This post will explore entrepreneurs with disabilities and how through entrepreneurship, they are forging a new path to freedom. Today’s post about entrepreneurs with disabilities is brought to us courtesy of Patrick Young, founder of ableusa.info, which offers a wealth of interesting articles to help persons with disabilities reach their fullest potential.
For many persons with disabilities, running their own company may not seem like the best idea with all the challenges and responsibilities they already have to bear. But for more and more persons with disabilities, that would be a mistake. In fact, a growing number of entrepreneurs with disabilities are showing how entrepreneurship is helping them forge a new pathway to freedom and independence.
If you are a person with a disability, there is no doubt you’ve got what it takes to succeed in business, as you’ve been overcoming obstacles all your life. This has given you an endless reserve of courage, stamina and patience. Are you ready to put those skills and experiences to use on your own project? If so, here are some suggestions to get things running smoothly as you join the growing ranks of entrepreneurs with disabilities.
Choose the Right Niche
There are things you’re good at, things you love doing, and things that’ll earn you money. You’re in luck if you can think of a service or business idea that meets all three criteria. Don’t be afraid to use your imagination, as some money-making ideas might seem a little off the wall. For example, you may not have considered how lucrative taking care of pets can be, but there’s huge demand for both dog walkers and dog boarders. That might be the perfect niche if you’re an animal lover and have the entrepreneurial drive.
Find Attractive Financing
No matter what market you enter, you need financing to kick things off. There are a few options for entrepreneurs with disabilities, such as the nonprofit Accion, which offers loans of between $300 to $1,000,000 to cover typical startup costs (like new office equipment) as well as assistive technology and workplace modifications. Though not geared toward the disabled, microlenders including, Kabbage and OnDeck, may see some promise in your project as well.
Set Up a Proper Office
You could always rent office space, but a growing number of entrepreneurs run their businesses from home to slash expenses and avoid lengthy commutes. There’s an added bonus for the disabled: It already suits your personal needs, unlike many other locations. You’ll need to find a quiet area free of distractions so you can concentrate. A designated room, rather than a corner of the living room or your bedroom, would be ideal. If one’s not available, create a peaceful nook using dividers and cabinets. Proper lighting and storage are also a must.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed in the first few weeks of your new business, as there is so much to do. That won’t happen if you stick to a schedule and take things step by step with a business plan and marketing strategy, say the folks at Business 2 Community. These will keep you from floundering around and wasting energy on dead-end leads while you could be drawing in clients with a successful mix of direct marketing, online promotion and social media efforts.
Get Help Around the House
By this point, things should be rolling, but putting your plan into action and joining the ranks of entrepreneurs with disabilities may require a little more time than you expected. That’s all well and good, but you’ve got a household to look after, and that may require a little help so that all the chores get done and the pets are fed. Fortunately, there are a whole slew of other small businesses that are there to meet your needs.
Look After Yourself
With everything going on around you, it’s easy to forget about your well-being. However, now is a worse time than ever to neglect your health, as a sudden illness or bout of depression could derail all of your efforts. Make it a priority to prepare and eat balanced meals loaded with fruits, veggies and whole grains, and try to fit at least a half hour of exercise into your morning routine. Of course, that’s all for naught if you don’t get a good night’s rest, so keep the overtime to a minimum.
The bottom line is that if you’re a person with a disability, you’ve got what it takes to succeed in business. You too can join the ranks of successful entrepreneurs with disabilities–it’s just a matter of using your time wisely and not getting discouraged by minor setbacks. If you can do that, you’re on a one-way road to financial success and personal freedom.
If you’re interested in learning more about opportunities for entrepreneurs with disabilities or potential funding sources to support entrepreneurs with disabilities, contact me today and let’s talk! Here is another article relating to entrepreneurs with disabilities that you might find interesting too.