Do you love taking care of your own children, but need to earn more money? Become your own boss by also providing child care services for other people's children. Likewise, if you're passionate about creating beautiful furniture or other household items with wood, that could be a small business niche for you. Start by publishing some of your pieces on sites like Etsy. Once you get followers, consider creating a website, accepting custom orders, or expanding into finishing and upholstery work.
People often establish contacts at business events, clubs and meetings. Volunteering with a professional organization or serving on a community board can also be helpful. And networking doesn't have to be formal. Sometimes I just have coffee with people and share ideas without worrying about business, says Ryan Schwartz, an independent communications specialist in Portland, Oregon.