Not only does the recession make it easier to find discounts on the capital needed to start a new business, but ithas also brought the old-fashioned practice of bartering back into style. Trading services is a great way to take advantage of the bad economy, says Kimberly Seals-Allers, author of The Mocha Manual to Turning Your Passion Into Profit and creator of MochaManual.com, especially if you're starting a new business and need help with website design or accounting, for example. "You'll have a large number of highly qualified individuals [offering their services] who you couldn't have afforded before. It's an opportunity to find talent and negotiate things," she says.
To find a willing partner, visit sites such as JoeBarter.com and Craigslist.com. You can post what you're looking for and what you have to offer and then wait for responses.
[For more, read, Creative Ways to Combine Work and Family.]
It's easier to find partners. Fougerousse inspired her younger brother and his wife, Tim Bradley and Anne Morrison Bradley of Ferndale, Mich., to start The Premium Pet, an online pet décor store that launches in August. As they form relationships with vendors, whose products they will sell through their website, they've found that the recession has made vendors more willing to give them a chance. "When things are going well, they're more selective, so for us, it's an advantage right now because we can get more products right off the bat," says Tim Bradley.
It's gratifying. This one is just as true during boom times as during a recession, but becoming self-employed provides a sense of satisfaction that's hard to come by when working for someone else. "The whole construct of going into an office and working 9 to 5 felt too rigid," says Goodman. "I got bored with the monotony of projects."
Skillings says that even though she's working harder than she did in the corporate world, she finds more value and satisfaction in what she does. She says, "In my corporate job, it didn't feel meaningful. It wasn't something that resonated with me."