Depending on the size and purpose of a business, the thought of running it out of your own home is appealing to some entrepreneurs. There are some obvious advantages of operating a small home-based business : it is a good starting base, has lower financial risk, no commuting, less overhead costs, tax advantages, easy to customize your work space, use of existing resources (phone lines, internet, utilities), taking breaks and lunch hour in your own home, etc. On the other hand, the disadvantages are: work life is encroaching on home life, isolation, procrastination and lack of space as your business expands. Therefore you must weigh your options carefully!
Customizing Your Home Office To Work At Home
There are rules for organizing your home office so you have a better chance to work productively.
• Set up a separate home office – If you’re going to work at home, you need a home office. A separate work space helps you separate your work life from your home life. Set up a room as a home office, but if you can’t, make sure you have at least a desk where you can keep your home based business material organized so it stays undisturbed when you’re not working.
• Entering your home office mentally prepares you to go to work, and establishes a distance no matter how small the distance between ‘work’ and ‘home’. A demarcated home office serves as a signal to other family members that “you’re working” and do not want to be disturbed.
• Make your home office a work space – Piles of disorganized faxes, bills, and memos are definitely confusing when you’re trying to work at home. You need to be able to sit down without having to clear a space or hunt for a particular piece of paper. Getting your home office organized and keeping it that way prevents distractions and time-wasting. In next week article, see part two “Office functionality and Design” .
• Minimize distractions – You need to be able to concentrate to work at home. This will be impossible if other family members are wandering in and out of your home office asking you questions or if the phone is ringing constantly. Tell your family members what your work schedule is and ask them to respect it by not interrupting you unless absolutely necessary. If you have small children, have someone else watch them while you work. If it is impossible consider hiring a baby sitter; it can be expensive but necessary. You can’t do the job you need to do if you’re doing something else. Get an answering machine if the telephone is an intrusion rather than a sales tool.
If you have any other questions you would like answered, please call Marie Morrell at 613-936-6873 or email: [email protected]