be captivating but not so large as to take up too much space. The most valuable internet real estate is what appears on the screen when the page first opens. That area is termed “above the fold.” It is the information shown without requiring the viewer to scroll down on the page. Be certain it is appealing enough that the viewer desires to remain on the page. Adding a short video helps.

Darren LaCroix, 2001 Toastmasters World Champion Speaker, recommends less than 90 second videos. Most videos, including mine before I read this information, were closer to 4 minutes. Now I have work to do to re-record all of my web page videos.

Content is king; however, presentation is queen. Ask any man and you will probably hear, “If mama isn’t happy, no one is happy.” Make the presentation at least as important as the content. If the presentation is not attractive, they will never stay to read the content.

Hire Elaine Love to speak at you next conference. Hire Elaine Love as your personal coach and mentor. Join me at www.ElaineSpeaks.net or www.Elaine4Success.com.

Success Plan – why

New Years resolutions are looming just around the corner. The practice of making new years resolutions has become a common practice with so many Americans. We resolve to lose weight, exercise more, make more money, make better decisions with our money, spend more time with the family and eat more healthy foods. All of these sound like excellent ideas at the time. In most cases we actually intend to follow through. Most Americans make their resolutions and within 3 months, 3 days, or sometimes 3 hours they break those same resolutions.

Why oh why do they break them within such a short time period? Your “why” is your motivation for doing or not doing anything. The bottom line comes down to the reason or “why” we make those resolutions in the first place. If you make new years resolutions, why do you make them? How have those resolutions worked out for you so far?

The reason most people break those resolutions so quickly is that they do not have a workable success plan. For instance if you have a goal to lose weight, you may decide to go on one of those fad “fasting” diets. Many people refer to them as a cleansing. This may sound like a great idea on the morning of day 1 but by noon, you are really hungry.

Recently I needed to visit the Dracula center (blood lab) for some tests. As you probably know, it is advised that you fast (not eat or drink anything except water) for 12 hours prior to having your blood drawn. As I sat in the blood lab waiting for my turn, one of the other patients calmly remarked, “This paper is starting to look rather tasty, I am so hungry.” Obviously she was joking; however, if you are at home near the refrigerator or pantry, that temptation becomes real. With good intentions you may rationalize that orange juice is healthy or an apple is good for you. By evening you are looking wistfully at a sandwich. The next day you may even have an irresistible urge for a burger and French fries. The fasting or water only diet has a short duration of workability. In the case of the blood lab, you can fast for 12 hours because you know the time frame is short. In the case of a 3 to 5 day fasting diet, very few achieve success. It simply is not a realistic success plan for most folks.

The second reason why such a radical departure from your normal routine is unsuccessful is that you selected something you feel you should do rather than something you are strongly committed to achieving. If it is a matter of life or death that you follow a certain diet or lose x number of pounds, you have a stronger motivation to achieve the goal. Your success plan is firmly rooted in your very survival. Fighting for your life provides a powerful motivation – a powerful “why” to succeed.

Starting a new business follows the same principles as the diet. If you invest $50 and you are going to give the business a “try,” the success plan is about as likely to reach its goal as the 3 to 5 day fasting diet. Giving it a “try” is exactly the same as the unrealistic diet. You gave the diet a try and gave up within a few days or a few hours. By saying you are giving something a try means you are giving yourself permission to fail.

With a $50 investment you have very little money to lose and no “life threatening” motivation to succeed. Remember that the purpose of a business is to provide value and earn an income. You are not starting a business for the practice; you are starting a business to help people and make money. Look deep within yourself to the motivation for starting the business. Why are you starting the business? How strong is your motivation to succeed? Just like the diet, unless you have a powerful reason to achieve your goals, you have handicapped yourself. In order to realize your goals you must have a strong “why.” Your motivation to accomplish your success plan must be clear, concise and powerful.

Only with a strong “why” will you accomplish your goal.

For more tips and techniques for success, hire Elaine Love as the speaker for your next meeting and hire Elaine Love as you personal coach and mentor. Go to www.ElaineSpeaks.net to leave your request for Elaine’s services.

Distraction plaque most people

List 5 priority tasks for the day

3 top priority and 2 lesser priorities

Distractions plague most people, but especially the home based business entrepreneur.  In a busy office you have the conversations in the adjoining cubicle, co-workers stopping by on the way to and from the break room and maybe even customers stopping to see you.  Imagine that, customers at your office.  It may feel like minor details and each only seems to take a few minutes, but how much time do they really take?

A busy executive once purchased a stop watch to measure his productive time.  He clicked it on when he was actually concentrating on his work and being productive.  He clicked it off every time he did anything except being productive.  He was shocked to learn that he had less than 3 hours of productive time in his entire work day.  Ouch!

