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Tough times for mining companies ahead

As Dickens may have said, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” and the current economic climate provides nothing short of a thrill a minute. Many businesses are trying to adapt their strategy to the current times, and new solutions like serviced office locations, available via http://www.regus.com.au/products/offices/serviced-offices.aspx/, are emerging throughout the country. Aside from location, the expenses/venue balance is coming to the forefront increasingly of late. At the same time one of the world’s biggest mining corporations announced the need to cut back and reduce its expenditure, other companies have been able to ride the wave of uncertainty and flourish under, what are largely considered to be, very trying financial circumstances. The business two cities we’re going to be looking at here are Sydney and Brisbane.

Anglo-Australian mining kingpin Rio Tinto PLC has announced its plans to close the Sydney office, in order to cut operational costs as the price of iron ore, a key commodity, plummets. The Sydney office employs 30 people and Rio Tinto has announced that it will continue its operations from serviced offices whenever business brings it back to Sydney.

The news was announced just two weeks after the company communicated that jobs would be lost in Queensland, at its Clermont coal mine. The cut backs were motivated by a decrease in demand for thermal coal which dropped to its lowest rate in two years. Thermal coal is used predominantly to fuel power stations.

Shares in the mining giant are currently trading dangerously close to their lowest in the last three years, as an increase in mining costs and a drop in commodity prices take over. This activity stands in stark contrast to the profits that were generated last year, as the demand from China and Asia as a whole boosted business and productivity. No announcements have made pertaining to the company’s administrative center in Melbourne or any of the regional centres that operate the logistics of the company’s mines that produce diamonds, iron ore, uranium and coal.

While the door shuts for one company, it opens for another and, while some companies are more concerned with cutting back and economising, others are still doing business in premier environments. The Executive Center has opened a new, fully serviced business center in Brisbane, offering only the most exclusive and upmarket services to a discerning clientele.

The Executive Centre operates 47 business centres in 18 cities and is well known for its cutting edge infrastructure and high quality fit outs. The company has entrenched itself firmly in the Australian market over the last decade, and operate four centres in Sydney alone, which cater to the likes of Morgan Stanley, Microsoft, AIG and Cisco.

The new business centre is expected to cater to the whims of multinational and local companies and has identified Brisbane as a mature city with a rapidly growing business scene. Brisbane is the headquarters for a number of multinational enterprises and expanding businesses with an acquired business taste and The Executive Centre has the services and facilities to boot.

The expansion of the company into Brisbane is an integral part of its US$18-million expansion project planned for the Asia-Pacific region. The Executive Centre has enjoyed a 261 per cent growth over the course of the last seven years and its opening of premier business facilities have taken place in cities like Chengdu, Mumbai, Singapore and Shenzhen.

The new centre is located in Brisbane’s Golden Triangle district at One One One Eagle Street, a prime location that is close to leisure activities, lifestyle essentials and an impressive transportation network. It will take pride of place among a number of prestigious businesses occupying the high rise building. The facilities include state of the art technology, Herman Miller modular furniture and a full communications system, complete with video conferencing facilities with a sharp focus on quality and attention to discerning detail. The company has also announced further plans to expand in Sydney and Perth.

Five tips on business mistakes to avoid

By Jania Bailey

It’s proven statistically and backed up by plain common sense — business owners who operate under a known brand and with an established business model have a big advantage over owners who have to start from scratch and figure out by themselves operations, marketing and point of sale systems.

Still, you shouldn’t assume franchises are fail-safe. They’re a wonderful way for professionals to build thriving small businesses, but there are some icebergs out there potential franchise owners need to avoid. Here are five:

Failure to absorb the FDD

It’s baffling to think that a franchisee would invest thousands of dollars in a business venture without knowing what he or she was getting into — especially when the law requires franchisors to disclose detailed information about operations, costs, earning potential and legal requirements.

But it happens. All the time. People get so excited about their business venture that they don’t read the Franchise Disclosure Document, or just read the Item 7 expenditures and Item 19 earnings information and skip over the rest. Then they’re caught by surprise later when it’s too late.

If you’re thinking about buying a franchise, you should review the FDD thoroughly and carefully, preferably with a good franchise attorney who can help you pinpoint problem areas or language that needs clarifying.

Underestimating what you need

It’s an easy trap to fall into — underestimating how much working capital you’ll need to make the business work. Small business loans are hard to come by these days. Unless you’re fully capitalized already, you’ll be cobbling the financing together from assorted sources, and it’s tempting to think you can scrape by on a minimum investment.

It’s a very risky way to go. If you hit a rough patch, you’ll need cash reserves to tide you over until you recover, and if the business account is empty, you run the risk of going under. You can of course consider getting cash loans online to help you tide over any short term cash crisis.

