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Running Your Own Home Business

Apr 1, 2008
One of the toughest challenges of operating a home business is interruptions to your workday by friends and relatives. Too many of them think that because you work at home and have a flexible schedule it can be adjusted whenever they have something more important to say or do. Especially when you first begin to work at home, the temptation may be there to help people out or take an unscheduled break when someone stops by, but it will not take long for these interruptions to become more frequent.

While it may sound crass and insensitive, you may find yourself ask them what part of no do they not understand. While family members may say they understand that you are busy and need to work, they are also the ones who interrupt the most. Unless it is made clear from day one, your days can become long as you work late to make up for the time you lost during the day running errands or doing household chores that should have waited until you got off work.

When asked if you can do something around the house, usually preceded by the phrase, if you have time, when you say you will try, they usually take it as a yes. The diplomatic response will be along the line of you will try, but if you run late getting done with whatever it is you are working on, you will make sure it gets done that evening. Of course, when you get done working that day you are going to have to fulfill your promise.

The first few months of running your own home business will be busy and the hours will be long. Even you have expressed that reality from the beginning, later on you will not be able to do anything like you told them it was going to take time to grow the business. Most family members will interpret this as you care more about working than you do about being with the family. Somewhere along the line you have turned into a workaholic and even if you are making decent money, it is not an acceptable answer.

Even with full cooperation, you may have to sometimes say no and then stick to it. No matter how much a spouse or child complains, you are going to have to stick to the reality that if you do not get the work done on time, there may be no more work and you will be back at a job outside the home. In some cases, this may be the best solution. If family and friends refuse to acknowledge the fact that what you do is just as important as holding down a real job, it is going to be tougher to maintain your productivity.

Communication is going to be the key to make running a home business work. Establish a working schedule and stick to it. When the day is done you can go back to being a member of the family, much the way it would be if you worked outside the house.
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Obinna Heche. Los Angeles - California

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