Advice for Parents with Disabilities Who Want to Start Their Own Business
by Patrick Young
Founder of ableusa.info
Here’s a fact that you may not know: A higher percentage of people with disabilities are business owners than those without disabilities. If you’re a parent with disabilities, starting your own business may sound overwhelming. But the truth is there are so many opportunities out there that choosing which one to pursue could be your biggest problem. If you want to get your business up and running while raising your kids, disabilities don’t have to hold you back. Here is some information to help get you started.
If you want to get a small business up and running, there are many ways to get assistance. There are grants and programs offered by the government and other organizations that are specifically created for people with disabilities who want to start their own businesses. We’re talking hundreds of millions of dollars worth of government grants (about 1,200 federal and 24,000 at the state level), including many that help existing business owners looking to expand their business. Along with government initiatives, there are about 32,000 different assistance funds offered by private organizations and 22,000 scholarship funds for the education industry.
Working from Home
One of the hardest things about working with a disability is that your transportation and mobility is often limited. One way to solve that problem is to run your business from home. Home-based businesses typically involve a simple set-up: a computer, a telephone, an internet connection, and very little legal work if you’re a sole proprietor. In this day and age, you can have access to pretty much any business tool or service you need online. When you work from home, you can make your own schedule and create a personalized workstation tailored to your needs and preferences. It can also mean that you get to spend more time with your kids.
The possibilities of home-based businesses you can run are endless. You can make products and sell them on Amazon or Etsy, or become an online reseller. You can become a freelance writer or content producer, or get paid to do your own market research. If you love canines, start your own dog-boarding or dog-walking business. If you have a talent for fixing things, start repairing electronic devices or fixing up bicycles. You can make food products for the farmers market or even open up a cafe or coffee shop and live on site.
It’s no secret that technology has the potential to make or break your business. Even word of mouth is largely digital these days, ranging from reviews and recommendations on social media to formal online review sites. In other words, if you want technology to work in your favor, you must embrace it. And you can start by actively managing social media sites, either by teaching yourself or hiring an expert to update your pages, post specials, and respond to questions, comments, and complaints.
In addition to managing your online reputation, you should invest in up-to-date tools that will help you do business. If you run an boutique, that means a credit card machine that accepts multiple payment types and prints receipts. If you sell your wares online, it’s about choosing a platform that exposes you to the most potential clients. If you manage employees, then you need a scheduling software to keep things running smoothly. No matter what business you’re in, the right technology can help you succeed.
Being Your Own Boss
Once you’ve identified the right business for you, start making a business plan. When you are your own boss, you make the rules. However, just like with anyone who is working for themselves, that also means you’re solely responsible for making your own plans, setting your own goals, and putting yourself in the position to accomplish those goals. If you have the personality, passion, and entrepreneurial spirit to persevere and keep yourself motivated, becoming your own boss could end up being a very most rewarding career decision.
There are many people with disabilities who start their own business from scratch. With an entrepreneurial spirit, nothing should hold you back, and there’s also plenty of financial assistance you can access if you need it. Consider all of your options and choose a business that you’re passionate about and that you believe you can thrive in. Look into working from home and being your own boss. It just may be the best way for you to remain a good parent, maintain your independence, and have a successful career.
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