Failing to do due diligence

Before you even sign the franchise agreement, you need to go through the validation process, talking to franchise owners about the ground-level benefits and challenges of running the business.

Do it. Thoroughly. Do not assume talking to three top-performing franchisees is enough. You have to talk to the average franchisees, longtime franchisees, new franchisees, those doing well, those doing not so well. You should find out specifically why former franchisees left the system, whether it was a systematic problem or a matter of the kinds of errors detailed here.

Under budgeting your time

Franchise ownership is not a hobby. It takes commitment, especially in that critical first year. After years of success, many franchise owners can afford to work the business part-time and hire managers to take care of the day-to-day duties.

But it usually takes several years of success to get to that point, and until then, you simply have to put in the hours to get your franchise up and moving — and too many people go into franchising thinking they can get by on 6-hour days at first. It just doesn’t work that way.

Going your own way

There’s a paradox at the heart of franchising. The industry tends to attract aggressive, smart self-starters, take-charge types who never saw a business proposition they couldn’t improve.

These people can make horrible franchisees.

When you buy a franchise, you’re not buying a job, and you’re not bringing something to life from nothing. You buy an established name and system in a business you own, and the price for the advantage is the investment, franchise fee and royalties. That’s the deal. (Put another way: You didn’t build that. Not alone, anyway.)

But time after time, we see some franchise owners’ go-it-alone instincts get the better of them. Three or six or 12 months in, they get restless. This marketing plan is stupid. I can do it better. This sign doesn’t work in my market. My customers want a different message and more menu choices. The franchising graveyard is filled with businesses that failed because the franchise owner didn’t follow the system, presumably the reason why he approached the franchisor in the first place. The system’s there for a reason. Use it.

About the Author: Jania Bailey is President and COO of FranNet (www.frannet.com) and author of “Thriving – The Journey to Success in the Business World.”  FranNet is North America’s most respected leader in matching individuals with franchise opportunities. Based in Louisville, Ky., FranNet has more than 80 consultants across North America who use a proprietary profiling and consultative process to determine a business model unique to each client’s goals, skill sets and interests, and have matched thousands of entrepreneurs to rewarding small business opportunities.  Recognized by INC magazine as one of the top 500 fastest growing private companies in America in 2011 and 2010, this year marks the 25th anniversary for FranNet.

Related post:

How to start a business at 60
How to start a side business while working

 

Shhhhh! Keep your current job, start a business!

Let’s be honest.  Walking away from a job with benefits and regular pay doesn’t seem like the greatest idea right now with the economy the way it is.  But think about this ideal situation: you keep your current job while you start a business on the side.  This is commonly called “absentee” or “semi-absentee” business. Many people look for this scenario, but don’t realize what this actually entails until they start looking for this type of business. Before you get started, here are four upfront lessons you’ll quickly learn as you search for that perfect absentee opportunity:

 

  1. IN EMPLOYEES I TRUST: You will have to learn how to really “let go” and trust others.  Absentee businesses require employees. While you’re working at your regular job, you’ll need someone who can run the shop. There has to be at least a few trusted workers on site to operate the business, and it can be a challenge to find them. As a new business owner, you’ll learn quickly the importance of acquiring the face of your business – your employees.
  2. LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION: Learn it, love it, live by it.  It will become your mantra.  In general, you can’t run an absentee business from your home office. You need to have a place where customers and clients go so they can purchase your product or service. As an absentee business owner, finding the right location to do business will be one of the most important aspects of your business.
  3. AN OCTOPUS OWNER: It may only feel like you need eight arms to run things, but you’ll quickly understand the true meaning of multi-tasking. The term “absentee business owner” sounds like you’d never have to be there, right? Well, maybe not after the business is up and running. But at first, it may feel like you’re working two jobs for a little while. It may feel like a lot to bite off at first, but the plan is to get through that phase as soon as you can so that you can transition to a smoothly operating business that doesn’t require as much time and attention.
  4. LET THE FUND BEGIN:  Funding is always a concern when starting any business. By nature, absentee businesses cost more to set up and run as employees and location contribute to higher overhead. However, in the case of absentee owner businesses, a working owner has a better opportunity to get funding when they need it than someone who isn’t working. A lender has more confidence in awarding funds when you are cash flowing on your personal side, even if your new business isn’t cash flowing yet. You’ll learn that a good relationship with a good lender can really help when you’re building your business, and is one of the most important relationships to nurture and maintain during your time as a business owner.

 Every opportunity is different for each person.  But before you quickly can the idea of becoming a business owner due to your current job, perhaps investigate opportunities in absentee or semi-absentee ownership may offer you.

