One such example, is diverting time on tasks you shouldn’t do. Let’s go back to the washing machine example. Your husband decides to fix it on his own instead of simply getting an expert to fix it. Why? Because it’s probably a challenge he enjoys, and it’s an accomplishment that would bring him satisfaction. However, if the value of the task is too low, you really ought to delegate it to others.
One of the prime strategies in business today is to outsource work wherever possible. Many employers, particularly small ones, don’t have enough work to warrant a full-time job. But they may parcel that works out to virtual assistants. You can become a VA with just about any type of skill. Administrative skills are most in demand, and usually involving working on very specific projects. Many times, those projects will be assigned because the business owner either lacks the time or the skills to perform them.
These are not get-rich-quick opportunities. You will need to work but the potential is there. As an example, the second one on our list is freelance writing. If you're a good writer, you can hit the ground running and earn hundreds of dollars to write once you find the right clients. If you're not a good writer, you may get paid less as you get better and find more clients. The potential is there but so is the work.
Your article is helpful, and I plan to try some of these. Over the last couple years I’ve inadvertently picked up some writing jobs by good fortune that have paid .30 – .50/word, but writing was always a sideline. Now I want to do more of it – but searches are yielding abysmal and depressing results. My content is rarely and minimally edited (by professional editors)and I turn it in on time with solid grammar and syntax. I’ve been looking and finding gigs at .01/word or less. No wonder so much of the writing I read on the web is crap, including articles written by those who don’t know the difference between “less” and “fewer.” I hope your tips will help me find some quality gigs. After all, my name is attached to it even if there’s no byline.
I need someone to pick up my 4th grader after school (3-4 afternoons per week) from the neighborhood school, bring her home, and work with her on improving her reading skills, completing homework assignments, practicing for spelling or other tests, etc., until my husband and I get home from work. My 4th grader is often eager to please, but on occasion (like if she needs a snack or her ADHD meds have run their course), she can be a bit of a challenge. She loves sports and singing and dancing so a willingness to entertain little study breaks is a must. The 8th grader may need a little help in pre-AP classes.
Also keep in mind that communication with a telecommuting team requires an extra layer of crystal clear clarity. Since almost everything is done via email (and there are no facial or body clues to read), you’ll need to make sure that you mean what you, um, type. I’ve found that shorter, more succinct sentences go a lot farther than long-winded soliloquies.
But once you’re in your home office—alone, every day—you might start to miss that collegial camaraderie. Since the UPS incident, I’ve reached out more to colleagues via IM and will post cute pics of my new puppy for my colleagues to see on Yammer. And when we’re on deadline, we even (gasp!) talk on the phone. It’s helped tremendously to make the disconnect not feel so severe. It’s a good balance between having peace and quiet when you need it and much-needed interaction with others, too.
How to Get It: Customer service is the biggest work-at-home field, with companies including Spiegel, Hilton, Best Western, HSN, 1-800-FLOWERS and many others using at-home reps. Fill out an application with staffing companies such as Arise, Alpine Access, VIPdesk, LiveOps, and Convergys, all of which vet the companies who are hiring through them. If you need benefits, search through a staffing company that will hire you as an employee (Alpine Access, VIPdesk and Convergys do this) rather than an independent contractor. If you're a contractor, you may be asked to pay a small fee (between $15 and $35) for a background check. While a fee can be a sign of a scam, independent contractors are responsible for their own expenses.
What It Is: Students in countries including Japan, Korea, France and Germany are looking for English speakers to practice with. Sessions focus on things like making professional small talk or running a meeting (trainers are provided with specifics on how to teach each topic, and are also trained themselves for two days before starting the job). Lessons take place either over the phone or on a live Internet video service like Skype — sometimes at night, because you're working with students in different time zones. You need to commit to a minimum of 20 hours a week at consistent times, and can work as many as 35 hours.
“I love working for TTEC@home. I get to interact with and help others from the comfort of my own home. (Have you ever been in Houston traffic rush hour? That says it all!) Plus, they have some of the most amazing people I’ve ever had the privilege of working with. They aren’t just here to draw a paycheck. They truly care about their co-workers. I work many miles from the brick and mortar buildings, but I have a sense of security that my coworkers have my back and I’m not alone.”
Don’t pay for opportunities: It is sometimes worth making investments in your online business – such as taking courses or paying for extra bids on freelance work platforms, but you should run a mile from anything that requires you to pay to work, such as survey sites that promise to offer lucrative opportunities but only if you pay for a subscription. With very few exceptions these are scams.
