Mindset, Learning, Collaboration

5 questions to ask yourself before you start a new home business

Many like the idea of working for themselves but it is for some it is not all it is cracked up to be. Its hard work for starters and often not as flexible as you think. However, if you plan right you can make it work for you. But this blog is not about how to run a successful business its about determining if you should start a home business.

There are great advantages of starting a home business like:

  • flexible work hours
  • work where you choose

You would think the list is longer but you cant really say work where you want, when you want, how you want and with who you want unless you are really lucky. If you want to be successful you will need to work when your clients need you and for as many hours as it takes. Sometimes you have to work with people clients you dont like because they pay you. Working where you want is not always possible either as most people think working from home is easy but it can be very distracting and renting a room outside the home can be expensive.

Here are 5 questions you should ask yourself before you start a home business:

  1. Do you have the right space to work in?For some this might even be working outside the home in the clients office, for others it will be at home or from their car. It is important to have a comfortable place to work and a secure place to store stock, files and tax documents. If you are going to work at home then make sure it is free from disctraction and ensure friends and family know your work hours are not socialising hours. Setting up a space to work is not cheap. Find out how much office furniture will cost so you have things like a suitable computer, software, printer, laminator, chair, shelving, filing cabinet, mobile phone…..yes there are lots of things you might need. If you cant work from home then find out how much it costs to rent some space locally.
  2. Are you best when you work with others or on your own?Chances are that you wont enjoy working for yourself if you like to work in a team. However if you have people you can get together with to bounce ideas off and get advice from you might be ok. You may want to consider having a business partner if you like working with others but like the idea of working for yourself. This comes with its own headaches though so its important to think this through.
  3. Do you have a head for all the aspects of running a business?Marketing and Sales (including social media), packaging and shipping, tax, invoicing and all that goes with managing cashflow, business planning, customer service (including complaints) and Website design. If you dont have all these skills maybe a business partner would, you could outsource it or learn to do it. If you have to learn to do it you need time and money. If you pay someone to do it then you will save time but it will cost you money.
  4. Do you know if there is a market for what you want to sell ?No point in you being the only one sold on your idea. This point is related to point 4. You will need to do some market research and get to know your market. Are you prepared to take the time to do this?
  5. Do you have back up money to ensure you can survive for 3-6 months?If workign for yourself involves you quitting your day job then you will need to cover all your regular bills for 3-6 months while you get started. If you dont have this then think about starting smaller. Make a plan to do some learning about things like social media marketing, web design, cash flow, developing a business plan, reduce your work hours and work part time while you build your business up.

If you have a passion for starting a business of your own it doesnt have to be instead of your day job. It could be as well as if you harness the power of social media and online marketing. My hope is that you ask yourself these questions to before you start a home business. Sit down now and make a list of what you need to do if you want to have your own business. I hope you have found these questions helpful.

Kerri Bainbridge

One half of the Anywhere Team NZ

www.anywherebusinessnetwork.co.nz

Busy Busy Busy

Busy Busy Busy

How many time have I told myself this in the past? I am too busy. Concentration levels are high the task that I am dealing with requires it. I drop that half-finished task and deal with crisis’s as they develop. The ambulance at the bottom of the cliff, the firefighter! Days turn into a week and weeks turn into months! Then all of a sudden I am sick. My body shuts me down for an enforced rest. I soldier on and the sickness gets worse!

Busy

Stop!

My mind body and soul are out of balance! My mind took over going on to autopilot. My nutrition suffered as the mind wanted caffeine, sugar and fast food for that instant hit! My mind was at a million miles an hour! The body responded by shutting down the mind with sickness! The soul looked on forlorn as mind and body were ignoring it!

The Fix

Meditation slowing down the mind, stopping that monkey mind on autopilot being in charge. Slowly breathing in breathing out letting go of what was past and letting thoughts that come into the mind wash away. Breath in breath out slowing that pace down. Reclaiming the power of my inner self.

Yoga slowly doing the asanas opening the energy points releasing the tensions. Following that vinyasa flow dealing with the issues as they come up.

 

Nutrition is required dealing with the deficiencies of my diet. More Vit C and D magnesium for the heart and B group vitamins for the mind. Less processed food green tea instead of caffeine. Cultivation of bliss!