By Jania Bailey, President/COO, FranNet

About the Author: Jania Bailey is President and COO of FranNet (www.frannet.com) and author of “Thriving – The Journey to Success in the Business World.”  FranNet is North America’s most respected leader in matching individuals with franchise opportunities. Based in Louisville, Ky., FranNet has more than 80 consultants across North America who use a proprietary profiling and consultative process to determine a business model unique to each client’s goals, skill sets and interests, and have matched thousands of entrepreneurs to rewarding small business opportunities.  Recognized by INC magazine as one of the top 500 fastest growing private companies in America in 2011 and 2010, this year marks the 25th anniversary for FranNet.

What are the best American cities to start a business?

 According to a recent report by the financial business publication Kiplinger, it’s a diverse group of urban areas that have fared relatively well in the recent recession by building their business infrastructure and taking steps to attract scalable, high-paying jobs.

Here’s the list and the reasons why each is a great city to start a business — and it just so happens that FranNet has consultants in all of them. (Kiplinger didn’t rank the cities.)

  • Houston: “Entrepreneurs benefit from low living costs, no state personal income tax and a franchise tax capped at 0.575% for businesses with less than $10 million in annual revenue.”  The report further cited “high-powered incubators such as the Houston Tech Center, the Rice Alliance and Capital Factory funnel money and mentorship to promising start-ups.”
  • Indianapolis: “Cheap housing and office space, a low cost of living, and an excess of young talent from half a dozen universities feed the city’s start-up community.” The report further cited “nearly a dozen start-up incubators and a laundry list of venture capitalists, including big-time angel investors like Gravity Ventures and Halo Capital.”
  • Minneapolis: “More than 70 companies launch in Minneapolis every week — a result, perhaps, of the city’s low business taxes, multiple incentive and mentorship programs, and highly educated workforce.” The report further notes the city “saw its first coworking space open in July, and a year-old tech accelerator called Project Skyway has already funded more than a dozen startups in the region.”
  • Oklahoma City: “Oklahoma City entrepreneurs have two big advantages over business owners elsewhere: Midwestern startup costs are low, and government support for business is strong.” The report further says, “Oklahoma City has also partnered with i2E, an incubation nonprofit, to launch an entrepreneurial development center; investors contributed some $35 million to i2E companies in 2011.”
  • Raleigh, N.C.: “Raleigh recently announced a city-sponsored summit for entrepreneurs, as well as an ‘innovation and entrepreneurial center’ for use by start-ups.” The report further cited Raleigh’s “four incubators and one of the Southeast’s largest venture-capital firms.”
  • St. Louis: “St. Louis is a small pond compared with other places on our list, but the city gives local start-ups enough tax breaks and incentive programs to make it big,” the report says. “Government agencies such as the St. Louis Development Corporation supply low-interest loans to small businesses and subsidize co-working spaces.”
  • San Francisco: “San Francisco attracts entrepreneurs for two reasons: unrivaled access to venture capital and a legion of creative, like-minded people.” The report further cites San Francisco’s “dozens of start-up incubators, which provide office space, mentoring and seed capital to everyone from Internet tycoons to fashion designers to aspiring food-truck owners.”
  • Seattle: “Seattle is better known for major tech operations than for scrappy, small-time start-ups. But the city’s tech monoliths provide big opportunities for entrepreneurs.” The report further cites Seattle’s “own branch of TechStars, the nationally prominent and highly moneyed accelerator, as well as eight coworking spaces and near-daily networking events.”
  • Tampa: “Tampa promises more than nice beaches and a low cost of living. The Gulf Coast hot spot is also home to a nascent start-up scene. Local government is particularly business-friendly, promising tax credits to businesses that locate in certain areas or work in one of a number of high-demand industries.” The report further cited Tampa as “a key player in the Startup America Partnership, a national initiative that has funneled more than $730 million to new businesses in Florida and six other states.”
  • Washington, D.C.: “Job seekers often associate the District with government work, but the capital’s educated workforce and deep-pocketed investors make it an attractive option for entrepreneurs as well.” The report further cited “a $450 million fund to support new D.C.-based businesses” by AOL founders in late 2011.

 

If you’re in one of these cities and think you want to join the thousands who have used us with great success to find professional fulfillment through franchise ownership, find your local FranNet consultant at www.frannet.com/directory!

 

About the Author: Jania Bailey is President and COO of FranNet (www.frannet.com) and author of “Thriving – The Journey to Success in the Business World.”  FranNet is North America’s most respected leader in matching individuals with franchise opportunities. Based in Louisville, Ky., FranNet has more than 80 consultants across North America who use a proprietary profiling and consultative process to determine a business model unique to each client’s goals, skill sets and interests, and have matched thousands of entrepreneurs to rewarding small business opportunities.  Recognized by INC magazine as one of the top 500 fastest growing private companies in America in 2011 and 2010, this year marks the 25th anniversary for FranNet.

