As part of a bootstrapping exercise or a business start-up phase, working from home is a great way to work, so I thought of some points to consider when setting up your office, small business or personal business, like contractors, freelancer, self-employed, sole-trader and virtual assistants at home:
- Cost – you will save a lot of money and be very eco-friendly when you decide not to rent an office, this saving can be used in other areas of your business, like marketing, better web-site or better IT.
- Family – I suspect that many of you work from home because of your family, it allows you to be around when your kids come home from school or look after relatives, while still earning a living.
- Commuting – again a very eco-friendly approach and saves money and time. This time can be spend on real business activities. It certainly will enhance your work/life balance and make your small business or start-up more cost efficient form day one.
- Freedom – this may especially appeal to you if you like to work at odd hours, it will suit your lifestyle. Dress as you like it, so you will be more comfortable.
- Healthy – if you work in an office and one of you gets ill, soon all the others are down too – not if you work from home.
- Teamwork – chances are you need to work with other people, use online technology to collaborate with your colleagues and other team workers – they too may work from home.
- Domestic Life – you’ll be around when the plumber finally turns up or other trades people. You can enjoy your local life more – by having a social network in your village rather than at work – this could be the return of the local community.
- Small Business Infrastructure – use online technology to keep your data and work safe at all times without that you have to do anything, build your own virtual Small Business Team to timeshare professionals like yourself. Outsource to make your business more professional and scalable.
- Meetings – even bigger businesses use coffee shops to meet – they often have WiFi – so can you. Make sure you plan them well, so you can be efficient with your time.
- Eco-Friendly – you will only heat your home, no other workplace needs to be heated or air-conditioned, your energy efficiency goes up, no travel to work – so you reduce your carbon footprint enormously just by working from home.
You will need some pretty good reasons to go to an office and work. Especially for small business and start-up business, like SOHO-, SME, SMB-, Micro-, Lifestyle-, Home-, DIY-, Hobby-, Boomer-, Professional-, Personal business, you need to ask yourself if you can afford to miss out on all the above opportunities for your work and for your life?
I work from home over 90% of the time and only go to the office for meetings and I love every minute of this. I use social network communities like linkedIn to build my professional network, utilizing our online office, skype and other tools to communicate and work worldwide.
More and more of my friends work from home so we have nice “pub-lunches” locally, no traveling, less stress and a much better work/life balance – how is your work/life balance?
For more of my checklists see the Small Business Checklists category and as always please add to my list with your comments, tell us what works for you.