The meditation cultivates feelings of well being the soul has joined the family with the mind and body, back in balance!

Calmness at work develops, no more firefights, just serenity!

 

Andrew

Half Anywhere Business Network

Care

Care

The Handshake or hug and the 21st Century

When I started in business I met with prospective and new clients got to know them and collectively we decided to collaborate with each other. This is a lot of trust in my core business which I pride with honesty. I shake the guy’s hand or hugged the lady and our collaboration was sealed. I knew their business and they knew mine. These days of the 21st century I am increasing not seeing the clients and have developed means of getting that handshake. I ask a lot more questions not because I am noisy but because I need to know my customer in the terms of legislation as well as peace of mind. I have secure portals for documents and records, electronic signatures, identity standards as well as 2-factor identification available. This creates problems initially for clients in two areas:

  • The cost… All of this costs they see me ramping up fees just to make more money this breeds contempt
  • Knowledge gaps The client has a mindset block to adopting these technologies and pushes back against change

The Cost

AS the transition to a hybrid cloud server business in conjunction with my collaboration with Microsoft, MYOB, and local IT at Work allows me offsite back up as well as up to date software for secure communication and storage. Multiple backups and redundancy allow me to offer the services of my competitors while still being in business. Without it the tech back office I would not be able to operate with the constant change. This comes at a cost. I have to let go of clients who do not see this as necessary as it is now the way to do business.

 

Knowledge Gaps

I am a patient guy who has coached thousands of people over the years. In 99.9% of the cases, there is a solution to there training. Initial blocks are related to their mindset. The clients I have found don’t like change.  Change management is slowly giving them the right information at the right time. I have to be aware that some do not take in lots of information  The client has a cycle of learning and it may take in a couple of years to get them there but eventually I do. I try and standardize the training however it is not unknown for me to bespoke solutions.

 

Above my screen in my office is a framed statement:

Just for Today, I will

Not Worry

Not be angry

Do my work honestly

Give thanks for my many blessings

Be kind to every living thing

 

When dealing with people I recognize them as people. While the hugs and handshakes sometimes aren’t there enough these days I still appreciate my clients exactly the same way there were when I first collaborated with them. That hasn’t changed only the delivery.

 

As I develop the business advisory services of Anywhere Business Network Ltd I am carrying thru the traditions of The Tax Man Limited. I truly believe that the digital skills that are on offer thru the collaborative partners that the new company has will make businesses shine in the 21st century.

 

Onward and upward!

 

Andrew

Half of the Anywhere Business Network

Yin and Yang

Insatiable Need For Yang

Yang

Controlling the yang and keeping it in check is important! Having balance in my daily life is a must.

I see many driven people come into my life they show aggressiveness in the pursuit of their goals. Their goal is their chief motivation however in that pursuit they manifest health and relationship issues. The goal blanks out each day as they move forward. When the goal has reached the feeling is a bit like an anti-climax.

Definition of yang

the masculine active principle in nature that in Chinese cosmology is exhibited in light, heat, or dryness and that combines with yin to produce all that comes to be

Yang

To take it further ego tends to drive Yang. It is something of the mind. When ego takes over the mind goes out of balance with the body and soul. Feelings and emotions are parked.

The body being full of energy is just as important as the mind. Yin while being in constant contact with the mind tends to manifest its self in feelings.

Definition of yin

The feminine passive principle in nature that in Chinese cosmology is exhibited in darkness, cold, or wetness and that combines with yang to produce all that comes to be

 

As you can see being driven my Yin could be described as being left in a cold wet mess!

The importance of what I am saying here is to remain in balance give equal balance to the mind and body. Allow joy and happiness to you in your day and the positive feelings of well being by exercise and good nutrition. Listen and act with relationships. Set time aside to appreciate your surroundings. Laugh smile and cry. By all means, pursue goals but enjoy the journey!

 

The cement of Yin and Yang is the soul. Being in touch with your inner being/ higher power is a good start to balance. It is all about mindset!

 

Andrew

Half of Anywhere Business Network

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Peace Now

Peace Now and the Spy that Came in from the Cold

Peace now and always is a better state of mind! Fear is a state of mind. Looking back the external stimuli dictated my reactions for what seemed an eternity.

