1. Start with a plan in mind. Create a simple, informal business plan that addresses the major areas of your enterprise: marketing, cash flow, legal structure, etc.
2. Claim your space. Set up an area in your home that’s devoted exclusively to your business. Have all the office supplies and equipment you will need readily available.
3. Establish a professional presence from the start. Get business cards and letterhead printed, set up a voice-mail system to handle missed calls, and have a place to consult with clients if you invite them into your home.
4. Set the ground rules for family and friends. Let them know your business hours, and explain that you can’t be disturbed during that time.
5. Develop a contact network. Don’t become isolated. Join local business groups and the chamber of commerce to promote your business and meet other micro-business owners.
National Association for the Self-Employed
Want to improve the way you run your business? Entrepreneurs, academics, and consultants from diverse industries offer practical advice on a variety of topics each business day.
To submit a tip for consideration, first check our archive of previous tips to make sure you're not repeating a tip someone has already contributed. Then send the tip to Small Business channel contributor Michelle Dammon Loyalka. Because of the volume of material she receives, she may not respond to each individual.