The Business Model of the Future

As the world continues to change and the economy hobbles along, more and more people are seeking the answer to that basic fundamental question of  “how am I going to make a living?”  The availability of traditional employment keeps shrinking; so many individuals are looking to take control of their financial security by starting their own home based business.  This phenomenon is being referred to in the media as the home based business movement.  Although there are many different kinds of businesses a person can operate from home, the models of home based businesses that I will be referring to for the purpose of this article will fall under the direct sales model (Avon, Pampered Chef, Mary Kay), network marketing model (Amway, Send Out Cards, Prepaid Legal, Forevergreen) and affiliate marketing models (Amazon, Clickbank, Linkshare).

Why start a home based business?

  1. The need for multiple sources of income. Why do you think it's a good idea to create multiple sources of income?
  2.  Compared to what it would take to start a traditional brick and mortar business, a home based  business requires low start-up and ongoing costs.
  3.  Tax Advantages- There are multiple tax advantages to operating a business from home.
  4.  Potential to create non-linear/passive/residual income?
  5. Unlimited income potential- As an employee your boss decides how much you are worth. When you operate your own business you decide what you are worth. You will get back what you put into it.
  6. Personal Freedom- The freedom to run your own business how, when and where you want. 
  7. It is the trend of the future. I heard it once said, “times of great change are the best of times for those with the vision to benefit from new economic arrangements, and the worst of times for those who cling to old crumbling institutions.” Right now home based businesses are said to account for over 50% of Japan’s gross domestic product and it continues to grow in the United States.

What do you look for in a company?

Find a company that provides products or services that you believe in and can get passionate about.  Look for a company whose vision and mission is in line with your personal morals, values and ethics.

Ideally, you want your company to provide a product or service that is unique, consumable and has mass market appeal.  Look for a company that is stable and has strong financial backing.  Start-ups are great because of all the buzz and excitement they generate, but the facts are, most start-up companies fail within the first two years. So, find a company that has been in operation for five years or more, and  it is likely you have found one that knows what they are doing. 

It is also a good idea to make sure that they are listed with or monitored my some type of independent entity that ensures they meet certain industry standards like the Direct Sellers Association (DSA). You can also check with the Better Business Bureau in their location to determine if they have ever had complaints and the outcomes of any complaints they may have had.

Your potential company should have proven leadership. Their leadership team should have plenty of experience and knowledge about the home based business industry. They should effectively communicate with the field the company’s mission and vision. They should possess the ability to recognize business and product trends and adapt or make changes which will enhance the efforts of their consultants or distributors in the field.

If you are able,  find a company that is a publicly traded.  A publicly traded company's  financial books are open to anyone and you can observe on the technical stock markets if their growth is continuous or declining.  A public company cannot hide anything where as some private companies are able to and might create fictitious financial documents that can lead the prospect to believe their company is growing when it may in fact be in decline.

Determine if their compensation plan fair?  That is, will you be adequately rewarded for your efforts? Are there multiple ways to generate an income?  Retailing, bonuses, leadership pools, and overrides are some examples of ways you can receive compensation.

Look for a company with an excellent training and mentoring program that will provide you with the tools you need to be successful.  Training can come in the form of teleconferences, conventions, webinars, manuals, DVD’s and CD’s, books and team training.

Behaviors that increase the likelihood of your success:

  • I am sure you have heard this before but you need to treat your home based business like a business not a hobby. If you treat it like a business then you will produce business like results, but if you treat it like a hobby, you will produce hobby like results. Someone once told me “treat it like you have invested $100,000 in it"  because if you treat it like you invested $100 - $200 then your actions and outcomes will follow accordingly. 


  • Jim Rohn once said, “formal education will earn you a living, but self-education will earn you a fortune. Invest in yourself.  Continue to be a student.   Increase your value to others by developing your skills and abilities.   The business of the future is YOU INC. What do you have to offer? What can you contribute?  What skills do you possess?  The more value you bring to the market place, the more you are sought after for what you have to offer.


  • Realize that this isn’t necessarily about selling.   You are in the information dispensation business. You get paid to teach people that a product or service exists.  You get paid to teach people about how a product or service will benefit them and their family.  You get paid to teach people how they can start their own business and help them help others do the same. You are in the teaching business.  You simply look for people who want what you have to offer.  Then you educate them about what it is that you have or what it is that you do.


  • You must be willing to take some risk.   If you have a very low tolerance for risk, then don’t start your own business.  There is some level of risk involved with starting a home based business, but that is the case with almost everything we do. We only get one shot at this life and none of us are getting out of here alive, so why be content to just let life happen?  Do you want to live your life by default or design?  Ships are safe in the harbor but that isn’t what ships are built for.   So, if you are feeling like a captain, set your sails and head out to sea.