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7 Creative Job Ideas For Stay-At-Home Moms

7 Creative Job Ideas For Stay-At-Home Moms
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Some people feel that being a stay-at-home mom is a literal death sentence for a woman’s professional career. We call those people sexists. Sure, when you’ve got a small baby to take care of, or a couple of the little rascals, you pretty much have your hands full. However, once the little ones have grown up a bit and start school, you’ll have some extra time on your hands, particularly if your partner is there to help you out.

A busy mom will also want to have some quality alone time to just kick back and relax, so we’ll need to look at some career opportunities that don’t take a lot of time out of your day and provide you with a creative outlet – doing something you enjoy will make it seem less like work, and you’ll be motivated to keep learning and improving.

So, here are seven great jobs that you can do from home in just a few hours a day, while earning some extra cash on the side.

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1. Create your own clothing line

Launching a full-blown clothing line may be Herculean task for a beginner, but you can start out nice and slow – design some cute scarves, creative T-shirts, small accessories, and more. Take some time to work on your designs and hone your skills, and be sure to do some online research to stay up to date with the latest fashion trends. Etsy is a good place to start for anyone offering unique handmade garments and accessories, but you can eventually start offering your clothes on your own website, which we will get to later, or even through Facebook.

2. Sell delicious homemade food

We live in an age when people are turning to healthy food options made from fresh ingredients and with limited amounts of additives. This gives moms with good cooking skills an opportunity to market their homemade meals and maybe even turn their operation into a successful full-time business a few years down the line. Jams are a particularly popular option, but you can go with a wide variety of foods that don’t spoil easily, like cookies, sauces, almond milk, and so on. You can sell your food locally, or you can offer it online through a website or a shop on your own blog, which brings us to our next point.

3. Start a mom blog

Although a lot of people have a talent for writing and plenty of useful experience that they can share with others, they are reluctant to take the plunge and start their own blog. This is usually down to the fact that they overestimate the costs involved. Don’t get me wrong, you’ll need to invest a bit of money into blogging, but you’re not going to need a $5000 website and a team of writers and editors. Register a domain, cover the hosting costs, get a decent WordPress blog theme (which can be free), and you’re ready to get started.

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You might want to invest in a new desktop or laptop computer, but you can always do a bit of maintenance work to get your old computer to work faster and it will serve you well. Then, it’s all about creating a content schedule and investing some time and effort into developing your own writing style. Be genuine, give advice, create “how to” articles or videos, and engage your audience both in the comments and on social media.

4. Become YouTube Guru

Setting up a YouTube account and posting some lifestyle, how to, cooking, parenting, or DIY videos can actually be a good first step for a stay-at-home mom looking to start an online career. It’s less of a hassle then setting up a website of your own, but you should definitely get a blog up and running once your channel grows. You’ll need a decent computer, good camera and microphone, a lighting setup (which you can make yourself), editing software, and some basic video editing skills.

You can get started for a few hundred bucks with a very basic setup, and as long as you have creative ideas, a unique personality, and fun and informative content that you put up daily, then you’ll be able to upgrade your equipment as your channel picks up. When you become a YouTube partner, you’ll earn money from the ads on your videos, which can be quite a nice sum, even with a smaller channel.

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5. Write children’s books

Freelance writing is on most lists of good jobs for stay-at-home moms, but it can be dull and unfulfilling, particularly for someone who is creative, a good writer, and has tons of great ideas. A different route to take would be going all in and writing short stories or books for children. You’ll need to focus on a particular age group and decide whether you’ll go with the classic anthropomorphic animal characters and a more educational approach, a thrilling adventure, something humorous, or perhaps an outside-the-box idea that covers serious themes and still mixes some of the previously mentioned elements. It’s not that difficult to self-publish a book online, and the eBook version won’t cost much to polish up and distribute.

6. Offer online training or tutoring

Skype is a wonderful thing, and it is an incredible teaching tool. You can get face to face with your students and give them some great first-hand information, show techniques, and allow them to ask any question they want. Depending on your talents and previous experience, you can give guitar lessons, singing lessons, cooking lessons, language lessons, do online fitness or martial arts coaching, and more. You can offer eBooks and instructional videos from your website to go along with the lessons, and you’ll have a very flexible schedule.

7. Become a fashion consultant

A lot of people these days have the money to buy good quality clothes, but simply lack the fashion sense to create a great outfit. On the opposite side of the coin, you have people who think that you can’t dress in a stylish, unique, and exciting way on a tight budget. If you have lots of experience in creating interesting combinations and putting together stylish outfits, you can help out those who are in dire need of some fashion advice and get paid for your efforts. It is fun, creative, and challenging at times, and will definitely make you feel like you are doing something good.