Growing Up

As a child of the 60’s and 70’s at the forefront of my mind from the media was the cold war. The nightly images from Vietnam were chilling and perverse as anything on the internet today. The movies of the day carried thru these themes and as a child in Wellington, I would always go to the flicks on a Saturday afternoon matinee to see the latest blockbuster. The Spy thrillers with the suspense they carried always intrigued me! The images of the spy drop at Checkpoint Charlie with the slow walk, the nod of acknowledgment of spies, as they walked past each other made me sit on the edge of my seat.

Peace Now

The cold wall was still in still going when I joined the NZ Army in 1986. We learned of soviet doctrine the makeup of opposing sections, platoon’s, companies and battalions there weapons and tactics. Then one day it was over or so we all thought!

Work

While working at Inland Revenue I investigated people and learned to understand their makeup, what to expect, there habits and routines. All with the objective of ensuing they had returned the right amount of income.

When I went out on my own in 1997 I wanted to specialise in forensic accounting but alas it did not take me long to realise that the market that I had to project myself into was too small. Instead, I concentrated on small and microbusinesses. I also started to realise with the conversations I had with people how much the hated the Government and the way it operated in the tax field with its passive aggressive use of fear! I had to be very careful that as the messenger I was not tainted by this!

4 or 5 times a year I would have different people coming into my office with the same problem in that they had never furnished anything thing to Inland Revenue and wanted to put it right! Yup the spies were coming in from the cold. Huge amounts of work would be done, and the information passed via tax returns to Inland Revenue. I did a lot of reconstruction involved and developing systems was done to achieve the results. The client kept out of jail, I made some money and the revenues insatiable lust for money was satisfied.

The Mind

I soon found that something in my makeup always wanted that edge that next big moment of suspense. I had to start dealing with it as I knew that you can’t live on the edge. I started yoga and meditation as well as developing digital systems to assist me to produce financial statements quickly and efficiently as well as communicate with clients no matter where they were. I also took up Toastmasters to improve the quality of that communication. All of this was to reduce the risk of miscommunication as well as the stress of not getting it right.

Awareness

I started to see the person behind the client and be more self-aware, because of the changes I had made to myself. I saw their stress, a few suicides, a few busted marriages, the anguish, and sometimes relief as their fears were allayed. I do a lot of sign posting to assist people to get their options right. Fear can mean two things F@@k everything and Run or Face everything and rise. I try to coach people into rising always looking for the positive rather than the cynical darkness they see in the Government. I found that people coming to see me just wanted peace. I found it was a matter of there own perception in that peace begins with themselves and while possessions might have to be sold to pay to the government that in the end, if they have food warmth shelter and love they will have peace.

 

 

Andrew

Half of Anywhere Business Network

Laedership

Leadership

It’s not about me

Leadership is instilling the belief in someone that they can do it. It is not about taking control and dictating to people what they shouldn’t do. We are all big enough to make up our own minds, and a good leader is supportive of your needs and offers empathy, listening skills, and opinion when asked. A good leader encourages your self-confidence and goes thru your choices of action towards your journey. A good leader does not offer threats, intimidation or ridicule.  A good leader uses right speech to motivate and steer on your chosen path. Take yoga for example. A good leader will allow you to focus on what you want. There are no comparisons as it is just you and the yoga. The changes you make to your daily practice are based on your incremental improvement and the leader leads by example.

In the end, it boils down to being supportive, being trusted as well as being honest!

Leadership

It is the same in business. You seek mentors to support you. They don’t take over they over advise. The offer leadership and are supportive. They don’t ridicule but offer alternatives to your course of action. They add value to your decisions. That is why I have mentors and it is especially important to me as those mentors are also teachers and coaches for me in that big digital world. In another blog, I have discussed this and if you are reading our blog for the first time you might want to look up that link.

 

My growth by listening to leaders has been outstanding. My collaborators are also leaders, my peers are also leaders and my friends are also leaders. You just have to pick up on those traits of leadership too!

 

I have concluded that I lead too just by writing these blogs!

 

Andrew

One Half of Anywhere Business Network

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