There are a number of benefits from having a home-based office. It increases efficiency and productivity along with providing an environment for which to spend more time with family.
So, what’s the downside? Having a home office creates the problem of distinguishing between work and home life. It is absolutely vital for your business and family life to be separate from the other.
Here are ten ways you can avoid overworking and never leaving the office.
1. Office space. Create a physical separation of your office from the rest of your house. Don’t put your office in a leisure room, lounge area or kitchen because they can easily distract, not from your work but from your life. A helpful tip would be to put your office in a space that has a separate entrance such as a garage, attic or walkout-basement.
2. Be disciplined. Make a mental note that going to the office means “going to the office”. Dress as if you are going to work, after all, you are.
3. Acknowledgement. Make it clear to your family that the office is for work and ask that they respect the work boundaries.
4. Office hours. One of the simplest ways to avoid overworking is to set office hours and try to complete your work during that time.
5. Comfort zone. Create a space that has a high level of comfort. Get a good desk and chair that will increase your focus on your work and not your back. Don’t forget good lighting.
6. No busy signals. It is important to have a separate phone line for your office. It is also crucial to have a dedicated fax line. This makes it easier for you and your clients. Note: If your budget does not allow for another line, consider online fax options such as eFax.
7. Hardware. Buy a good computer, printer, and fax machine.
8. Meeting place. Avoid meeting new and important clients at your home office. Setup meetings at neutral locations like coffee houses or rent a professional location.
9. Networking. Get out of the office on a regular basis to meet with potential or current clients.
10. Storage space. Regardless of your “paperless” business, plan for storage space for the paperwork you will accumulate during the work process. Utilize an efficient filing system for your financial records and contracts. Note: Keep it simple.