If you have a disability, starting your own business is one great option to consider, as it can offer independence, flexibility, and the opportunity to make money while doing something you are passionate about. Today, the National Association of American Veterans outlines some of the main points for those with disabilities to consider when planning to start a business, as well as some resources to make the process a little easier.
One of the key benefits of starting a business is increased independence. You can choose what type of services you want to offer, decide your own hours, and take on whatever projects interest you the most. It also eliminates any worry about accommodation or other needs that may be required when working for another individual or organization.
Low Initial Costs
Depending on the type of business you plan to start, start-up costs may be minimal or non-existent. If you’re interested in becoming a freelancer or virtual assistant, there is no need to rent office space or invest in expensive equipment. All that’s needed are a computer, an internet connection, and some basic tools.
You can also take advantage of plenty of free tools for everything from CRM software to PDF editing tools. In fact, this may be helpful as you send files to clients – it allows you to add comments, highlight passages, and add signature fields to your PDFs.
As mentioned above, starting a business offers flexible hours, which are perfect for those living with a disability. Working from home also reduces the stress associated with getting ready and commuting each morning which can sometimes be difficult depending on individual disability needs.
Many individuals living with disabilities may have unique interests and passions that don’t necessarily line up with traditional career paths. Starting your own business gives you the opportunity to invest in something that really interests you and develop it into a successful enterprise over time. This could be anything from gardening consultation services to crafting jewelry for sale online – whatever works best for your abilities and goals!
Speaking of investment, something else you might consider is seeking out investors for your business. A word of caution, though: before doing so, make sure you check your credit score. After all, investors will want to know more about your finances, so if you have any outstanding debts or fraudulent charges you weren’t aware of, it’s best to take care of those beforehand.
When starting your own business, you have complete control over where your career path goes without having to worry about corporate red tape or bureaucracy getting in the way of progressions within an organization. You are free to choose how much risk you want to take on at any given moment, giving yourself greater freedom than ever before.
Of course, there are other concerns that will require your attention, as well. For instance, if you decide to get into ecommerce, you’ll have the benefit of engaging in a thriving new market that gives you all the freedom you could ask for, but it’s still worth taking some time to learn ways to increase your ecommerce security to make sure a security breach or an eager hacker doesn’t sink your business before it’s even launched.
The beauty of studying online is that this may help those living with disabilities to unlock the doors of knowledge they otherwise would not be able to access due to physical barriers in traditional schooling. Gaining relevant skills such as programming and data management with an IT degree provides a strong foundation for future entrepreneurs when it comes to understanding how technology works behind the scenes of their businesses. This knowledge could be invaluable down the line, making this an effective way to open up new worlds and opportunities.
Having a strong presence online will inherently increase exposure and attract potential customers/clients looking for services offered by entrepreneurs with disabilities. Remember to refine your LinkedIn page by avoiding common mistakes such as using outdated information (like old headshots) or spelling/grammar errors. Make sure everything looks professional before posting publicly.
Starting a career in business is full of amazing opportunities, whether you’re seeking more independence or trying to monetize a passion. Before starting a business, though, spend some time researching your options, updating your LinkedIn profile, and consider earning an online degree to build your foundational knowledge.
The National Association of American Veterans supports our nation’s vets through a variety of services, including job placement, legal counsel, and employment training. Visit us online to learn more about how we can help you reach your goals in civilian life.
Tanya Lee, NAAV Volunteer Contributor for this article; www.abilityvillage.org.