 

 

Anatomy of a career switch at age 60

Like millions of Americans, Richard Kerr suffered an economic blow in 2008. The commercial real estate pro had 30 years invested in a career he believed would be his last. Then the California real estate industry tanked. He had to take action — sooner rather than later.

“It was tough, especially in the beginning,” Kerr says. “I was forced to leave a career that was my passion. At one point I lost over $1 million in accounts in one month.”

Kerr did something he never would have imagined – he considered franchising as a career.  Working with Cari Vinci, president of FranNet West, Kerr launched the process of choosing a franchise. He describes it as life-changing, invigorating and revealing.

“I went through a period of soul searching, prayer and circulating around through networking,” Kerr says. “This is where Cari comes in. She hit a chord with me from the very fist meeting. When it comes down to it, I decided that there are still things I want to do. At 60, I just didn’t think I was done yet, so I began looking for another industry, a new career.”

Kerr responded well to the FranNet coaching process because it gave him time to discover new things about himself – preferences, skills and risk tolerance among them. The personal assessment and evaluation phases were eye-openers.

“We took the time to really nail my skills down,” Kerr continues. “In commercial real estate, I had to embrace and understand long-range planning. I learned how to network extensively with people who don’t share my vision. I often had to navigate complicated land, use regulations and deal with re-zoning. The process can take a long time – years. I also learned how to interface with bureaucrats, push through setbacks and assess a complicated situation for risks and opportunities.”

Like many Baby Boomers and career switchers that seek help from FranNet, Kerr possessed a powerful arsenal of transferable skills. Identifying them and applying them was a challenge, but ultimately “very interesting – and very gratifying,” Kerr says.

During the FranNet coaching process Kerr identified a key – and somewhat unusual – aspect of his personality. He thrives best in an environment with complex challenges. He actually wanted a franchise with high barriers to entry. After several months of coaching and planning, he purchased an urgent care franchise.

“It’s a challenging sector with a lot of regulations, but I believe it can really make a big impact and help a lot of people,” Kerr says. “I now have the ability to employ and mentor a lot of young people right out of school, as well as the ability to impact my local community – not just consumers but employers. If the patients at my urgent care franchises thrive and recover quickly, then it’s going to help everyone. I believe the urgent care model can, in many cases, perform better than traditional models of health care.”

Millions of Americans still find themselves in circumstances similar to Kerr’s. According to a recent article in Smart Money magazine, franchising is seeing a steady spike among people 51 and older. For example, a recent West Coast Franchise Expo saw a six percent increase in attendance from Baby Boomers.  “And they are not just browsing,” the article says. “A sample of Great Clips hair salons showed that its franchise owners over 50 had increased more than 15 percent in the last year.”

Mid-career and late-career professionals over 50 are loaded to the hilt with skills and talents. They need or want a new arena for them. Sound familiar?

About the Author: Jania Bailey is President and COO of FranNet (www.frannet.com) and author of “Thriving – The Journey to Success in the Business World.”  FranNet is North America’s most respected leader in matching individuals with franchise opportunities. Based in Louisville, Ky., FranNet has more than 80 consultants across North America who use a proprietary profiling and consultative process to determine a business model unique to each client’s goals, skill sets and interests, and have matched thousands of entrepreneurs to rewarding small business opportunities.  Recognized by INC magazine as one of the top 500 fastest growing private companies in America in 2011 and 2010, this year marks the 25th anniversary for FranNet.

Don’t Let Misconceptions Drive You Away

Jania Bailey shares insights on buying a franchise and how FranNet can help

BoomersNextSteps.com recently interviewed Jania Bailey, FranNet’s president and COO, about franchising opportunities for Baby Boomers and how FranNet can help future franchisees reach their business goals.

For 25 years, FranNet has helped people achieve their entrepreneurial dreams by matching them with the right franchise opportunities. The company offers an international network of franchise consultants, perfect for Baby Boomers not quite ready to retire.

This year is shaping up to be a banner year for FranNet, which just posted a record year in 2011. The company reported 33 percent more franchise placements in the first quarter of 2012 than in the same period in 2011. The International Franchise Association predicted at the end of 2011 that more than 14,000 new franchise locations would open in 2012 — and FranNet’s 2012 performance leads Bailey to suspect the IFA’s predictions were conservative.

Bailey said FranNet works to clear away misconceptions about franchise ownership and educates potential franchisees on the unique opportunities in business ownership. “When you say ‘franchising,’ most people think McDonald’s and a million dollars,” Bailey said, “but it’s a far more diverse field than it used to be.”

One key advantage in franchising is that all systems are already in place, taking away the overwhelming feeling of starting from scratch.

