After retiring her professional dancing shoes, Judi Sheppard Missett taught a dance class to civilians in order to earn some extra cash. But she soon learned that women who came to her studio were less interested in learning precise steps than they were in losing weight and toning up. Sheppard Missett then trained instructors to teach her routines to the masses, and Jazzercise was born. A franchise deal followed. Today, the company has more than 8,900 locations worldwide.
Entrepreneurs need to practice effective communication both within their firm and with external partners and investors in order to launch and growth a venture and enable it to survive. An entrepreneur needs a communication system that links the staff of her firm and connects the firm to outside firms and clients. Entrepreneurs should be charismatic leaders, so they can communicate a vision effectively to their team and help to create a strong team. Communicating a vision to followers may be well the most important act of the transformational leader. Compelling visions provide employees with a sense of purpose and encourage commitment. According to Baum et al. and Kouzes and Posner, the vision must be communicated through written statements and through in-person communication. Entrepreneurial leaders must speak and listen to articulate their vision to others.
Another idea someone could do from home is to start a service or write a software program that scours local ad listings (like craigslist) for a particular used item a person wants to buy. They have services like this for new items, but not used. I know others like me who are keeping their eye out for something used (like a canopy king bed!) but don’t have the time or inclination to search for it every day.
I kind of “fell into” my at home business. I was a customer of their website division a few years ago. When my husband got downsized – I closed my business and started working with my current company. It’s been such a blessing to be able to stay at home (2 girls in elementary school) and help contribute to our family. When our company started another division helping non-profits with alternative funding – it was something I was passionate about. I feel very blessed to have found the real deal with my at home businesses and in the two years I’ve been with them – it all keeps getting better.
The ability of entrepreneurs to work closely with and take advice from early investors and other partners (i.e. their coachability) has long been considered a critical factor in entrepreneurial success. At the same time, economists have argued that entrepreneurs should not simply act on all advice given to them, even when that advice comes from well-informed sources, because entrepreneurs possess far deeper and richer local knowledge about their own firm than any outsider. Indeed, measures of coachability are not actually predictive of entrepreneurial success (e.g. measured as success in subsequent funding rounds, acquisitions, pivots and firm survival). This research also shows that older and larger founding teams, presumably those with more subject expertise, are less coachable than younger and smaller founding teams.