Although the demand is expected to decrease over the next decade, the opportunities are still there for travel agents who can harness the Internet to earn clients and help them plan their adventures. According to the BLS, job prospects may be best for travel agents who offer expertise in certain regions of the world, have experience planning tours or adventures, or who focus on group travel.
Who can resist the dinging sound of a new email? You, that’s who, especially if you want to stay on task. And forget about signing in to Facebook “just for a minute.” It’s easy to get distracted when you telecommute—unlikely distractions that just don’t exist at work abound at home. At the office, for example, you might visit the company kitchen once in the morning and once in the afternoon for a cup of joe (because that’s what’s appropriate), but at home, you’re hitting the fridge every hour on the hour. Or more.
From my own experience, I’ve used Textbroker to make quick cash for bills. They pay every week on Fridays and if you work a lot every day, you can usually have a substantial amount accumulated by the end of the week — definitely more than the $10 cash out threshold. The only bad thing there is you never know how much work they’ll have up to grab from the order board. But I would say that for me Textbroker has been an excellent source for getting bill money together when I need it quick. Amazon Mturk is another idea. You can cash out there at just $1 and it transfers to your bank account. There is an entire sub-forum about Mturk over at the Work Place Like Home forum where people discuss the best tasks to accept to make the most money. Mturk has a reputation for being just an extra money option, but I know for a fact there are some people making more than just extra money over there.
I’ve been rigorously studying freelancing for a while now (I plan on getting started after school ends in the first week of April) and I have to say your bog has been very helpful, especially this post. I thought cold mailing and job boards were the only places to find freelance writing job, and that it would be quite tough finding a job given the competition, but after going through this list, I think finding a job would be easier.
At Superprof, we offer more than 1000 subjects across dozens of categories (sports/ academia/hobbies/music/etc.). You don’t necessarily have to be a qualified tutor to be an effective educator. For example, a professional pianist is obviously qualified to give piano lessons but teaching involves much more than certification. It requires passion; love for your craft, enthusiasm and the ability to foster these attributes in your students. A piano teacher does not necessarily have to be a concert pianist, but they must have good ideas on how to become one and how to master the instrument and the music.
Your amazing site has helped me so much! Writing used to be just a hobby for me until I got downsized from my office job. Now, writing does not only pay the bills but has become one of my passions as well. Not only do I get to work at home enjoying the extra time for my other activities, but now I make more money compared to my previous 9-5 office job. There are no words to express how thankful I am for you guys.
This is my foot in the door and I’m following some of your other tips in order to get myself out there even more. I’m an introvert, so this is new and difficult for me. I have questioned myself countless times and am feeling a bit impatient, but I’m trying to trust the process and take it one day at a time. The warmth and encouragement that come through in your writing have helped keep me going. Thank you Elna!
Thank you for the tips. I am handicapped and a fairly new mom at 41 to our 9 month old first and only son. I have been wanting to start a blog so I can have more time for my son since I have heard that with patience you could earn okay from blogging but, I for now, I can’t let go of my day job that pays $4.50 an hour because it still pays the bills. However, after the recent typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan hit the Philippines, I know I have to pursue blogging or find a better paying writing job that doesn’t require me to sit in front of the computer for 8-9 hours a day anymore. Can anyone give me additional tips on the best way I could start a blog aside from wordpress or blogger please? Thank you.
One of the top job boards for telecommuting, FlexJobs enables you to create a custom job search profile to meet your specific needs. Select your categories (there are several under “Writing”), your preferred work schedule, your experience level and more to hone your search results down to those that best fit what you’re looking for. You can also set alerts so you’re notified when new jobs matching your search criteria are posted.
Thank you for the post! I’m a bit overwhelmed at the wealth of content I am about to scour on your site. Hours of learning, here I come! I received my first two clients a month ago (one from my dad who is a web developer and the other upon referral from my first client). I am serious about gaining more clients and setting out as a full-time writer, but the process of finding new clients has always intimidated me. I am excited to apply your advice. Congratulations, you just won a new “stalker.” 😉
If working for yourself sounds like a major pain, don’t worry. There are still plenty of real work-from-home jobs in which you can work for an established company. These are more traditional jobs where a company hires you and pays an hourly wage. Typically, these jobs involve addressing customer questions and calls which are directed virtually to your own phone.
That’s great you want to get started freelance writing! Writing for school or university is different than online writing (this post lays out some tips: https://elnacain.com/blog/5-grammar-rules-every-blogger-must-know/). But in saying that, it just takes practice and reading online content to be familiar with it! If you have the passion and motivation you can become a freelance writer!
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