If you dare, use the stop watch method to determine your actual productive time.  Regardless of whether you work in a busy office with multiple co-workers or at home, there will be interruptions.

Surfing the web and answering personal emails can break the flow of work at the home office or away; however, it is probably more tempting for the home based business entrepreneur because no one is likely to be peering over your shoulder.  Your spouse, kids or even pets can frequently interrupt you in a home office.  Then there is always the laundry, that extra cup of coffee (the kitchen is only steps away), or even walking outside in the sunshine to retrieve the mail.  So many interruptions; they all take time away from your professional focus.  Also as a home based business entrepreneur, you are only accountable to yourself rather than to a boss.  Depending upon your mindset, you may be a more forgiving boss.

In a public office, you may be able to close your door, face your computer so that your back is to the door or even resort to hanging a “please do not disturb” sign on the door.  Potential solutions for the home based business entrepreneur are actually easier.  Use these work from home business ideas to increase your productivity.  Close your door.  Clear every distracting object off your desk; that includes any bills, bank statements to be reconciled and personal correspondence.  Make a firm commitment not to even open your email program other than in the specific email time block.  Consider turning off your cell phone and even the ringer on your desk phone for 2 or 3 hours. If you are entirely too tempted to answer the Blackberry or iphone when they ring, put them in the next room or sit on them.  Sitting on them should muffle the sound sufficiently.

Making money working from home is not only possible but highly probable IF you focus your time productively.

Why do 97% of all businesses fail?  Profitability requires productivity.  Before you go to bed at night or before you leave the office for the day, make a list of your top 3 priorities to be accomplished the next day.  Add on 2 secondary priorities.  Post the list in a prominent location.  Making the list the night before lets your subconscious mind work on the ideas all night.

What time of day are you most productive?  If you are a morning person, schedule 2 or 3 of those top priorities to be accomplished in the morning.  If you think it will take you an hour, give yourself 45 minutes.  Shortening the time frame may cause you to work faster.  Vow not to take a break or not to go home at the end of the day until at least the top 3 priorities are properly completed.

Personally, I select my top 5 projects for the month, top 5 for the week and top 5 for the day to move my business forward.  For this exercise I divided them into 3 major and 2 minor tasks.

In review, the high productivity suggestions for critical focus times are:

  1. close the door to your office
  2. turn off the phone or put it in another room
  3. close the email program
  4. shorten the time frame allotted to accomplish each task
  5. make the list of 5 priorities for the next day at the end of the current day
  6. vow not to close out your work day until those priority tasks are completed

For more specific personalized business coaching or for a professional speaker who delivers value, join me at www.ElaineSpeaks.com or www.Elaine4Success.com.

Home Based Business Entrepreneur

Entrepreneurial Traits

Entrepreneurial Thinking

Evaluating the perfect business for you encompasses many factors. If you missed the prior editions of the Millionaire Blueprint, go back and review the advantages and cost factors of a franchise, purchasing a pre-owned brick and mortar business, establishing a new brick and mortar business and becoming a home based business entrepreneur.

Critical factor – all have their value and their place; it is not a matter of one is right and one is wrong. The most important factor is selecting the one which is right for you. Some of you may actually prefer to be an employee rather than embrace entrepreneurial thinking. Being the quintessential entrepreneur, I am personally psychologically unemployable. Entrepreneurial thinking is part of my DNA; entrepreneurial traits circulate through my veins. Once again, everyone must select what is right for them as an individual. Yes, I am solidly in the corner of the entrepreneur and profess the benefits of entrepreneurial thinking.

That being said, the time has arrived to quantify the elements of selecting the perfect business for those of you who do possess entrepreneurial traits and desires.

1. What are your interests and talents? Unless you have an interest in the subject, you will rarely invest the time and effort to study and learn the nuances of the industry. Unless you already possess extensive knowledge of the industry, you will need to seek wisdom.

The acronym S-I-N comes to mind. Yes, you all know what SIN is. I encourage you to SIN. Seek wisdom, implement and innovate (yes I know I am using the phonetic spelling of innovate for the acronym.)

Even if you have extensive knowledge of the subject area, keep learning and expanding.

Talent also plays a part. Do you possess the talent and abilities or do you need to expand one or both? Interest and ability play a significant part in selecting the best industry and niche for you.

2. Market analysis also influences the decision. Is there a need in the marketplace for your specific business? When I started Mt. Castles Property Management in Steamboat everyone was managing condominiums. No one was specializing in single family homes. With more and more second home owners, there was a significant need for a property management company specializing in single family home management. Can you say market niche?

