Running your business from Home is not only something you need to do in during the current crisis, but also once you do it you may never go back.
I started my consulting business 6 years ago. When I first started my business I worked from home. As I have grown my company I have considered getting an office. But, I have to say that it really doesn’t appeal to me. For someone who commuted to the garment center in Manhattan for 30+ years (3-4 hours a day round trip) working from home is a luxury I am not willing to give up.
Of course I set up a dedicated home office like you are supposed to but I find myself sitting on the couch with my laptop most days. Which really brings me joy. The other pro of working from home is the freedom I have to do things during the day that I might not have normally been able to do. Like having lunch with my son or daughter. Another perk is I save on overhead and am actually able to use part of my home expenses as tax deductions.
Now there are cons of course. I work alone most of the time so I miss the interaction in an office. Most of my staff works remotely.
In the beginning I found it hard to create a routine like getting up and being ready to work at a certain time. Or not getting much walking into my day as most days I am sedentary. But over time I have conquered this so that I am able to be effective during the day.
Here are my 5 tips for running your business from home that I have learned over the years.
- I always set my alarm clock so that I will wake up early. – It is easy to sleep in when nothing requires you to get up. At first I would make very early appointments to force me to start work on time. Now I just have the habit in place so that I always begin working at 9AM the latest.
- I have a morning routine – In the beginning I would roll out of bed and stay in my pajamas all day. Boy that messed with my head. I would not feel like a professional and would not feel good about myself. Now I have a morning routine that I do. Get up, take a shower, make the bed, have a tall glass of water, have my coffee and breakfast while reading a business or self-development book. Then I meditate and exercise. All this before I look at my emails. (Some days I cheat and look at my emails when I wake up).
- After I look at my emails and handle any urgent matters, I then work on my marketing. This means writing email blasts, posting on social media, and writing articles.
- I endeavor to do 3 things that drive the needle forward each day. That means building my business. It might be speaking with a potential client, doing a podcast, or developing a new product. Anything that has the potential to increase my business down the road.
- Each day I work on my clients needs and have weekly and sometimes daily phone appointments with them. I also like to make sure we are making progress each week on their goals.
The one thing I try to follow is the concept of “Rowe”. Rowe is an acronym for creating a Results Only Work Environment. This way my days are not about how many hours I work but rather what results I have obtained. In business it is all about the results. If you do the activities that bring you the most results you will attain success. But if you find yourself doing busy work then you are not being productive. It can seem like important stuff but can you truly justify spending hours on things that don’t move your business forward?
Try my ideas for running your business from home a month and see how it works for you. Let me know your results, as I would love to hear them. Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.