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Cleaning Houses for a Living Has Some Unexpected Benefits
If you're looking for a way to earn a living or just to make some extra money on the side, cleaning houses for a living is probably not the first thing that comes to mind.
Cleaning houses? Doesn't that sound like a lot of unpleasant, grungy work?
Yes, it does sound pretty unpleasant, and that is exactly why there is very good profit in it. Most people hate to clean. Add to that how busy everyone is, and you have a recipe for success.
Maybe you're not so fond of doing your own housework. But having your own business cleaning houses could be surprisingly enjoyable, because there are many benefits to this work. Here are just a few:
By learning how the professionals clean houses, you can do it much more quickly and easily than you ever did before.
You can start this business with a little simple promotion and gain customers within a week or two.
You can begin with less than $100.
You can select your own schedule. Maybe you want to work particular days or evenings. For example, if you have children, you might want to work at times when your partner is at home to watch the kids.
You can choose where you work, how far away from your home you will go, what neighborhoods you will work in.
You can choose whether to do all the work yourself, work with one other person, or hire others to do the cleaning while you devote yourself more to management. This last kind of arrangement can make you more money but does also have the potential for more stress. Recently I emailed a friend who is about to be laid off, suggesting that he consider cleaning houses for a living. He's a management sort of guy, so I suggested that he do it that way. His reply indicated he thought it would be a bunch of headaches.
Is a business cleaning houses for you?
It's not for everyone. If you have physical conditions that would make it impossible, then of course it's out. If you have trouble getting around to doing what you say you will do, you might end up with some unhappy customers. But if you are responsible and like the idea of working for yourself, full-time or part-time, in a job with low stress and surprising income potential, then do consider cleaning houses for a living.
Rosana Hart tells you more about the opportunities for cleaning houses and offices for a living at her website, http://infoandhelp.com.
Hot Business Trends for 2006? And Beyond: Maybe One Will Turn Into a Creative Business Idea for You
I always look forward to the December issue of Entrepreneur magazine. That's the issue that features the publisher's annual pick of hot businesses, markets, and trends for smart entrepreneurs ? or those who aspire to be. Some of the high tech businesses cited like mobile gaming or online learning tend to require six and seven figure start up costs. This can seem daunting (although not impossible) for the person just venturing into self-employment. So I've decided to focus on the markets, trends, and businesses that speak to someone operating on a somewhat more limited budget. Let's start with hot markets: HOT MARKET: Middle-Aged Women Since I've recently entered my last year in my 40s, I thought it only appropriate to start with this group (although like most boomers, I still have a hard time thinking of myself as anything close to "middle aged"). Not surprisingly, products and services for women in their 40s and 50s that center around anti-aging and menopause are hot. The magazine cites such promising areas as counseling, exercise spas, yoga, smoking cessation programs? any product or service that helps women stay healthy and feel good about themselves ? both inside and out. The reference to smoking cessation got me thinking? Residential treatment facilities for other forms of substance abuse are common- place, but I've personally never seen a retreat, spa, or other residential-type place specifically aimed at people who need help quitting smoking, and who would benefit from doing so outside their home environment. I'm picturing morning walks, meditation, massage, support groups, good food, and of course, lots and lots of punching bags! HOT MARKET: Toddlers/Tweens/Teens According to market research firm Packaged Facts, last year 5 to 14 year olds spent $10 billion on food and beverages. Other favorite product areas for kids are sports, fashion, music, and technology. And apparently home décor and remodeling isn't just for adults anymore (who knew?). Stores like IKEA and Pottery Barn are starting to selling home furnishing products aimed at teens. With baby boomers having more discretionary income with which to spoil their grandchildren, babies and toddlers have also become hot markets. Online start-up ELittle Luxuries offers designer baby furniture and more than 600 other upscale baby items. (http://www.eLittleLuxuries.com) HOT MARKET: Overweight People After reading how much kids spend on food and beverages, it's no surprise that 15% of children and teens are overweight. But we