“There are so many opportunities,” Bailey said. “People have to take their blinders off and explore a little bit.” Bailey dispelled some common myths among franchise ownership.

Franchises Cost Too Much
As many Americans – including Boomers — have seen their savings and financial portfolio dwindle over the last 5 years, there’s a common concern that opening a franchise is too expensive. Bailey is quick to point out that more than 50 percent of the approximate 3,500 franchises cost less than $100,000 as a total investment, including among other things franchise fees, equipment and any product inventory necessary to operate the business. “

As a rule of thumb, we suggest our clients need about 25-30 percent of liquid capital available to them in order to buy into a particular franchise,” said Bailey. “So for a $100,000 franchise, you’d need about $25,000 – $30,000 in liquid capital to get going. When you include your 401K or other cash assets, business ownership becomes a lot more feasible when talking in those terms.”

This Economy is a Terrible Time to Start a Business
There’s no doubting that this economy has been tough on many businesses. But working through FranNet, Bailey says they can help potential business owners find businesses that are more “recession-resistant.”

“For instance, your hair doesn’t know that the economy is struggling – it’s going to keep growing,” jokes Bailey. “So hair care companies are still thriving because people are still getting their hair cut. But instead of the expensive salons, they’re downsizing their hair care to more affordable options,” Bailey said.

Another industry example Bailey pointed out is the automotive repair business.

“The average age of the car on the road today is 10 years old,” said Bailey. “People are not trading in their cars for the more expensive upgrade. Rather, they’re investing in the ongoing maintenance and repairs necessary to make their cars last longer.”

Bailey suggests those interested in business ownership contact their local FranNet consultant to address issues people may see as pitfalls.

As Bailey says, “We’ve seen it all. After being in business for 25 years, we’ve addressed about every concern there is and can typically find ways to make it work.” About the author: Jania Bailey is President and COO of FranNet www.frannet.com) and author of “Thriving – The Journey to Success in the Business World.”

Home Business – If You Can’t Find A Job, Create Your Own

With the economy the way it is today, its the perfect time for you to create your own job by setting up a home business. Few companies are hiring, but there are still ways to make money. Take advantage of the situation and work in the comfort of your own home. Use the information provided in this article to help you find a way to make an income. 

  • Find A Niche 

A niche is a defined portion of a market. It is a term more commonly used in relation to affiliate and internet marketing. For the purposes of this article, we are going to talk about a niche in general terms.When deciding what type of home business you want to start, you need to take inventory of your likes and dislikes. The reason behind this is, if you are going to embark on a home business, you have to know what you’re passionate about.Once you have decided on a niche, you need to work on cornering the specific portion of the market that interests you. 

  • Stick With What You Know Or Find Something New 

If you want to stick with your current career, start doing business from home. Provided of course, what you do for a living can be done from home. If you love what you do, your job is your niche.In 2008, the beginning of my working from home career, I started as a virtual legal assistant. For 12 years prior to that, I was a litigation legal assistant/paralegal. I started a job in a very laid back office where everyone worked pretty much remotely, with no set office hours. I eventually set up my computer system, so I could work practically full-time from home. 

  • Find Something New 

If it is not feasible to do what you do from home, find something that you can do. Think about your passions, talents and skills. Write them down and take some time to explore and research yourself. Once you have a grasp on your niche, research home business ideas. 

  • Write Up A Plan

 Research your niche and see what other home businesses are out there. Write out a detailed plan that includes all aspects of the start up tasks. Break down your plan into projects, then set goals to accomplish them. 

  • Dedicate The Necessary Time

 A business takes time. It doesn’t matter if it’s a brick and mortar business, or a home business. You will have to designate specific time slots to work on your business. You will have to work hard when you’re the boss. You can’t expect to be successful without a little elbow grease. 

  • Communicate With Potential Customers Or Clients 

Talk to your potential customers or clients. Find out what they need to make their lives easier. Then give them what they are looking for. You can do this in person, or on the internet. There are forums on almost every topic. Find out where your potential customers and clients hang out. Twitter and Facebook are other great resources. 

  • Keep Up With The Work

 Keep on top of your work load. Set short and long-term goals. Always keep in mind that even though you are the boss, the work still has to be done. 

  • Don’t Expect Large Profits Overnight

 Don’t expect that clients will be banging down your door, or you will make product or service sales overnight. It will take time for your home business to be known. You also have to consider trust issues. Before people do business with you, they have to trust you. 

  • Enjoy!

