Practical Tips for the Home Based Startup

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With the advent and evolution of the internet, many new businesses are home based startups. Nearly any new business can employ workers who telecommute as part of the basic operations but working from home isn’t for everybody. We asked a number of successful home based business owners for some advice to give to the aspiring home based startup. Here’s what we found:

Start with a Plan

Some traditional businesses start each day with a morning staff meeting to articulate the goals for the day. What MUST be accomplished today, what would we LIKE to complete today, and what can we do to better position ourselves for the workload tomorrow? You may not have a large conference table and a team of employees but you can still do this. Take 10 minutes in the morning to articulate your goals for the day.

In addition, plan some mini goals within the larger picture. “I will complete these tasks before lunch. I will complete these tasks before I step away from my computer to get a drink.” Be goal oriented throughout your entire day.

What are your Work Hours?

Your new home based startup may be new and because of that, you’re going to have to work every minute that you can but it’s important to define the “can.” You could work from the time you wake until the time you go back to sleep but if you have a family, they need your time as well. As your business grows, keep a notebook or your mobile device at the ready so you can write notes to yourself for the next day but keep family, friends, and other personal necessities in the proper balance for obvious reasons. It also helps battle burnout.

Dress for Success

How many times have you read an article where a home based entrepreneur says, “I work in my pajamas?” It may work for some but it’s probably a bad idea. When you worked outside of your home, did you ever notice that you had a change in mentality when you put your work clothes on? It signals that it’s time to tend to your career. Do the same with your home based startup. While you may not need a coat and tie, make yourself presentable each day. (Also, would you watch TV while working if you had a boss? Don’t do it at home either. Turn it on during your scheduled lunch time.)


How did today go? Did you meet the goals you set earlier in the morning? If so, be proud. If you didn’t, ask why and make changes for tomorrow. Always evolve and figure out how you can squeeze more productivity out of your work day.

Not everybody is cut out for a home based business. Ask these questions about yourself: Are you the type of person who likes to spend time alone? Would you consider yourself highly self-motivated? How will you separate your work life from your home life when you work and live in the same building? Before starting your home based startup, understand that it isn’t for everybody but with each new year, many are finding success working from home.