adults have them beat. A whopping 64% of Americans are considered obese or overweight. Businesses that offer products and services to help people slim down and develop more healthy habits are the most obvious. But entrepreneurs willing to think outside the "solve the problem" box by looking for ways to make overweight people's lives easier verses trying to fix them, will also do well. HOT MARKET: Metrosexuals With the enormous appeal of stylish soccer super star David Beckham and shows like Bravo's Queer Eye for the Straight Guy where gay men help straight men with fashion, grooming, home décor, and social skills, a growing number of heterosexual men are allowing themselves to tap into their fashionable side. One enterprising guy who jumped into the metrosexual market early has seen phenomenal growth. With $20,000 and a dream, Tom Granese launched Regiments, an online store that sells high-end grooming products for men. Less than two years later, Tom opened his first storefront in Dallas with a projected $210,000 in first year in-store sales. HOT MARKET: Hispanics The Hispanic market is certainly nothing new ? in fact it's made Entrepreneur's list for many years now. The magazine cites opportunities in anything from food and entertainment, to financial services and Web services. Now let's look at two of Entrepreneur's picks for hot trends in 2004? HOT TREND: Outdoor Living Spaces Into gardening or design? According to Joanne Kostecky of the American Nursery & Landscape Association, and president of her own garden design company, the concept of outdoor living rooms that is so popular in the south and some urban areas is beginning to reach the rest of the country. The fact that more consumers are investing in courtyards and elaborate gardens means the gardening and outdoor design businesses are bound to grow! HOT TREND: Fast-Casual Food Health and taste conscious consumers on the go are turning to fast- casual restaurants and chains. In my own small town of Northampton, two of the more popular joints are benefiting from the fast-casual boom. One serves upscale burritos (my favorite is the Thai burritos) and the other is a hip soup, salad, and sandwich joint that opened in a greatly remodeled former Taco Bell restaurant. Idea: Back in my old softball days I always wished someone would cater to all those hungry players and fans by starting a high quality food wagon. Other Hot Trends? Boating and water sports, the hunger for low- carb foods (a trend being taken seriously by restaurants, grocery stores, and food manufacturers), oils and sauces, and multiculturalism which includes the gay and lesbian markets. Hot markets and hot trends lead to hot businesses. Here are some of Entrepreneur's picks? HOT BUSINESS: Children's Enrichment Programs With so many parents in the workforce, more kids than ever before are engaged in extracurricular and after school activities. If you like the idea of working with kids, you can opt to open a physical location like a gym, dance or art studio, or camp, take your program into the schools, or provide private lessons. If you think opening your own place is financially out of reach, think again. While $12,000 is no small sum of money, it's a lot less than a lot of people might expect they'd need to shell out to start their own dance studio. But that's how much former dance student turned instructor Archer Alstaettter dug up in cash and credit cards to found Dance Emotion in Irvine, California. That was five years ago. Today Archer's studio has 500 clients and expects 600-plus to be enrolled by spring. You go Archer! HOT BUSINESS: Home Improvement Remodeling, refurbishing, and redecorating are all the rage. There are some 30 cable shows on home improvement alone. And home improvement isn't all about décor. Worth noting are businesses that help home owners maximize the space they have as well as those making homes more accessible to an aging population. (To read about a unique, highly successful, and legitimate home business opportunity that matches home owners with reputable home repair contractors go to http://www.ChangingCourse.com/hrnsuccess.htm) HOT BUSINESS: Yoga & Pilates According to Entrepreneur, companies are bending over backwards to cater to the growing market of people practicing yoga. Clothes, mats, DVDs, music, and classes aimed at seniors, pregnant women and children as young as three are just a few products and services aimed at this growing market. And with a reported 47 million Americans taking Pilates, a work out that builds abdominal muscles, opportunities abound for gym owners and instructors alike. If you like the idea of teaching Pilates, studio owner Maria Leone recommends starting out by keeping overhead low. She suggests renting space for one-on-one sessions from a small gym or chiropractic office. Fees for a typical Pilates session range from $50 to $70 an hour. Meditate on that! HOT BUSINESS: Upscale Pet Services According to the American Pet Product Manufacturers Association, Americans spent an estimated $31 