 Enjoy yourself! It may sound like running a home business is all work and no play but actually, this is not the case. Your own business gives you personal power and freedom, because you are in command of your destiny.You have to be dedicated to be successful. Once your home business is making you money, you will have the freedom to spend time with your family. You no longer have to miss important afternoon school plays. You can juggle your work around your life.Koralee Phillips-Er is a freelance writer and legal virtual assistant, who works out of her home. She maintains an informational website on everything you need to know about working from home writing and other home-based businesses.If you are looking for ways to make a living from the comfort of your own home please visit http://workfromhomewritinginfo.com

 

Work From Home Ideas

Virtual Assistant 

You could start a virtual assistant service using the camera on your computer to be a business professional’s personal planner and set appointments. Be someone’s personal secretary. If you have any particular skills or expertise in a certain area such as Human Recourses you could offer services on that level also. Begin by contacting previous employers, and past coworkers and tell them about your service. Post your ad in papers, Craigslist or job boards.

At Home Call Center

Many companies these days have all of their customer service and support calls routed overseas. A growing number of these companies are now hiring people to work from their homes responding to those calls. A lot of companies require you to have a college education, good problem solving skills and a quiet workspace. Usually you would take care of some sales, taking orders, and solving minor problems for people. This is a great work from home idea for the right person.

Online Auctions

Begin your own online store or personal auction using eBay tutorials to help you get up and running. You need an inexpensive digital camera to take photos of the items you want to sell and a clean, professional looking staging area with a backdrop that will enhance your product and make it easy to distinguish. There are many wholesale companies that you can purchase the latest trending merchandise from to sell on your auction. With a little experience many people enjoy a lucrative income from these types of work from home ideas.

Flea Markets

If you are one of those fortunate people who is artistically inclined and enjoy making craft items, pastry, candy or even cosmetic products you may want to get a table or booth at a craft fair or flea market. Try not to crowd your merchandise together. Merchandise your items by category and separation. It is easier for people to make a simple choice between two or three items than be overwhelmed by too many choices and not be able to decide at all.

Online Affiliate Programs

Out of the majority of work from home ideas, affiliate marketing should be at the top of the list. There are some decent companies out there offering a wide range of different programs, products and methods. Try to avoid the hype by researching the reviews of a specific company before you sign up or give them any money. Internet affiliate marketing can be very personally and financially rewarding. I recommend companies that have a proven track record, a turnkey operation that provides you with your own website with products or income streams ready to go. These kinds of programs do not require you to do any selling but only that you bring traffic to the site. They also should provide concise educational tutorials and mentorship to guide you step by step along the way.

Note: If you are looking for an honest, ethical, and legitimate opportunity to generate a full time income from home, click here.

For free training, free education, and a free income generating website, visit http://www.YourLifeOnCruiseControl.com today.

Considerations for Baby Boomers Starting a Home-Based Business

About ten thousand Baby Boomers are reaching retirement age every day in the United States. At least two-thirds of these Boomers must generate funds in order to financially survive. Many more simply wish to continue working, even if it is part-time. Many are planning to start a home-based business and are asking themselves, “What type of home-based business should I pursue?” An important aspect of this decision should be a feasible exit strategy that allows transition to full retirement at some point.

The obvious way to launch a home-based business is to leverage one’s work experience, contacts and expertise to create an enterprise that can be run from a home office. In most cases, this is the fastest path to success. If you enjoy what you did career-wise, this approach is an easy extension of your prior job. Planning ahead, one can even establish consulting contracts with an employer or his clients. The result can be a smooth transition with minimal cash flow impact.

Many Boomers, however, wish to launch a second career in a new arena, such as opening a bed and breakfast or becoming a teacher. This takes more investigation and planning, ideally accomplished well in advance of retirement. There are ample resources on the Internet (much of it free!) to assist with this process.

For older Boomers who have found themselves suddenly unemployed, time is usually of the essence. Typically, they are seeking a source of income with little start-up time. Unfortunately, finding another job is difficult for 50-plus Boomers.

Many laid-off Boomers compensate by putting up a quick website and trying to leverage their experience into a consultancy business, but soon realize that this road too has a start-up period while clients are procured. Others seek “instant businesses” in the form of established multi-level marketing operations or franchises, only to discover that these too are not “slam dunks.”

There is rarely an easy road to riches. Moreover, launching a home-based business is a process that is usually accompanied by anxiety and mounting credit card debt.

For those who make a successful transition to operating a home-based business, there is one more important consideration. At some point, they will want to really retire or at least cut back on their involvement in the business. Then, it would be nice to have something that provides ongoing residual or passive income. This goal should be part of the upfront planning in establishing a home-based business. Otherwise, it can be a costly and often devastating afterthought.

If a home-based business or franchise establishes a profitable, verifiable revenue stream from contented customers, it can usually be sold. The profits can then be invested for passive income during retirement. Again, the business plan must include this as an ultimate objective and be implemented accordingly. If the business does not generate satisfied return customers, its “good will” value is minimal and finding a buyer or achieving a good sales price will prove difficult.

