More and more people are working from home instead of the office. Indeed, more and more workers are even opting out of the corporate life altogether by choosing to go into business for themselves, quite often setting up shop in their own homes. While many are excited by a more relaxed environment, some people often have trouble staying productive and find it difficult to maintain a friendly working atmosphere.
So, how is it done? Plus, what if you have to meet up with your customers or clients to talk? Whether it’s for your benefit or someone else’s, it pays to consider how to establish a good working environment in your home.
Firstly, you need to consider your workspace. Whether it’s a dedicated room within your home, a small corner of another room or an additional building located in the backyard, you need to ensure this is right for you and your business.
Your desk is your own personal space so make sure its a professional working area. This will help you to be more productive and should include a sturdy chair, a clear work surface and professional equipment that you may need such as a computer, laptop and printer. Anything you’d have in a work office, you should have in your home office – and that includes good lighting too.
Get the heating right – no-one wants to be too hot or too cold – and consider if you need a coffee machine or water cooler if you’re planning to meet clients or customers here.
A lot of offices tend to stick to a certain colour palette, which might not be the friendliest or welcoming. Have a think about colours and shades that can reduce your stress levels when you’re trying to be productive and that are welcoming to potential visitors. You might find that posters or photos lighten the mood too. This is your space, so if photos of your family can lift your mood and cheer you up when you’re under pressure, then by all means put them up.
Make sure you keep distractions to a minimum though. Working from home cannot mean sitting on the sofa in front of the TV with your laptop all day. We advise you have a computer set up in your office so you won’t be tempted to go elsewhere to do work. If necessary, minimize distractions on your computer too by installing a blocker that limits access to certain sites, such as Facebook or gaming apps. The more you can limit these distractions the more productive you’ll be.
Working from home can give you the best of both worlds – but you do need to be able to switch on the right mind-set when it matters. That’s why a work-friendly atmosphere is important. Friendly in that it helps you to be productive and also friendly in that it helps to cut the stress and enjoy being free of the commute, desk and office politics that you’ve left behind. Follow the simple steps above to ensure your working from home experiment is a success and that you never look back.