Working from home offers flexibility and the opportunity to eliminate the stresses of a long commute to an office. But, in exchange for this freedom, you need to ensure that your home office set up is optimal for comfort and productivity. Creating personalized choices for your space will enhance your chance for success and foster an ideal work environment.
Know Your Office Needs
Different jobs require different tools to make your home office arrangement successful, so assess and understand your personal needs. Do you need a fax machine or scanner? Do you need a dedicated phone line or can calls be conducted via your mobile phone? Assess whether you are more productive with a traditional desk or if you think better on your feet with a stand-up desk. Are there extra tools that are required for your position? For instance, a graphic artist might need extra desk space to design, while accountants may need a fireproof safe to store client’s account information. By making a list of the tools you need, you will avoid clutter or forgetting an important tool.
Designate a Specialized Area for Work
Once you determine what you need in your office, decide what space works best to be your home office. If you need tons of space, consider designating an entire room to work privately. If you have kids still at home or a spouse that also works from home, having a designated room helps set boundaries between home and work. If your space is limited, then appoint a workable corner where a desk and chair will make an appropriate work area.
Find Appropriate Storage Solutions
A cluttered work area leads to disorganization and unnecessary stress, so it is crucial to balance your work area with the appropriate storage solutions. Buy a desk with built in storage space or add a filing cabinet to store necessary files. Portable containers also make excellent storage solutions for files and paperwork. A bookshelf can complement your office decor with some personality and give you extra storage space. By keeping your office area organized, you will work more efficiently and feel less overwhelmed because you aren’t staring at a stack of papers.
Create Optimal Lighting
Good lighting is crucial for your productivity. Poor lighting creates eye strain, headaches and drowsiness. But with optimal lighting, employees notice an increase in their comfort, mood and energy level. Therefore, if the sun shines too brightly in the early morning hours, install blinds or window treatments to increase or decrease light depending on your needs. In addition, implement task lighting near your desk to help you focus on a specific project, especially for those occasional late night hours.
Incorporate Ergonomic Furniture
Working from home doesn’t mean you should skip out on office furniture. Spine Health recommends ergonomic furniture that provides back support and helps reduce fatigue. Although it might be tempting to slide onto the couch to do work, avoid mixing your personal life with your professional tasks. By creating a comfortable office, you can still maintain your professionalism without feeling cramped or stiff.
Accessorize Your Walls
Since it is your personal office space, get creative with your decor so it reflects your personality. Find motivational decor, or add a fresh coat of paint to jazz up a plain wall. Hang up a few pictures and create a cork board to post to-do lists or other reminders.
A home office has numerous advantages. By creating a proper office setup, you can create an optimal work environment that enhances your comfort and productivity.
Featured Artwork by Julie M. Holloway
Purchasing our own home or house is a dream everyone wants to achieve in their life. An owned house is an important asset that needs to be purchased with care. If 2015 is the year you wish to own a house, I suggest you follow these important factors helping you to decide whether to start looking for houses to purchase.
The satisfaction of purchasing a house comes with great responsibilities, hence it’s better to understand our own duties and obligations as an owner, before starting a hunt for house & mortgages. To know whether you are ready to own a house, evaluate yourself based on these home buying tips.
Is your personal situation good?
Ask yourself that who is gonna live in the house you are planning to buy. Single and plans to marry? Have children who require a yard or need an apartment type property where you don’t have to worry about the garden or building maintenance?
Answer like you’re being interviewed, the stage of your life you are and think about your priorities, among them whether to look afford the house of your dreams with all advanced facilities or just to have a secure roof with least amenities, however with a lower payment.
Are you financially stable?
Think, the money you earn, is it adequate to mortgage payments & everyday living? Buying a house usually needs a down payment, which is not accepted if it’s borrowed or has closing costs. It’s the largest expense in a purchase and certainly the bank will ask for proof that from where the money has come.
Moving is always associated with additional costs, and since there are different types of mortgages, it is better to know how much mortgage can you pay?
Is your job secure?
Another factor you should consider before buying a house is your employment status. You must analyze whether the company you are employed with is stable. Additionally, you have a fixed income or have a room to grow.
Having a secure job will aid you qualify for different types of mortgages, since it’s one of the most important necessity.
