Image: Mabel Forsyth/CanStockPhoto
Are you interested in running a business from home?
Technology has made it easy to work from home or from any space which is great if want to save on transport costs, commute time or be around to pick up the kids.
Whilst they are some of the positives to working from home, there are negatives too. Researchers found small business owners are prone to getting easily distracted and to feel lonely and isolated at times.
However you can run a home-based business successfully and here are my five top tips to help you do it.
1. Set up a comfortable work environment – Create a space with a comfortable chair and desk. This will also help you get in the work mood. I say that because whilst it may be comfortable to stay in your pjs, it’s hard to stay professional and focused.
2. Procrastination – My Dad told me what his mother told him, “Don’t put off tomorrow what you can do today.” When working from home it’s easy to start watering the pot plants or put the washing on to avoid sending an email or talking to your accountant (yep I know from personal experience). Don’t waste your day by falling into this trap. Set your intention for completing at least three tasks per day.
3. Kids and dogs can be real distractions – Try and structure your working day to attend to their needs and the needs of your business. After I’ve taken my son to school and walked Buddy I have a window of uninterrupted peace from 9.30am to 3.30pm. I check over my emails, then Facebook 10 mins, Skype clients, lunch 30 mins and before I know it it’s 3pm. Then from 3.30pm till 7.30pm I’m on mum duty for my boys. Also experiment with your own biorhythms. I’ve noticed that after 8pm I have brain fatigue so I’m better off scheduling Facebook posts rather than trying to write blogs or long emails.
4. Don’t be an island – Do you miss the Christmas parties and socials? I do! To avoid feeling isolated catch up with colleagues, friends or clients at least twice a week. Why not join some Meetup groups, go to networking events or schedule appointments away from your home office. You can network online too through a number of business closed Facebook groups.
5. Have a lunch break – It’s important to take a break for lunch and to eat away from technology. There’s nothing worse than laksa on the laptop. When taking your lunch break see if you can go out in the fresh air. Take a walk around the block, clear your head, and to have a real break just don’t answer the phone until you’re back.
Working from home has definitely given me a better work-life balance, but it’s my balance and you will need to experiment with creating one that works for you.
Like some help?
I’d be delighted to bounce a couple of ideas off with you and you can reach me on 0405 433 217 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fiona Craig is a work-life balance coach, business mentor, writer, speaker and buy mum who loves helping women become better at juggling career and family life or to create a better work-life balance by starting a business. Email Fiona at email@example.com or call 0405 433 217 for a FREE 20 minute, Rapid Results Coaching Session.