Make Your Home Office A Professional One

Walking the tight rope between your personal life and your professional life can be tough, especially when you work from home. 

The key to being able to keep the two separate – a vital component for your overall well-being, – and to ensuring you give both the attention and focus that they deserve, is proper organisation.

Working from home shouldn’t mean that you have to forego the professionalism that comes from a productive work environment. Instead, follow the simple steps provided below to ensure that you’re able to not only keep your office environment a professional one, but also help you to organise it in such a way that you’re able to work in an efficient and organised manner.

1. Designate Your Home Working Space

Part of keeping organised while working from home comes from being able to define a suitable space in your home as your work space. Far more effective than simply perching upon the kitchen counter, you’ll be able to ensure that you can give your work the focus it deserves, while keeping clear of the daily goings-on of your home life.

2. Invest In Ergonomic Furniture

Just because you’re working from home, it doesn’t mean that you don’t need to work with furniture that’s recommended for office use. It’s vital that your working arrangements in your home are comfortable, which is just another reason why the couch in the living room or the wooden seats in the dining room won’t suffice. By investing in ergonomically considerate furniture, you’re investing in your own comfort and preventing the possible despondence that can result from being uncomfortable where you work.

3. Balance The Space With Storage Requirements

It’s pretty possible that if your home business related folders and files begin spilling into the rest of your home, you’ll be faced with both an unimpressed spouse and the frequent misplacement of what-could-be vitally important files. The solution comes in assessing your workspace and finding a storage solution to suit it. Massive file cabinets in a tiny room that was once a walk in closet will only leave you feeling claustrophobic and uninspired. 

Rather invest in a desk that uses file cabinets as the base, or store your files in another room – with the permission of your spouse of course! Being a professional means taking stock of the assets available to you and living by the old adage that failing to plan, is planning to fail.

4. Light Up Your Home Working Space

An office in the home requires sufficient lighting that will allow you to see properly at all hours of the day, without having to strain your eyes. While there are certainly all sorts of spaces in your home that you can transform into an office (the basement, an old spare bedroom, etc), you will need to consider your space and work out a solution to any lighting issues that may arise. A daylight bulb can brighten up the space while casting a natural glow on the job at hand, while a table lamp can also keep things lit as you toil away at your desk. 

The goal, when it comes to lighting your workspace, is to create a balanced effect that doesn’t result in eye strain or the need for awkward postures as you try to get rid of the glare on your screen.

5. Do or Don’t Use Your Home Phone

Working from home is a big plus when it comes to reducing your overheads. But it’s vital that you maintain the fine line between your work life and your home life in every way that you can. Some would say that one important way by which you can do this, is to set up a phone line (or a cell phone number) that is purely for professional use. 

Avoid using your already existing home line and you’ll avoid having to share the voice mail message with your family members, while decreasing the risk of having your children answer an important call. At the end of the day, it simply prevents your customers from getting confused and ensures you maintain a profile of professionalism day in and day out.

Remote Employment does not believe this is always the case. It costs money to set up new lines so you have to decide for yourself and with your employer what you're going to do about your home phone.

6. Establish Your Home Office Hours

With work so close, it’s tempting to work at all hours of the day or night. While flexibility is key to working from home, it’s imperative that you established and stick to a working schedule. Not only does a schedule help you to stay focused, but it also ensures that you can give both your clients and your family the attention that that deserve. Keeping a clock in your office will prevent you from losing track of time, ensuring you know when it call it a day and leave your workspace.It’s important that your home office looks and feels an office. 

By keeping it professional, you’re not only increasing the chances of success, but also giving yourself the best possible chance of artfully balancing between your professional and your familial requirements.

Guest Writer Bio

Robyn Porteous is the creative content manager for Varidesk, the original adjustable height sit-stand desk that allows users to transform their workspaces while positively benefiting their health and well-being. More of her writing can be found on her Google+ profile.

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