Whether you are starting out as a freelancer, new business owner or are forced to work from home due to the Coronavirus, it can be a little daunting knowing how to start or carry on business from your home effectively. We’ve put together a few top tips to help get you started:
Working from home has many benefits but it is important to establish a strict routine early on. If you are usually office based, use the same routine as you would do when you work at the office - start work at the same time, take your usual lunch break and finish work at the same time each day.
One of the pitfalls of working from home for some is that it can be tempting to be always working. And to keep working until that project or email or design is finished, which can lead to super late nights. Not good for you, your health or your personal relationships, so maintain your regular hours!
2. Set up a designated working area
Work in the same place in your house each day, whether that is in your study, guest room, kitchen or dining room. Set up your work space so that you have everything you need - a table to work from, your laptop and plugs close by, stationery etc.
Doing this will make you more productive than sitting working on the couch (as tempting as it may be). Plus it will also reduce any potential back or neck strain.
3. Liaise with your team via WhatsApp or Skype
Use technology to keep in touch with your team and colleagues when working on projects. Setting up a WhatsApp Group can be a great way of keeping contact with your team, when you cannot physically see them to discuss the work you are doing (especially during scenarios such as Coronavirus quarantine).
4. Set ground rules with the other people that share the space
If you have other people in the house while you are working, you need to set some rules in place of what they can and cannot do during that time. This prevents you from having to work in a noisy environment or from being constantly interrupted.
5. Ask for the equipment and support you need
If you’re working from home for a company or organisation due to the Coronavirus, make sure you ask for the equipment you need. Even if you are only working from home for a few weeks, you should still be comfortable so consider asking for a mouse and keyboard and some kind of back supporting cushion.
6. Take sick days if you need to
When you’re working from home and get sick it can be tempting to keep working. However, its best to let your company and client know you are sick and won’t be working that day or days. Not resting when you are sick can make your symptoms worse and take you longer to recover, plus when you are ill you are not always working at your most productive.