3. Income potential becomes another significant factor. Know the level of income you desire to earn and the potential for this industry to generate that income. This is especially significant in network marketing or MLM. Many MLM companies pay tiny commissions and emphasize the long range residual commission. Caution that the residual only occurs when and if you produce and your down line also produces. Also know the long range nature of that residual; if you require or desire significant short term income, this is not an ideal situation for you.

Keep in mind that it will take the same amount of time, effort and marketing dollar to earn a tiny commission as it will to earn a high dollar commission. It will take a tremendous number of 25 dollar commissions to add up to one 4,500 or 9,000 commission. Look very carefully at the return on your time and marketing dollar investment. Be certain that your selection of a company or market niche can generate the desired return on investment.

4. Review the complaints against the company from the attorney general; this is especially important in the case of MLM or network marketing companies. Significant complaints are a major red flag. These red flags are warnings not only about the integrity of the company but your potential future earnings.

5. What is the long range potential of the company or market niche? A hula hoop or pet rock phase came and went fairly quickly. Have you selected a company which is inflation proof and recession proof? In a tight economy, people will be less likely to purchase lotions, potions, pills and juices. These items will either not be purchased or purchased from the local Walgreens Drug store; perhaps not exactly the same qualities but close enough to pass in a tight economy. Select a company and market niche with long term potential.

Yes, I know I have given you many factors to consider; however, each and every one of these factors has validity for your present and future success. For personalized assistance and additional insight, join me at www.Elaine4Success.com.

Millionaire Blueprint (3)

Making Money Working from Home

Home Based Business Entrepreneur

First and foremost, we have established that owning your own business provides more security. You can’t be fired or have your job outsourced to overseas when you own your own business. There are no outside forces placing a cap on your income when you own the business. You are your own boss; the way the boss treats you is totally in your control. Your duties are also in your control as well as your work schedule or time off. Of course, the responsibility for the success of the business is also yours.

As a brief review, we have explored the positives and negatives of purchasing a franchise, purchasing a pre-owned brick and mortar business or starting a new brick and mortar business.
1. Franchise fee to purchase the company name recognition and established customer base. Possibly a percentage of the gross revenue will be due back to the franchise parent office. You will also have to rent, lease or purchase the physical location for the franchise. Equipment will need to be purchased to operate the business. Office supplies and equipment will also need to be purchased. Inventory will be required to operate the business. Employees and their related costs will also be incurred. Overhead such as utilities will be incurred. Marketing could possibly be tied in with the franchise as well as individual local marketing costs. Finally, you will expect to spend long hours 5, 6 or possibly 7 days a week away from home operating the business.

2. Purchasing a brick and mortar business will incur all of the above with the exception of the franchise fee, percentage to the parent franchise company and the co-op advertising with the franchise. However you will have the purchase price from the current owner to compensate them for the customer base and reputation they have established. All of the other costs remain the same as purchasing a franchise.

3. Starting a new brick and mortar business will eliminate the purchase price since there will not be a prior owner; however, there will not be any pre-existing customer base or name recognition. Your marketing costs may be higher or your income progress may be slower since you are starting a totally new entity. All other costs remain the same as a franchise or purchasing a pre-owned brick and mortar business.

4. Option 4 is becoming a home based business entrepreneur.

The advantages are numerous for a home based business entrepreneur. First, you are paying a much lower fee to establish the business than you would to purchase a franchise or a pre-owned business. Second, you will not be paying additional rent, lease or purchase for the physical business location; you are in your home. Third, you will probably not have employees, additional overhead or extensive equipment purchase expenses. Your office equipment will be a computer, telephone, printer and telephone headset; you probably already own all of these with the possible exception of the headset. Establishing a great home based business is far less expensive. The perfect home based business can be started on a limited budget especially in comparison to the franchise or brick and mortar business.

A fourth advantage is the flexibility of hours. You can work around your family schedule and not leave the house to start making money working from home.

Working from home is both an advantage and a disadvantage because you will be exposed to more potential interruptions working from home. It is easier to be distracted by family, laundry, or the proximity of the kitchen.

Work from home business ideas are numerous. Select the best option for you.

In the next article, we will discuss the various factors to examine in order to select the best business type for you. Since there is a plethora of work from home business ideas, it is best to examine all of the factors to select the perfect one for you.

For personalized assistance in determining the best business for you, join me at www.Elaine4Success.com.

Steps to Start a Small Business

Job laid you off?  Can’t find another job?  Tired of looking for a job?  Maybe starting your own business is the answer.

79 million people will start a home business in the next three years according to this recent report in Forbes magazine.  American forefathers left England and came to America to build their businesses.  The entrepreneur has always been the backbone of America.  Edison, Jefferson, Washington, Franklin, Ford, Carnegie, Rockefeller, Gates and so many others were all entrepreneurs.  Every one of them started and developed their own business.  Why not you?

