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Skills to Start a Home Business

Find out if you have what it takes to start a home business.


To start a home business, you need a diverse skill set. That's a given. First you need knowledge of your particular business and you need the right personality to work at home. And then you'll need some essential knowledge about basic business practices. But one of the most important elements to start a home business off right are these 7 skills.

1. Organization Skills

Starting a work at home business requires good organization skills because being a home business owner means keeping a lot of balls in the air. And if you don't want them to rain down on you, you'll need to set some organization systems in place to keep track of money, goods and time.

More: Organizing Home and Work in One Place

2. Knack for Self-Directed Learning

Most work at home business start-ups don’t have an IT team that can solve technical problems or their own accounting department. Most likely these things are going to be up to you at first, so being able to quickly learn new skills and solve problems is essential. Yes, you can eventually hire someone to handle these types of things, but you need to learn enough to know when to hires someone, who to hire and if the jobs are being done right.

3. Financial Savvy

If you don't already know your way around a balance sheet, you have to be willing to learn if you want to start a home business. Being able to see the big picture financially is essential when making business decisions.

More: What's the Difference Between a Bookkeeper and an Accountant?

4. Sales Ability

Even if your work at home business is not a sales-oriented one, as a business owner you will likely need to do some new business development. And a little sales savvy can go a long way when you start a home business. If this doesn’t come naturally to you, then you may have to work harder to grow your work at home business.

More: Five Personality Traits for a Sales Career

5. Good Writing Skills

In most any work at home business, so much of your communication is done in written form. Whether it’s via email or through written proposals, your written communication with clients and supplier is sign of your professionalism. Nothing will turn off a potential client like misspelled words and difficult to decipher communications.

More: How to Write Email That Gets a Response

6. Pleasant Phone Manner

Depending on your work at home business, the telephone may be as important (or more) communication tool than email. Obviously, if you run a virtual call center this is true. But no matter what you do, sounding professional on the phone will open more doors for your home business.

More: Starting a Home Call Center

7. Deadline-Oriented Personality

"The buck stops here." Let that be your motto for you as you start a home business. Delivering your product or services within the time frame promised will bring repeat customers. Learn to manage your time efficiently.

More: Time Management Tips for WAHMs

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