Long gone are the days when you needed physical offices and obscene amounts of capital to start a business.
With the advent of the internet and the rapid advancement in technology to accompany it, you can start a business and successfully operate it from the comfort of your home.
If you are a home business owner then, first of all, congratulations on taking your first step toward financial freedom. It feels great to work for yourself, right?
With the concept of online and home businesses being relatively new, there is a lot that we need to learn if we want to truly succeed. COVID-19 has been a great catalyst for the rise of the work-from-home culture.
It has been a welcome change for most, but it can feel a little overwhelming. In this article, we are going to discuss some productivity hacks and best practices that will help you take your home business to the next level. Let’s get into it.
Pros and Cons
Nothing in this world is perfect. There are upsides and downsides to everything. While working from home is a huge improvement over office jobs there are still some aspects of it that we need to tackle with caution.
Let’s take a look at some pros and cons of working from home before we dive deeper into the productivity hacks for home businesses.
- Flexibility – I think we can all agree that the biggest advantage of having an online business is the hours. You can set your own work schedule.
- Travel time – When you have a home business, you do not have to worry about the rush hour. It is indeed a blessing not to have to commute to and from an office every day. It saves a ton of time which can be utilized for more important things.
- Office Culture – Another huge advantage of working from home is that you don’t have to deal with office culture. This includes office politics and having oversight from your manager. When you work for yourself, you don’t have to answer to anyone else but yourself.
- Working Alone – It can get a little boring when you do not have physical interaction with other people and feel like you are holed up in your house working alone.
- Different Time zones – If you have an online business and have to deal with people from all over the world then it can become a little frustrating having to manage your schedule according to their time zones.
- Lack of work and personal space – When your home is your office and your office is your home it can feel a little congested at times. The feeling of you are always at work is not a great one.
So, these are some of the most significant pros and cons of having a home business. These play a huge part in determining your productivity both in the short run and the long run. Let’s dive a little deeper now and explore some productivity hacks that can help you deal with the inevitable pitfalls of working from home.
Create a Home Office
You must be wondering why you need to create a home office when you already possibly have one. Well, let me tell you a home office is so much more than just a desk and a computer. Your home office needs to be a space that puts you in a work mindset.
The major disadvantage of working from home is the lack of separation between home and work life.
What happens eventually is that you find yourself more easily burnt out and that affects your productivity in a negative way. Your home office is very important in solving this problem.
If you are working from your bed in your PJs then you need to stop doing that immediately.
Set up a proper space in your house that is your workspace. It needs to be properly set up according to your work preferences.
It needs to be a space where when you close the doors, you are no longer in your house but rather in your office. Here is how you can achieve that:
Select the quietest space in your house – The size of your home does not matter. If you have a spare room that you can convert into an office then that’s ideal but if not then don’t worry just choose a space that is the quietest and offers the least distractions.
Customization – Your home office should look and feel like “YOUR” office. Consider investing in your home office as a necessary business expense. Customize it according to your liking and comfort. This will help you work more effectively and it will help distinguish your home from your office creating a clear line between work and home life.
Close shop when it is time – Just because you have a home business does not mean that you are available 24/7. Treat your home office like well, an office. When you are done for the day, get up, walk out and close the door behind you. Do not enter your office when you are not working.
When you are your own boss, you don’t have anyone to keep you in line. This is both a blessing and a curse as it requires you to exercise self-control. It is so easy to get distracted when you are working from home. And it is so hard to resist these distractions. This is a major productivity killer for home business owners. Here are some tips to avoid distractions:
Don’t use social media – When you are working in your office do not use social media. Turn the notifications for all social media apps off when you are in the office. Do not open YouTube or any other social media platforms on your computer when you are waiting for a call from a client or an employee. Focus on your work. Social media can take your focus off work and you will get less done in more time because of it.
Communicate with your family – An unavoidable distraction when working from home is your family. Communicate with your family, roommate, or partner your expectations when you are working. It is ideal that they do not disturb you when you are in your office. It again goes back to the point of keeping your work and personal life separate.
Don’t multitask – When we are working from home we can often fall into this fallacy that just because we are at home we can juggle personal tasks and work tasks. It is the biggest productivity killer for home business owners. Your focus needs to be on your work 100% when you are in your home office and 100% on your personal life when you are outside your home office.
Make Your Work Easier
When you are a home business owner it is almost your duty to do research to automate your tasks and make your work easier.
When you are working for a company in an office, you need to keep in mind that the company has invested a considerable amount of time and money to find the best possible solutions to increase the productivity and efficiency of its employees.
They have all their systems and processes streamlined so that they can get the most out of the time that their employees spend in the office.
The same concept applies to working from home.
You need to lay out the tasks that you perform for your business and incorporate technology that will help you save time and become more efficient.
If you have a team that you manage remotely then you need to find out which software helps you communicate with them most efficiently and seamlessly.
If you are dealing with clients from multiple time zones then you need to have scheduling software that helps you manage them more effectively.
If you are crunching numbers all day then you need to invest in a good accounting software. And so on.
Technology has made it possible for you to work from home. It is your best friend, embrace it and incorporate it as much as you can into your home business.
So, there you have it. These 3 simple productivity hacks can help you maximize your productivity and expand your home business.
Working from home is a blessing don’t let it turn into a nightmare.
With a few hard rules, you can find long-term and sustainable success along with financial freedom working from the comfort of your home.