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There you have it — a number of interesting, creative, and fulfilling career ideas for stay-at-home moms, some of which have lots of potential for further growth. Who knows, maybe your part-time job will turn into a lucrative career.

More by this author

Ivan Dimitrijevic

Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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Published on July 27, 2021

15 Smart Video Conferencing Etiquette Tips to Follow

15 Smart Video Conferencing Etiquette Tips to Follow
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During the pandemic, video conferencing replaced in-person meetings and has now become the standard option for business meetings. Over the past 17 months, most workers have gotten past the video conferencing learning curve with Zoom or Microsoft Teams (or their platform of choice).

But just as with in-person meetings, attention can wax and wane. Some say we’re just not used to staring at ourselves so much on the screen. Instead of fixating on that, try employing smart video conferencing etiquette, or you may risk indiscretions that will flag you as a slacker.

Put the Pro in Professional

After more than a year of fine-tuning, here are the new rules of video conferencing etiquette.

1. Mute Your Mobile and Other Devices

The first video conference etiquette you need to know is muting your other devices. Just as in the pre-COVID days, someone’s obnoxious ring tone blaring Taylor Swift’s newest single in the middle of a meeting is also an annoyance if it happens during a Zoom meeting and so is the inevitable fumbling to turn off the sound. Even the apologies to the group get tiresome.

Also, when notifications are activated on the computer that you’re using for the meeting, the incoming message takes over the audio and you’ll miss out on snippets of the conversation. Be sure to eliminate this possible faux pas.

2. Dress the Part

While working from home, you may have fallen into the habit of slipping on your comfiest T-shirt each day. Hey, no judgments! But before you log on to your video conference, try to make an effort with your appearance.

Depending on your company culture and the importance of your meeting, consider dressing the part of the professional whom you wish to project. It will help you feel more self-assured, and others will likely take you more seriously.

For women, wear light make-up, put on earrings, and make sure your blouse is crisply pressed. For men, show up freshly shaved. Wearing a crisp collared shirt in a solid color will usually suffice.

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Pro Tip: Stay away from wearing white or black, unless those colors look great on you. Consider wearing light blue or brown instead.

3. Stage Your Workspace

Have you noticed the backdrops of experts interviewed on news shows? Bookshelves and photographs are carefully curated, and no busy-patterned furniture or artwork is in sight.

Take note of what appears behind you when you choose the location of your video conferences. Piles of junk mail on the table or stacks of folded laundry on the couch will convey more about your personal life than you care to share. Make sure you remove clutter from the camera’s eye, and present a tidy, orderly workspace to your colleagues, coworkers, and bosses.

4. Put Some Thought Into Lighting and Perspective

Be aware that in a video conference, your computer camera can actually make you look up to ten pounds heavier depending on where you sit. But you can easily drop those added pounds by moving back from the screen to diminish the wide-angle distortion.

Frame your head on the screen by tilting the screen up or down. Also, it’s best to not place yourself in front of a window or bright light, which makes you appear in shadow. Instead, face the light source, moving it (or yourself) until you have a flattering amount of illumination. You can also purchase some small spotlights that allow you to add light as needed.

Pro Tip: If your lights add too much redness to your skin, consider counter-balancing with a green filter.

Remember That Half of Life Is Showing Up

5. Arrive on Time

In the old days of in-person meetings, it was nearly impossible to slip in late into a meeting unnoticed. In today’s video conferences, logging in late still shows poor form. Instead, strive to arrive five minutes early and get yourself settled.

Once the meeting is underway, the host may be less attentive about late arrivals waiting to be let in. Diverting the host’s attention away from the meeting with a tardy entry request is the ultimate giveaway that you didn’t honor the schedule. If you don’t want a black mark against you, log in on time.

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6. Turn on Your Video

Few people like to see their face on the screen, but buck up and turn on your camera in video conferences. In most cases, it’s better to be a face on a screen than a name in a blank square. Your statements will be more memorable when other meeting attendees can see you.

If you need to turn off the video, either because of a poor connection, some commotion in the room, or a need for a quick break, give a short explanation via the chat feature. Then, go back on video as soon as you’re able.

Pro Tip: Keep your explanation for your departure pithy. “Sorry! Doorbell rang. Back in five” says it all. Be sure to honor what you say in chat and really do return in five minutes.

