There are several key elements to the work-from-home success formula. These are important ingredients – non-negotiables. Though much about being a successful nest worker is flexible – these items are not. And one that is on the top of the list (if not the first) is support from your family – especially from your spouse or partner.
Deciding to make the leap to self employment is hard. Add in the work from home piece, and it gets harder. If you don’t have the buy-in and full support from your spouse, you’re almost guaranteed to struggle.
A lot has been written about what you need to succeed as a home-based business. From my experience, as well as the many folks I’ve talked to and worked with, having the support and understanding of your spouse makes the journey so much more manageable.
Wendy Piersall from eMoms at Home has an excellent post that provides a very poignant example about support:
I will never forget the conversation we had when a six figure job dangled before me just a few short months ago. I came to you to discuss the situation, and you were open and fair in your assessment of the decision before me. Jump into another job that I would enjoy, that paid great, but I would grow bored with quickly… OR tighten up the reigns, trust me (even though my last home based business didn’t go so well at the end), and give me the time to grow a business I know in my heart I was born to do.
… this time, you held me close, and you told me you were committed to raising your sales so that I could follow my heart and start this business.
As part of the post, Wendy asks “Who is in your life that you appreciate?” When it comes to the opportunity of working from home and running my own business, I can say that it would not have been possible without the support of my wife. (Who’s birthday just happens to be today – Happy Birthday!). Through the ups and downs, she’s been there to give advice, listen to my complaining and crazy ideas, and offer unwavering support.
Getting the Support from Day One
For those in the early stages, here’s some practical advice about approaching your spouse about going out on your own. When discussing your plans about launching a new home-based venture with your family, it’s important to listen carefully to their concerns. It’s up to you to clearly explain your plans, and it wouldn’t hurt to have a one page business plan to show that you’ve thought things through. But be sure to explain with your heart, along with the business particulars. This is your dream, and passion will go a long way to garner support. Treat your spouse as an investor, because that is truly what they will be. By presenting your vision as a viable and well though out operation, rather than some hair-brained scheme, you have shown them that you value their view and want their support.