Why start your own business?  You control your income potential; you do not have a boss setting a salary or bonus cap on your earnings.  You set your own hours; no one tells you what time to arrive, take your break, take your lunch or what time to leave at night.  You no longer have to ask permission for a day off or a vacation.  Your duties are also your decision.  Sound good?

Even the beautiful petals of a rose and the heady perfume of its soft fragrance have a down side.   A rose bush has thorns.  Owning and operating your own business requires work.  Yes, I know.  Bummer.  The price you pay for all of those wonderful benefits is the responsibility of accomplishing all of the tasks necessary to make a business successful.

Decision one requires that you do something you know.  Either you already possess the necessary knowledge to be successful or you start learning.  Unless you already know exactly what you want to do, it is time to start assessing factors.

Before I started Mountain Castles Property Management, I asked questions and listened until I discovered a niche which needed to be filled.  Steamboat needed a property management company specializing in single family homes.  They wanted to rent homes on a yearly basis, a vacation basis or an executive basis.  An executive home does not rent; however, it must be cared for during the owner’s absence.  In some cases, the home needed attention even during the owner’s stay.

My knowledge was grossly insufficient in property management.  Reading books, attending classes and working for another property management company provided the training.

Decision two requires writing a detailed business plan.  What equipment, facilities, and supplies will be required?  How much will it cost?  What is the income projection?  What advertising will be used to achieve that income?  What about office staff?  The list goes on and on.  Prior planning avoids being blindsided by expenses.

Be optimistic but add a dash of realism.  You will not start out earning 20,000 income per month.  You will have unexpected expenses.  One of the jokes in building a new home is that it will take twice as long as expected and cost twice as much.  If you do not plan carefully, starting a new business can follow that same scenario.

Accurate record keeping is essential.  If you have a question about keeping a receipt or not, write every detail on it and file it where you can find it.  The IRS loves paper.  The steps to start a small business are quite simple and direct; however skipping any of them is not an option.

  1. Find a niche doing something you enjoy
  2. Either already posses the knowledge or acquire it
  3. Write a detailed business plan which includes every potential cost or situation
  4. Implement the plan.  Knowledge without action has far less value.
  5. Keep a very positive mental attitude and keep moving forward
  6. Celebrate every little success on the way to the big successes

The steps to start a small business are not difficult.  In a tough economy, starting small business may be easier than finding that magic job.

For specific, individual help, join me at www.Elaine4Success.com.

Work From Home Business Ideas

Over 79 million people will start a home based business this year according to Forbes magazine.  Yesterday I wrote an article on Steps to Start a Small Business.

Starting a small business from home has positives and negatives.

Positives:

  1. You do not have any additional rent for your business location.
  2. You do not have any additional utility expense for your business.
  3. You do not require any travel time or expense.  A 30 second walk from your bedroom to your office does not count as travel time.

4.  In the initial stages you will probably not have any employee expense

Negatives:

  1. You work from home.  You have all of the distractions of home life which makes it more challenging to focus and concentrate on business tasks.
  2. You have to do all of the tasks.  You place the ads, you call the people, you do the  training, you do the record keeping, you do the short and long range planning and you do your own research to learn more about your new business
  3. Wow.  After all of that you are probably thinking about a nap.  No can do.  Until you start making money in your new small business, you are probably still working your day job.  Plan at least 20 hours a week for you new business.

Being health conscious and an exercise-a-holic, I am not telling you to give up your sleep, give up healthy eating, or give up exercise.  It will be more challenging for awhile to accomplish everything.

Oh, your sanity is in the mix somewhere as well.  I am not telling you to give up your spouse, your kids or even your tennis racquet.  You WILL have to focus your time and energy carefully.  No more wasted time.  Carefully examine your schedule and make every minute count.

Weigh the time freedom, lower start up cost, convenience, and unlimited income potential against the discipline, time, initial investment and learning curve required for entrepreneurial thinking.  Do you have what it takes to be successful?

You may be thinking, “What if I fail?”  The best way to overcome your fear of failure is to make your desire for success more powerful than you fear.  What is your “why?”  What is your powerful reason to push through any obstacle until you reach success?

Every business requires a powerful “why,” but a home based business seems to require an even stronger why than a brick and mortar business.  Maybe it is because there is a lower investment or because it is easier to quit.  You do not have a lease to break or contracts to renegotiate or transfer.  Work from home business ideas sound great and they are great.  The catch is the follow through.

If you have the discipline, determination and “why,” your odds of success just skyrocketed.

If you would like individual coaching or more personalized guidance on your steps to start a small business, contact me at www.Elaine4Success.com.

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”Elaine spoke to our top leaders from 8 states, she gave us new and positive ways to connect with people
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