No, working from home isn’t for everyone. You must be disciplined, motivated, and a self-starter. Regardless of what the required personality traits are to work from home successfully, the number of people deciding to leave corporate America is rising rapidly.
No bosses breathing down your neck, no meetings to attend and no long commutes to deal with….sounds pretty good to me. Working from home can be a rewarding experience, but it’s easy to lose your way when it’s just you, your computer and the distractions of home.
Here are some helpful tips for keeping your home-based business running smoothly.
This means taking a shower, getting dressed and having breakfast. Setting some professional standards for yourself will ensure that you start each day in a productive mindset.
One of the biggest problems most home-based business owners have is they no longer have a boss standing over them making sure they are getting their work done. It’s easy to let time slip by as you head to the refrigerator, watch a few minutes of TV, or try to finish a project around the house. Structure your day so you have a start and finish time, with certain hours set aside for specific activities. For example, spending the first couple hours of the day prospecting for new clients—Sending emails, letters and making phone calls. Use some sort of contact management software to serve as a visual reminder of what you need to accomplish that day.
It’s important that you create a dedicated work station that is comfortable, private and away from distractions. This space is yours, so make it yours! You’re going to be spending a lot of your time there. You should have all your work tools, like your computer, laptop, scanner, phone and printer, all in one place. Setting up your home office also means setting up boundaries with the people (that means pets too) you share your home with. Set up rules so that everyone understands when you are available and when you are not.
We all have tasks that we don’t like doing. It really doesn’t matter if we’re working for ourselves or someone else. So, let’s say you’re a morning person, then start working on the most difficult and unpleasant tasks first. Then in the afternoon, do the things you enjoy, such as creative tasks.
End your day
This can be hard to do. It’s easy to keep working long after the hours you’ve set for yourself have passed. After all, your office is as easily accessible. Your business will suffer if all you do is focus obsessively on it. Not only is it important to know when to end your day but remember to take short breaks (time scheduled) throughout the day too. You’ll find you get a lot more done if you can stick to these rules.
Tracy Sage-JCL Realty