billion on pets in 2003. A few of the luxury services cited include pet hotels complete with heated floors, limousine rides, day cruises, and personal shoppers. And apparently the spa trend has extended to the pet world with exfoliating treatments, aromatherapy, liposuction (I kid you not), and chiropractic services. HOT BUSINESS: Outsourcing Outsourcing is one of those good new-bad news things. If your job is being eliminated because it's cheaper for your company to outsource functions like HR, accounting, and network security, then outsourcing is a bad thing. Outsourcing is particularly hot in IT ? and when it comes to outsourcing jobs overseas, it's also controversial. The good news for freelancers is the federal government plans to open 850,000 jobs to outsourcing, with $85 billion in federal IT contracts to be awarded over the next three years Other Hot Businesses: Spas, organic foods, online matchmaking, senior care, wireless, tech security, and voiceover IP (VoIP). If you believe as I do that it's better to be the boss, than to have one, why not make 2004 the year you start putting your entrepreneurial plans into action? You don't have to quit your job or mortgage your home to get the ball rolling. You might resolve to do some research, start putting together a business plan, take a course on marketing, glass blowing, woodworking, web design, or whatever sparks your fancy, get certified to teach yoga, buy a book on how to launch a successful on-line business, start a Barbara Sher style Success Team? or just order a subscription to Entrepreneur. If you don't already subscribe to Entrepreneur you can do so at http://www.Entrepreneur.com. The site also features a ton of free resources for anyone who already is ? or dreams of ? working for themselves. For other free resources for people who want to start their own businesses visit http://www.ChangingCourse.com/newbiz.htm Okay, but what if you don't see a trend, market, or business here that speaks to you? Then find the one that does! I had a client who is crazy for horses and photography. It took me all of 30 seconds on Google.com to find a group called the Equine Photographers Network. In addition to their conference this February in Florida, the group offers a free public online discussion group with over 700 members who range from top-of-their-field working pros to amateur photographers to magazine editors and writers to horse owners, all interested in improving their equine photography skill and knowledge. Learn all about the Equine Photographers Network at http://www.EquinePhotographers.net. The way to find the "hottest" business idea for you is to get in touch with the passion that burns the brightest in your heart. Then make 2004 the year resolve to you take those first bold steps on behalf of your dream!
17 Surefire Ways to Annoy Potential Employers
Despite the President's encouraging words, the job market is still in sorry shape. There are more job seekers than job openings, so do NOT make things harder on yourself by doing any of the things on this list! Never, ever do these!
Top 10 Skills for New World of Work
There are many changes coming in the world of work, such as increased competition, the need for more education and certifications, and the trend to change careers 5-7 times in a lifetime. No matter what job or career path you decide to take, there are some basic skills that all employers look for. To succeed in the modern world of work, keep your skill set up- to- date. The following is a list of the top ten skills needed for the new world of work.
Tips For Successful Job Hunting: How To Get A Job Without A Resume
I am in my mid-thirties, and, as you can imagine, I have changed and looked for jobs many times in my life. No matter how successful was in my job hunting research, I realized that there are certain ground "rules" that need to be respected; otherwise, we will not get what we want from our careers.
Resume Objectives ... The Hidden Pitfalls
Why Use Resume Objectives
How To Find A Job Writing Grant Applications
Do you have what it takes to land a job doing grant writing? Many people are looking for ways to develop a freelance business, but unless you know what it takes to do so, you might as well stop trying. There are several fields in which you can learn and have many jobs waiting for you. But, in others, you will need to properly be prepared for them before they pass you by. Here, we will talk a little about how to find jobs in grant writing.
What Me? Lie On My Resume? Who Will Know?
The temptation to lie on a resume is great! How can it hurt if I stretch the truth a bit? Employers see lots of resumes. How are they going to know who lies and who doesn't?
When the Teacher Becomes the Student
A relationship expert once said that during an argument, there's usually three sides to every story: his side, her side, and of course, the truth.
It is Still Possible to be Upwardly Mobile in America!
Yes, it's still possible to be upwardly mobile in America: it's called a career in sales.
