Successful side gig or new business? Check. Plan for growth? Check. Suitable home office space? Hmm. Not all entrepreneurs or small business owners think about their home office, especially when they’re just starting out.
Home Sweet Home Business
Having enough space at home for both your work and personal life is essential for meeting your business goals. After all, 59 percent of entrepreneurs work from home, even after their business becomes lucrative, says Inc. So, how can you make the most of your home office space? Follow these three steps.
1. Separate Home and Office
Establishing separate living and working spaces is the first step toward designing the perfect home office. Work-life balance is complicated enough for those who work outside the home—you will need to compartmentalize the two sides even further as a remote professional.
After all, a quiet workspace is vital for getting things done, and it’s not always feasible to soundproof the entire room (and door). Plus, adding another room or converting a garage can cost you. Either way, the first step in designing your space is ensuring you have enough square footage for living and working—plus storage as necessary.
For many up-and-coming business owners, this might mean moving. With that in mind, take a look at home prices in your area to see what’s workable for your growing business. For example, properties in Manhattan sold for an average price of $985K last month, which is down almost 32 percent from last year. You might find the ideal property—with enough space for the family and an office—within your budget.
2. Go with What Feels Good
If you don’t love your office space, you won’t want to work there, period. So, while it makes sense to avoid clutter and establish some organization, you should listen to your gut on everything else.
That means choosing a wall color that’s soothing and inviting. It also means selecting furniture that’s comfortable and addresses ergonomic risk factors to help avoid injury and strain. Elements like adequate lighting—plus natural light whenever possible—are no-brainers since they help you focus and feel energized.
Of course, listening to your gut can also involve taking prolonged breaks from work. Studies indicate that people who work remotely are more productive, Forbes notes, even while taking longer breaks. Of course, getting adequate downtime is another crucial part of maintaining balance, and it’s something we wholeheartedly endorse.
3. Have an Eye Toward Productivity
Designing the perfect home office isn’t beneficial if you don’t use it properly. And for most people, that means spending less time at their desk while maximizing their efficiency. There’s no point in sitting in your office chair while you eat lunch or scanning social media when you have piles of work to address.
Experts at Business Insider recommend a handful of productivity strategies like setting a daily schedule and avoiding personal projects and housework while on the clock. They also suggest getting dressed as if you’re going into a business office. The right attire can help you get in the right mindset for efficient and high-quality work. Focusing on keeping business business-like helps many entrepreneurs and small business owners to take their jobs seriously, which is paramount for growth.
Knowing what time you are most productive is another smart step. By starting work when you’re perky—whether that’s 5 am or around noon—you’ll get an edge on your responsibilities. For most people, the peak for logical abilities lies between 8 am and 2 pm, per Psychology Today, which means standard bankers’ hours may be ideal.
Whenever you work, treating yourself like an office worker may also help. The ‘worker’ mindset is especially helpful if it means getting out of your chair and grabbing a cup of coffee or going for a walk.
Designing the perfect home office space can be a lot more complicated than moving a desk into the corner. You need to have the right mindset, equipment, and strategies to make your home workspace inviting and productive. Then, you’ll be poised for maximum profit and maximum growth.
Written by Tina Martins
Tina Martin started her career in business administration but eventually decided to pursue something that actually inspired her: becoming a personal fitness instructor. She is working on her first book, Ideaspired: Put Your Ideas, Your Inspiration, and Yourself First to Make Your Dreams Come True. She also started ideaspired.com as a side project to reach as many people as possible, and encourage them to put their dreams first.