There are other ways to generate passive income from home-based businesses. Membership and subscription-type businesses are good ongoing revenue generators. So are royalties from self-published eBooks. And carefully-screened MLM opportunities can yield continuing income streams as well. So achieving “retirement” may be as simple as transitioning the daily operation to a buyer or someone who is hired to manage it.

The lesson is clear. If you create or purchase a business, do so with the objective of creating intrinsic value that makes it possible to sell – or step back from – the operation at some point. An “exit strategy” is an important consideration for any home-based business, and older Baby Boomers should plan for this.

About the Author

Al Kernek is a Internet marketing consultant, an author and a Baby Boomer. Learn more about issues facing Baby Boomers seeking to retire on a fixed income at www.BabyBoomerLifeboat.com which is also an online portal to Websites containing valuable information and resources for Baby Boomers.

How to Be Successful As a Freelancer

Freelancing is the best job for many people who want to stay at home, out of the traffic and avoid the strict and stringent rules of the office. Instead of doing what others tell them, they can do their job according to their own rules and regulations. It is also the perfect job for moms who want to earn some extra cash without leaving their little ones.

There are many benefits of going freelance and working from home, which is the reason why there are so many freelancers around which makes it difficult to fight the competition. Many people start off their freelancing career but they find themselves in the middle of nowhere as they can’t make a place for themselves on a platform where there are many other freelancers around.

To get a freelancing job, you usually have to sign up on freelancing websites like Freelancer.com or oDesk.com. These websites are secure and most of the employers there are genuine who really pay you for your work. Also, these websites run on a system of reviews in which both the employer and the freelancer leaves feedback for each other, which is publicly visible. To know if an employer is genuine, you just have to look at his reviews. The same is for freelancers.

If you are a newbie, you will have no reviews for the employers to see whether you are reliable and provide good service or not. This is where you have to do some extra effort to make you stand differently from all the other freelancers out there.

Use the theory of cost leadership: to beat the competition and make the employers notice you, you should offer low rates for your work. Offer a bit lower than the usual standard rate, so the employer notices you.

Show your work and your credentials: send a sample of your work to the employer to show him your skills and your talent. Only your good work can help you make a place for yourself in the industry.

Accept any kind of work you get in the beginning: in the beginning, do any kind of work you get even if it is for very low rates. Consider it an investment of time for your freelancing business and do it to secure some good reviews from the employers. When you secure a place for yourself and people recognize you for your good work, then you can always select the work you want to do.

Be good and work well and hard: all the above tips are only useful when you are good and hardworking yourself, when you are ready to accept the work employers give you, make any amendments to your work if required, be communicative and always there to answer employer’s queries and update them on the status of work and deliver high quality work on time.

This will make you renowned for your good work and in a few months, you will not have to apply for jobs but employers will approach you yourself and will invite you to work on their projects.

Maria Ilyas is a freelance writer and writes high quality of articles. Writing is her career as well as passion.

Boomer Entrepreneurs: Do You Make These 3 Common Blunders in Your Home Business?

Weather you’re a novice or a veteran boomer entrepreneur, the chances are that you’ve made several blunders in your home-based business. Some more than others!

 

However much you try to err on the side of caution, it’s simply impossible to protect yourself from not to do something wrong at some time or other. The good thing about making mistakes is the opportunity to take note of what doesn’t work, and improve.

Thomas Edison worked on hundreds of experiments before he finally found the right formula for the light bulb. His approach was to look at each experiment as an opportunity to see what didn’t work, which took him one step closer to discovering what did work. I recently heard a saying that “a master has always faced disaster.”

How about you? What blunders have you made in your home business? Here are three common ones to be aware of, together with some tips to avoid, and or remedy the situation.

1. Expecting Unrealistic Results

Often when you get involved in a money-making business opportunity, such as an MLM (multi-level marketing), or internet marketing, you expect results to happen quicker than they do. Even though you know in your mind that this isn’t a “get rich quick” business, you have some deep-rooted hopes and dreams that profits will flow more rapidly.

Because we live in an instant gratification based society, patience is often a challenge. We want it and we want it now. However, in business, that isn’t a realistic approach. You need to build a strong, solid foundation first, and then plan an on-going marketing strategy to keep attracting new prospects.

2. Failing to Identify a Niche

The first question I ask my coaching clients is “who is your target market?” More often than not, they scoot around the subject, and give me general groups as their answer, such as entrepreneurs, small business owners, or healthcare professionals. Understand that each one of these is a huge group, and hard to penetrate because there is so much competition vying to reach that same audience.