American Idol Syndrome
I like Simon, one of three judges on American Idol. I find his feedback refreshingly honest. And while his words startle me with their ego wounding potential, the traditional feel-good, let-you-down-easy, sugar-coated feedback is not much of a gift. It's hard to tell someone they're not good enough and their dreams are not going to happen, at least in this venue. But not telling them is no gift either. Some contestants rise to the challenges he throws at them. Some don't. And, some can't. Which one are you? The people who influenced me most in my career were those who gave me the hardest critiques. Stricken with a bruised-ego for days, or on occasion for months, inevitably their feedback helped me make the right life choices to improve, change direction, or stay the course with intensity. In fact, the boss who was the hardest on me is the one I thank the most. Good was not good enough if I was capable of better, and she was quick to point out when that was. No sugar coating from her. And the funny thing? When I was honest with myself, I knew she was right. Being honest with yourself is one of the challenges to winning at working. We all have talents and abilities, but they're not always in the areas we pursue at work. Too many people I've run across in my career have American Idol Syndrome (AIS). Like Idol contestants auditioning with little or no singing ability, these people believe they are good at what they do. They can't understand why they don't get the promotion, the outstanding review, or the highest increases. They view themselves as varsity team material, but they play with junior varsity skills. When I was a freshman at Stanford, I got a D in biology. Stanford graded on a bell-curve, so an 84% that might traditionally put me in a B category, was near the class bottom. Accustomed to A's, first quarter grades woke me up. At first, I rationalized a D at Stanford was an A or a B at most any other school. But, reality prevailed. I wasn't at another school. If I was going to compete at the school I was at, it was time to use more than high school skills to bring results. Are you applying yourself? Are you as good as you could be to get the raise, the promotion, or the more interesting work? If these are things you want, don't suffer from AIS. Give yourself some Simon-esk feedback. Ego aside. A Simon-esk answer to the questions, "how good are you?" and "are you in the right field?" offers you a chance at becoming happier and more successful at working. The answers give you choices: you can stay the course; find a playing field at your skill level; improve your skills to compete where you are; or change directions. (c) 2004 Nan S. Russell. All rights reserved.
Job Hunting Tips: Staying Active
Unemployment is depressing: financial pressures stress you out, looking for work is humiliating, and your fragile self-confidence reels under the blows of indifference and rejection.
How To Get More Interviews In Your Job Search
Richard Bolles, job search guru and author of What Color Is Your Parachute? predicts that you can expect to search for work 1-2 months for every $10,000 you hope to earn. So, if you're looking for a $40,000 a year position, you may search for 4-8 months to land it. Back when the economy sizzled, that job search length would have seemed outrageous, but now, many people would be thrilled to only search for 4-8 months.
Dissatisfied With Work? Perhaps Its You
Just about every month, there's a new research report detailing the seemingly higher and higher degree of worker dissatisfaction. Whether it's a Gallup poll or a Conference Board report, the results are strikingly similar -- workers are becoming more and more dissatisfied with their work.
Youre Fired Isnt The Finale
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, March 2004 had the largest gain in hiring in nearly four years. But as of then, there were still about 8 million Americans without jobs, and almost 23% of those had been unemployed for six months or more.
How to Crash - Proof Your Job Search
Think you have the speed, endurance, and know-how to fix what's broken? Bet not. The smartest people in the world are those who can leave their ego at the door, and know when its wise to seek help.
Travel Writer Jobs, What Are They And How To Find Them
Travel writing jobs are few and far between. Getting into this field is hard to do and requires a lot of training and experience. But, there are many benefits to them. There are many individuals who would love to get employment opportunities in this field. And, because the world is faster and faster becoming accessible to more people, increasing employment availability can be found for travel jobs as well. But, how does a person get in and how do they do their job?
Risk-taking - Get Your Feet Wet!
We often use the phrase, "Get Your Feet Wet" when we are just beginning to learn how to do something or are about to pioneer a new initiative. When we participate in a project for the first time, there is usually a hesitancy to step out into the unknown.
The Interview - A Few Tips for Making a Great First Impression
Searching for employment is one of the most nerve-racking activities to engage in. As if the direct need for income is not stressful enough, the process of writing a résumé, networking in your industry, and applying for jobs can leave anyone shaking in their tracks. Once you have hit the pavement and made a few contacts the phone calls should start coming in. With a little effort, hopefully a phone call could lead to an interview; which happens to be one of the most horrifying portions of career building. With the completion of a good interview, a job offer is just a step away. Here are few tips of turning any interview into a memorable experience for the Employer (and just might help you land the job!):
Cross Cultural Interviews
At this moment in time, the increase in cross border human traffic has meant that companies are no longer dealing with a homogenous native community from which they recruit their staff. Companies are now facing cross cultural challenges in how they recruit, manage and develop a multi-cultural staff. One area of note where HR and management are finding difficulties is in the interview room.
2 Job-Search Success Stories
Here are two success stories from my readers who found great new jobs last week. As you read each story, ask yourself, "How could I apply this to my job hunt?"
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