Earn more, work less

By at home

earnmoreworklessFree up some hours by working smarter and doing what you love…

You work full-time, earn a fair wage, but don’t have a life. The spare hours you do have are spent doing the jobs you didn’t have time to do because you were at work. So how can you still earn good money and reclaim valuable ‘me time’ in the process? Maybe it’s time to downshift and become a part-time professional. There are opportunities out there for creative and ambitious people to make big money and get a lot more flexibility – particularly if you’re working from home.

I want to be a… slimming coach
This is great for anyone who has lost a few lbs, as it can be really satisfying to help others do the same. If you’ve been through the challenge yourself, you’re an ideal candidate for a consultant. You’ll be required to run weekly meetings weighing members and giving nutrition, diet and exercise advice. In some instances, you can totally change people’s lives for the better. All you need is a caring, understanding personality and an approachable manner.

Part-time earning potential: As a self- employed slimming consultant for a slimming club such as Slimming World you can earn £150 a week for just one group, and up to £25,000 a year for taking two or three groups a week.

I want to be… a cake designer
This is one of the most flexible part-time jobs available as you can do it any time of the day that suits you. It’s creative and always a lot of fun. If you have flair and passion for cake-making and an eye for detail, then you could easily manage this. All you need to start is a good visual CV, and a website to showcase your creations. Start low-key with friends or family and the word will soon spread. To get bigger jobs you may need some training to get up to speed with hygiene requirements, say.

Part-time earning potential: Cakes for companies and weddings are big earners – costing from around £200 to £400 for a simply decorated three-tier cake. And you’re looking at around two day’s work.

I want to be a… holistic therapist
People are more health-conscious than ever, and an alternative practitioner can make a very good living treating people from home – all you need is a dedicated treatment or therapy room. It’s a case of taking clients through their health issues and working on the cause of their problem. It’s hugely varied and intuitive work.You’ll need to be interested in people, have a caring manner, and be well organised. Enrol on a course in one of the alternative therapies that most interests you. Also consider qualifying in more than one area – so you’ll have more to offer. You’ll also need to investigate what level of insurance you’ll need.

Part-time earning potential: A one-to-one consultation with a client is around £30 to £50 for an hour’s visit.

I want to be a… bargain spotter
This involves buying other people’s junk and selling it for profit on the online auction site eBay. You don’t need to be an antiques buff – just having an idea of what’s popular when you trawl through car boot sales and markets is enough. Nor do you need any qualifications. Just get familiar with eBay to get a sense for what people will buy.

Part-time earning potential: You can bring in around £400 a week. If you want to bring in big money, consider becoming a power seller. These eBay high-flyers, report making £1,000 a week on two hours’ work a day; however, they’re generally dealing in new products. Take advantage of peak times like the lead-up to Christmas and you could earn up to £4,000 a week.

Six steps: Work from home
When your office is your home, you to want be sure you’re getting it right. Here’s how…

  1. Develop a business plan: This will increase your chances of success. It should include projections for the business itself, and specifics on how you’ll manage working from home. Be realistic, you don’t want a plan that has you working more hours than you can handle or ignores obvious domestic interruptions. If you have young kids at home, plan to be less productive when they’re awake and get the bulk of your work done during their nap times or when they are being cared for by someone else.
  2. Establish a schedule: Draw up a list of what you want to achieve each day. It will keep you focused, and will help you leave the ‘office’ at a proper time each day.
  3. Differentiate your home from your office: Create a separate workspace. Depending on the business, it can be as small as a spare room or as big as a double garage. The crucial thing is that you have a place that’s interruption-free.
  4. Be professional: For some people, working from home means they can flop from their bed to the office without changing out of their PJs. But you’ll do far better if you make a point of changing into your work clothes; it’ll maintain a professional work ethic.
  5. Get connected: A good phone system and high-speed internet is a necessity. The internet provides a limitless source of information and a virtual office for you and your clients.
  6. Find a meeting place: If you’re not set up for visitors, consider using local coffee shops for business meetings – most have fast internet connections.        

This article was first published in Careers with Hayley Taylor in August 2011. [Read the digital edition here]   

 Image: Getty

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