Because most boomer entrepreneurs usually have a limited marketing budget, your chances of making any real impact gets harder. The solution is to define a niche market, a smaller group of people within your targeted group. For example, a niche within entrepreneurs could be, female Hispanic entrepreneurs 30-45 years old. It’s far easier to break into that smaller niche than ever it is to go after a universal group of entrepreneurs.

3. Giving Up Too Quickly

When business isn’t flowing in as rapidly as you’d like, there’s a strong temptation to give up whatever it is you’re doing. Perhaps you tried your hand at advertising on Facebook, or a website that attracts your target audience, and neither yield the kind of response you expected.

Chances are that you want to abandon that strategy for another that you heard was a better option. Yes, that may well be the case. However, before giving up on one approach in favor or another, really test to make sure that you’re making the right decision.

What if you were on the verge of a breakthrough, and missed the opportunity because you gave up too quickly. Keep that thought in your mind the next time you’re tempted to make a rash move to flee one coop in favor of another.

Chances are that if you’re an experienced boomer entrepreneur you’ve made at least one of these three common mistakes in your home-based business, and you’ve learned from it. If you’re a novice boomerpreneur, you’re ahead of the game because you’ve been warned, and have the opportunity to avoid making these universal blunders.

Here’s to your continued success to get rich in your niche.

 

Eager to start and master a successful home-based internet marketing business? Join Susan Friedmann, niche marketing expert, and her team of online marketing professionals who will teach you how to eliminate the learning curve to become a master online marketer. Visit http://JoinSusanToday.com and download a free copy “The Controversial Book That Stunned The Home Business Industry (Value $97)

Baby Boomers: Are You Prepared to Restructure Your Life?

Are you a baby boomer who’s ready to retire, and if so, are you ready for retirement? That’s the big question. If you are like me, a baby boomer in the latter stages getting near retirement age, do you have enough money or investments set aside to carry you through your retirement? Will you be able to continue your current standard of living (or better) based on the money you have saved?

Let’s take a minute to analyze this thinking. For example, let’s say you’re a 50 year old baby boomer earning $50K a year. For whatever reason, our culture has arbitrarily chosen the age of 65 as the ideal age to retire. Based on this, you have fifteen more years before the so called “golden handshake.”

Let’s also assume that you want to live at the same comfort level that you’re currently accustomed to, and you don’t have plans to switch to ramen noodles and prunes as your staple diet.

How long will you live? In today’s age of modern medicine, a healthy adult could definitely make it to ninety or even a hundred years old.

In terms of your retirement and savings, let’s also assume that your company executives pulled an Enron scam, and stole your entire pension fund. You can also assume (rightly so) that social security will be a thing of the past. That leaves 25 years of retirement supported solely by your savings and investments.

CNN has this nifty little retirement calculator that predicts that you will need $850,019 in the bank in order to just maintain your current standard of living. The question is, do you have that much?

Times are a ‘changing as the saying goes, and baby boomers, unfortunately, are bearing the worst of those changes as they approach retirement age. Many of us have worked our whole lives to scrimp and save thinking that there would pensions and social security to supplement our income during retirement. If you face the scary truth, and realize that these additions for retirees may soon be a thing of the past, where does that leave you? The reality is that it leaves us with a potential mess. However, it also leaves us with an opportunity.

No matter what, life is going to continue on no matter what you do. You will not be able to impact the inevitable demise of social security or the loss of your pensions and retirements. You can however, make a difference in your own life. It will all depend on how you respond to these changes, and the possibly tumultuous future.

Instead of sitting back and letting the world steam roll over you, you need to be willing to get up and do something about your future. Quit worrying about things you cannot change. Instead, start doing something about the things that you can control.

Retirement is a dirty word in my book. Old books, old cars and things that no longer work are retired. Are you so old that you can no longer work or be useful? I’m not! I’m still very active and useful.

So, what should you do? Where should you turn? You should start by reinventing yourself. Find something that you are passionate about, good at and that brings you joy and start doing it. The one requirement – make sure you get paid for it. Home-base business opportunities abound. They give you the freedom to do what you want, when you want. And, more importantly, they allow you to write your own paycheck. You just need to find one that is the right fit for you.

As you reach that certain age where others think you are no longer useful, don’t retire (at least don’t call it that). Instead, rejuvenate, reinvent, revitalize, and restructure your life. Take control of your life and do something that keeps you alive and earning. Remember, life goes on (sometimes like a freight train) but know and be secure in the thinking that you will be fine no matter what comes your way.

Don’t wait another minute, get started now!

Eager to start and master a successful home-based internet marketing business? Join Susan Friedmann, niche marketing expert, and her team of online marketing professionals who will teach you how to eliminate the learning curve to become a master online marketer. Visit http://JoinSusanToday.com and download a free copy “The Controversial Book That Stunned The Home Business Industry” (Value $97)