Increasing workloads are forcing people to spend more time in the office, even when the office is at home. This means that many parents are unable to stay involved in their children’s lives as they develop, and are becoming
mere spectators instead of loving role models. The result is an undermining of their relationships, higher stress levels, a lack of balance and a generally unfulfilled life.
However, this should not be the case. Working at home allows greater freedom and independence and should result in less time being wasted. Yet many of us fail to successfully make this transition. Discipline is a key factor when running a business from home using a virtual office.
Here ways you can successfully work from home and enjoy the benefits using a Virtual Office…
Establish a routine – Structure your day so that it is both purposeful and productive. Decide on a starting and finishing time for your day; allow for breaks so that you work smarter, not harder. Doing this will also allow you
to better differentiate between work and home, and will encourage you to be more professional.
Focus on your strengths, outsource your weaknesses – Spend the maximum amount of time working on the parts of your business that you are best at. If your billable time is worth $200 an hour, then make sure you spend most of your time on the activities that will produce that for you.
Investing in a virtual office is key (see Virtual Offices. Avoid filling up your day with non-productive activities. Invest your time and money into the right areas of your business; don’t just keep yourself busy.
Organise your environment – Have the right tools and systems to work with – an appropriate chair, desk, computer, filing system. In addition, using a Virtual Office, meeting clients in an executive boardroom in a sky rise office building, will show your professionalism and will inspire confidence in you.
Declutter the clutter – A messy working environment which forces you to be continuously spending valuable time searching for things, whether files and emails on the computer or documents in filing cabinets and cupboards,
cumulatively wastes hours a day. In fact The Wall Street Journal found that the average white collar worker spends 6 weeks a year looking for things around the office! Clutter is distracting and causes stress, and it is the primary enemy of productivity.
Learn to say ‘no’ – Inform your family and friends of your working hours and that because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you’re ‘available’. If you were in a corporate office, you would not allow your friends to drop by. Enforce these same rules at your office at home.
Network to expand your business and your mind – Join local networking groups to meet other like-minded business people. Share knowledge and discover new
ways of doing things. Check out your local council and chamber of commerce. Enquire about active small business networks. Join your own trade association
and share ideas. An organised business referral group can also be of enormous benefit to the home based business owner.
Take time out for you – It can be easy to lose yourself in your work. Take time to ‘smell the roses’ and to make human contact. Go for a walk every day. Have a weekly or fortnightly massage. Visit the gym more often.
It’s generally the simple ideas when acted upon consistently that will make a dramatic impact overall in your business and your life. You’ll feel happier
and more fulfilled. You’ll also discover extra time in the day that you never had before.