7. Plan Ahead Before Sharing Your Screen

Don’t be one of those people who makes everyone else wait as you click through folders in search of a document. That’s just poor video conferencing etiquette. If you know you’ll need to share a document or video on your screen, prepare by pulling it out of its folder and onto your desktop. Also, clean up the files and folders on your desktop to reduce clutter and facilitate easy access. Close other programs like chat, calendar notifications, and email. Disable pop-up notifications to ensure there’ll be no unforeseen distractions.

Be sure to remind the host before the meeting that you’ll need them to activate the screen-sharing function. Show courtesy once you’re finished by hitting “stop share” to return to the screen with participants.

Attend to the Pesky Details

8. Make Sure That Meetings Remain Right-Sized

With the easy accessibility of video conferencing, it can be tempting to extend the meeting invitation beyond the core group and include everyone peripherally involved in a project. But just as with in-person meetings, the more people involved, the more unwieldy the meeting becomes.

Use good judgment when asking others to sit through a video conference so that you don’t needlessly take up others’ time and so that participants can be fully engaged.

9. Remember to “Unmute” Before You Speak

Most of us are likely able to count on one hand the number of video conferences when someone didn’t have to be reminded, “You’re on mute!” Forgetting to unmute before speaking has become one of the most common missteps in video conferencing.[1]

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Show everyone your impeccable video-conferencing poise by managing your mute feature with flawless control.

10. Stay on Point to Keep the Meeting Length in Check

As with in-person meetings, an agenda with assigned time limits for discussions remains necessary to keep a meeting focused. Data shows, however, that video conferencing can actually reduce meeting time.[2] Reasons include the elimination of commuting time and the ability to screen share and annotate to keep everyone on task.

Additionally, side conversations are virtually impossible with video conferencing now that you can no longer have back-and-forth exchanges with the person beside you.

Pro Tip: If you’re running the meeting, let attendees know in advance the protocol for the chat feature. Is it okay for them to “chat among themselves” or not? (See point 11, as well.)

Talking Has a Time and a Place

11. Chat Appropriately

Just like side conversations or texting in an in-person meeting, the use of the chat feature during a video conference can be disrespectful unless it’s directed to all participants. Hence, it’s good video conferencing etiquette to mind your use of the chat.

At the start of the meeting, you may want to ask the host if it’s alright for participants to use the chat feature. This allows them to disable it if they choose. Used appropriately, it can be a helpful tool to clarify or amplify an earlier point once the conversation has moved on or to let the group know that you need to sign off early (and why).

12. Use the “Raise Hand” Feature to Avoid Interruptions

The slight lag in many video conferences can result in speaking over another person if you attempt to jump into a conversation. To avoid this awkward interruption, indicate when you have something to add to the discussion with the raise-your-hand feature that signals the host you would like to speak. This effective meeting management device makes video conferencing run more smoothly, especially with a large group, but it must be activated and monitored by the host.

Pro Tip: For meetings of six to ten people, sometimes the old-fashioned raising of your physical hand may be the best option. But it’s up to the meeting host. Ask them what they would prefer, and follow that.

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13. Don’t Record the Session or Take Photos Without Prior Permission

In this case, not sharing is caring. The “sharing culture” made popular through social media has little place in video conferencing. Before recording a meeting or capturing a screenshot of the participants, always ask for consent in advance from the full roster of attendees. Knowing that a video conference will be photographed or recorded could have a bearing on what others are willing to discuss.

Manage Yourself

14. Minimize Distractions

While de-activating audio and video features can keep distractions from affecting the other participants, you will need to manage noise and disruptions on your end to give your full attention to the meeting.

Move out of high-traffic zones in your home, keep your door closed, and ask family members to be considerate.

15. Save Snacking for Later

Save snacking for later—or earlier. Eating while on video conference is a no-no. Munching in front of the group while close to the camera—as you are when video conferencing—subjects the participants to an up-close and (too) personal view of your food consumption process.

However, it’s perfectly fine to sip quietly from a glass of water or cup of coffee or tea. If the meeting threatens to last for more than two hours, you may want to ask the host in advance to schedule a five-minute break at the halfway point.

Final Thoughts

Even though bosses are now beginning to ask workers to spend some of their workdays on-site, up to 80 percent will permit employees to work remotely at least part of the time, which means more video conferencing in your future.[3] Mastering these video conferencing etiquette tips will help you dial in—as well as dial back—your participation and demonstrate your unwavering level of engagement to the team.

Featured photo credit: Chris Montgomery via unsplash.com

Reference

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