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Tip of the Month: Working from Home

By Mary-Kate Handforth | September 1, 2010

It sounds like the holy grail of employment options. Whether you’re working from home one or two days a week or self-employed with a home based business, working from the house sounds appealing for most people. Think about it. There’s no commute, you’ll save time and gas money, you don’t need to get dressed up, you can get the laundry done – what’s not to love?

Check out a few tips about working from home to help you decide if it works for you, and make the most of it.

Set some office hours. Just like you show up for work at the same time every day and leave at the same time every day, plan to do this when you work from home. Of course one of the bonuses of working from home is that these office hours are more flexible, but if you don’t plan to work, it won’t get done.

Likewise if you don’t plan an end time, you may keep working until you have everything done. The catch for most entrepreneurs is that the to-do list will keep on growing. Making time for family, friends and creative pursuits is important for yourself, which makes it important for your business too.

Leave your personal life in the living room and your work life in the office space. Keeping your work life and personal life separate is tricky when you work from home. Setting some physical boundaries for different activities can help.

Think about communication. How will you communicate for your business?  Email, telephone and online communication like Skype can make it possible for you to work nearly anywhere, but there is no substitute for face to face communication. Make a point to get out of your house and talk to people for work whenever you can. This will help you avoid pouncing on your significant other when they come home from work in an effort to connect with a live human being. Trust me – they’ll appreciate it if you take a walk over to the coffee shop and chat up the barista sometime before the end of the work day!

Setting up a strategy to manage your tasks, time, and communication will help you with a smooth transition into working from home, along with boosting your productivity. Like anything in business, plan for success!

Have you got any tips for working from home? We’d love to hear them!

Topics: Small Business Tips and Advice, Tip of the Month | No Comments »

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