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Simara James is a mother of two, mindfulness coach and consultant, author, podcast host and flexible work expert looking to improve the lives of women across the globe by sharing tips to creating more balance and design a live that's full of fulfillment. 

Signs of a Work From Home Scam

The most frustrating part of looking for opportunities to work from home are all of those looking to make a quick buck at your expense online. Anyone who has made any attempt at searching for work from home jobs online has run into those too good to be true ads that pop up in your search results. In order to find the opportunity that works for you, you have to become a savvy job seeker and use keen observation...and a lot of common keep from wasting too much time exploring opportunities that lead to nowhere at best, and loss of time, money and morale at worst.

1. The ad promises a high income with little to no experience.

As mush as we'd all love to win the lottery and get something for next to nothing, when it comes to employment, we've always got to exchange value for value. If someone is claiming to offer you big money with no experience, chances are they are baiting you into some serious grunt work that won't show a return...maybe something "commissions" based...or they're trying to sell you a training program.

2. The job description is vague.

If after reading the job description, you still have no idea what you'd be doing, don't waste your time reaching out to the job poster. When an employer is looking for talent, they aren't trying to waste time. They will be very clear and precise on what they are looking for.

3. You're only asked for your contact information and not your resume and credentials.

If someone reaches out to you and is only asking for your personal information rather than your credentials, beware. They're out to gain something from you and not create a mutually beneficial relationship. Employers will always quickly want to weed out candidates who are not a good fit for positions and will therefore want to gather as much information about your skills as possible.

4. You're asked to pay for training in order to do the job.

If you make it to the "interview" stage and you "get the job", walk out immediately if you're asked to pay for some sort of training to do the job. It's one thing if you were originally seeking to build your skill set and sought out reputable training, but if you were clearly seeking employment and the "employer" isn't providing paid training (meaning they pay you and not the other way around), you're probably dealing with a company looking to sell programs and not hire. Be wary even if the training is free. Sometimes these organizations will get you to invest time in their free training knowing that it will be hard for you to say no to the training they will sell you in the future since you've made a mini commitment to the process. If you're not earning money the moment you set up an agreement, it's not a job.

5. You feel like you're being sold on something.

If every conversation is full of flattery and you can do no wrong, you're probably being sold, not interviewed. If someone is claiming to be a friend or telling you after five minutes of conversation that you're the perfect person for a job or "opportunity", they are likely the only ones who will benefit from your time and money investment. If you see that a person is constantly reaching out to you regarding something that they insist will benefit you, the truth is probably that they are trying to convince you to do something that will solely benefit them. This is a key tactic of network marketing organizations. They profit only when they can convince others to join. When they reach out to you, what they don't tell you up front is that the only way you can profit is to turn around and recruit another person. That's not a's a multi level marketing scheme that will leave you at the bottom of the pyramid short of money, time and all the friends you try and sign up if you let it.

6. The contact email looks like a personal one.

Please ignore any job postings or emails from "recruiters" that have an @gmail, @yahoo, or some other personal sounding email address. Issa scam. Delete and move on.

7. You're being asked for the contact information of people you know.

If anyone reaches out to you presenting an opportunity and follows it up with, "please pass this on to anyone you know", it may not be a scam, but it's definitely not an opportunity you want to pursue if you're looking to build a career. When a legitimate employer is looking to fill a position, they don't use blasted out emails to do it. The closest thing you'll see to that from a legitimate employer is when they ask current employees to recommend QUALIFIED people they know personally and offer some sort of bonus IF the referred person is hired. So if you are receiving a pass it on message that is legit, it will come from someone you know personally, NOT some strange company or "recruiter".

Please use your thinking caps as you search to find your perfect flexible and remote opportunities. If you already have a job you love (or at least like) and you want to convert it to a work at home position. Check out my how to manual here.

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