How do you deal with family that doesn't consider your home-based business a "real job"?
Home based business is a great option to earn money while enjoying time with your family and dear ones. However, the other side of it is that people do not recognize that you are still working hard and earning money. You might need to do other works during your work time as people see that you can spare time at any point in the day.
However, dealing with this issue is to be successful in your home based business on the first hand. Earning money with considerable efforts would definitely speak on your part. Secondly, make your family understand that home based business is not an easy task and you need to be dedicated and committed as you would be in a real job.
Thirdly, make them understand the positive notes of your business, your work nature, clients, earning potential and future graph. The whole issue arises due to lack of understanding of this segment and educating them in the right manner can do a great thing.
Great question and I still live it with it. I've been writing online for a few years and have reached many goals I set out for myself, but I have come to realize that many people especially family don't consider my online writing a career.
I don't deal with it anymore. When I'm asked what did I do today I reply not much. My family would say, what? What do you mean? I then tell them I worked online and I get the rolled eyes or that's it?
I now laugh and move on and having that attitude has helped me earn respect for my growing Internet Business. It's just the way it is.
I also have that issue. Families mean well, but they will not understand how important your work is. They may think that since it's not a nine to five job you really don't have to be there because it's not mandatory. Would they constantly call you if you were working a regular job outside of your home? Let them know that you have a block schedule and that it is strictly for work. Treat your work like a real job.. in other words like a Business.
Depends on the job.
The problem is some people consider MLM "home based business" as well, and while sometime it is, very often they are just borderline scams that rely on social circles to sell products that would not have hit market otherwise. When 99% of MLM participants lose money, it's not a sound business.
Other home-based jobs, like babysitting, homecare, home cooking and such have real income and real customers, but are harder to get.
The solution is NOT to ignore your family. The trick is to sit down, have them explain what don't they understand about your business, why they don't consider it a "real job", and consider things from THEIR point of view. Also, explain your side and have THEM consider YOUR point of view.
Which side makes more sense? Which side is using rational arguments instead of irrational emotion? You may need a neutral third-party (maybe a friend of the family) to arbitrate.
You may need to give you and your family a "deadline", of maybe 30 days to 60 days to see some sort of result / goal. If you don't meet the goal, it may be time to abandon the business. If it does meet the goal, your family have to stop bothering you.
I used to work a daily job where i had to show up at an exact time, sit down at my computer and work, and then leave when the work day was done. Today, I got up showered, made coffee, and sat down at my computer to work. I'll stop when my workday is done. What's the difference if you're still making a living?
The problem with any online entrepreneurial adventure is that it takes time. In many of our cases it will take time for our voices to get noticed. Family and friends lose patience fast and I've had other offers for work. But this is a one time chance to write and possibly earn the opportunity to do it for the rest of my life. Doing what I want to do and getting paid for it? Doesn't sound bad to me.
Thanks for the feedback. I've been very stressed and upset about this. I've used all my assertiveness skills and communication training to try and resolve things. No avail. I'm out of ideas and feel backed into a corner ...
suvitharoja - I WISH the proof were in the pudding. I've been self-employed as a Content Provider and Consultant for 4 years now. While I don't usually discuss my income, my family has seen that it supports me.
lanaz - YES! I have a client that needs me to work in his office when he contracts me. My mom used to call for a chat or drop into the office unannounced to visit. I've explained that it was unprofessional and made me look bad in front of my client. Mercifully, she stopped doing that.
suvitharoja & kschang - I discussed things with them *several times* over the past 4 years, yet my family thinks I'm at their disposal, because I'm "just goofing around on the computer all day."
I've explained repeatedly that just because I work from home, doesn't mean I'm actually available all the time. I've outlined what I do with my time, what I do for clients, how long it takes me - add in my personal life with my SO and personal activities ... I've asked them several times to call before coming over and now if I'm lucky, they call when they're in the car about 10-20 minutes away .... hurray for progress :-/
I've asked them several times to let me know at least 2 days in advance of planned events and get-togethers or even when they'd like me to pop over for a casual visit. They exchange this infuriating look like I'm being a prima donna and totally ignore my request.
I have set my boundaries, explained them to EVERYONE very clearly and enforced them repeatedly over the past few years to the point that I refuse to change my plans when folk show up announced and have missed several family events. They just won't co-operate and then get furious with me.
Don't pay attention to them, let the results speak for themselves. Laughing all the way to the bank. Going to work in my pajamas and taking vacations when and where I like is how I show family my home based business is the real deal!
by BPO 9 years ago
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