Running Your Business From Home
How To Run Your Business From Home - 10 Things To Consider
Running a home-based business is more prevalent than ever thanks to huge advances in technology. With cell phones, wireless Internet, programs like Skype and WebX, you can virtually be anywhere, anytime. All of this accessibility brings with it a whole new set of challenges that a home business owner may not be prepared for. Working from home takes a lot of discipline and personal accountability. Here are 10 things to consider when setting up your home business.
1. First, are you able to manage yourself? Entrepreneurs are creative, typically high-energy people. Are you able to hunker down and focus on what needs to get accomplished on a day-to-day basis? Be honest with yourself and assess if you can hold yourself accountable. If the answer is no, don’t worry! There are plenty of ways to be a business owner that offer a certain amount of structure that will keep your pretty booty in line. Buying a franchise or having a turnkey business might be better options for you.
2. Create a dedicated workspace. You will need a space that is dedicated to work. Once your workday is over, leave that space and rejoin your household life.
3. Set a schedule AND stick to it. Set a 9am to 5pm workday for yourself. Or a 6am to 2pm or a 4am to 10am, whatever schedule works best for you, set it up and then adhere to it. It doesn’t take much to say to yourself, ”I’ll write that press release after I throw in a load of laundry” or “I’ll make a couple phone calls after I go to the gym.” You can really find a lot of ways to fill up your time with errands instead of work. Resolve to get things done after your set work hours.
4. Set rules in the house. If the door to your office is shut, that means no disturbing from anyone in the house. Set a couple office hours, where under no circumstances should you be disturbed unless there is an emergency. If you use your home phone as your business line, consider making a rule that between working hours, you are the only one that answers it.
5. Create a Power Hour for yourself. Turn off Facebook, Twitter, email notifications, text messages, etc. Take an hour to really think and focus on getting one or two projects started or finished up. The constant pop-ups and vibrations of notifications can be very distracting. It’s only an hour, you can handle it!
6. Get dressed! You don’t have to get dressed up, but at least get out of your pajamas. Some people think that working in your pajamas is a dream, but your brain may not make the switch. It will make a difference.
7. Try and be as mobile as possible. Get a laptop and smart phone with sync-able calendars to keep you organized. That way if you need to just get out of the house, you can pick up and go. If you find you simply can’t concentrate at home, you can work from a coffee shop, co-working space or local library for a change of scenery.
8. Are you lonely? People often forget the social satisfaction that comes with an office environment. Working for yourself and being home may be the best thing that’s ever happened to you, but at some point, you might miss the social interactions you would have had with co-workers. Alleviate this by attending happy hours, meetup groups or even working a couple days a week at a co-working space. There are many places that offer workstations for rent for freelance or WFH business owners, we love Co-Merge Workspace in downtown San Diego.
9. Charge by the project. If your client knows you work from your home office, consider charging for your output or by project instead of hourly. It will provide some added value over your office worker competition.
10. Punch out at the end of the day. When your workday is over, try with all of your might not to answer “just one more email” or “finish up that proposal.” Devote your time to your family or yourself. This is kind of like telling a fish not to swim, but finding balance is the key here.