How is your credit history?
Like most buyers, if you are counting on a mortgage loan, then certainly its approval will depend on your credit history or report. Getting a pre-qualification is always ideal, as you will not only qualify for a buy, but also you will get an idea of the amount until which you can purchase a home. Hence, you should consult a financial institution for the pre-qualification.
Owner and other expenses
Along with a monthly mortgage payment, you will have owner costs such as maintenance fees, taxes and insurance. It’s not just about having money saved for purchase of your new house. After purchasing the house, the life continues, and so the obligations. Therefore, it’s important not to kid yourself when making a budget.
Besides mortgages & ownership costs, there are daily life expenses such as food, fuel and medicines, etc… you need to take into account when deciding a budget for your home.
Before starting to find a house to purchase, you should evaluate yourself based on the above factors to know if you are eligible & have enough savings, only then you should proceed to buy & look for mortgages.
While spending countless hours behind your desk is a must in today’s business, limiting yourself to office area will ultimately make you start resenting it. In order to prevent this from happening and even help your business grow, you can try spending some time out of your work station.
This can actually benefit your company, as well as you individually. So, if you are looking forward to this move, here are seven reasons why it might be a good idea.
1. On the Road
A number of CEOs, CFOs and COOs take longer holidays once in several years, and no matter whether it’s a tropical island, a cross-country trip or an extended groundlessness, they take their work on the road with them. This allows them to search for new business ventures and clients and see some possibilities that are beyond their company’s headquarters. Also, this is a great way to pass on some business cards and expand.
2. Traveling, Sharing and Growing
While on the road and out of the office, you are in an environment that is completely different from the one you’re used to, and, if you decide not to pass this opportunity, you might get more benefits, too. Use social networks to record your travels, post some pictures and tweet several comments and people who generally follow you on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram will get their interest sparked. Also, they might want to meet you if you visit their towns.
3. Better Communication
You can’t always be in a good mood when you’re behind your desk – the workload and oncoming obligations are ruining your concentration, and that is seen at business meetings. However, if you go out of the office, your perception of the meeting will be less formal and your communication skills will, consequently, be more efficient, so you’ll be able to land clients more easily.
4. Socializing and Closing Deals
There are several perks of being a top-rated businessperson and being able to play golf at world’s best courses is one of them. Moreover, if you golf with people of your rank, you will get to know them better, turn them into potential clients and surely connect with them on more than one level. Closing business deals on a golf course is a global trend nowadays and it doesn’t matter if you’re using golf clubs in Sydney, New York or London, this is a chance you mustn’t miss.
After you’ve left your office, a whole new world opens up to you and you start seeing inspiration in things that surround you. Whether it’s a new architectural design in your neighborhood, nature or simply some passers-by, you’ll feel more alive and inspired when you return to your desk.
6. Get to Know the Clients
When negotiating outside of the office, you certainly meet people in a more relaxed atmosphere and get to know them on a more personal level. And if you hold a high position at your company and care for feedback and how people see you, this is quite important – if you know your clients and users of your services, you will try to accommodate them as much as possible.
While the most obvious positive side of getting out of the office, this is the least mentioned one. But, it’s good to relax from time to time and take some time off from work. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you’ll forget about your business, but just that you’ll be ready for new challenges once back on the force.
If you want to have a better communication with potential or existing clients, wish to present yourself as a charming yet dedicated businessperson, desire to befriend your peers and become more inspired and relaxed, getting out of the office is the right thing for you and your business.
When a business starts to experience significant growth, it is usually a sign of good things to come. Growth implies, not only that business is progressing well, but it also implies that you are doing more with your business. This is a time when a business owner needs to take a moment for serious reflection. It is important to realize how you are growing along with your business. This type of growth helps to ensure your personal growth will not stand in the way of your businesses reaching and maintaining its true potential.
Letting Go of Absolute Control
For many business owners, their business is their baby. As the business grows, it presents new challenges requiring more attention than the business owner is able to provide on their own. A tendency of many business owners is to want to control everything, but this is rarely a healthy disposition in light of mounting responsibilities. Since they cannot be everywhere at once, it becomes evident that they need help to run their business. This often means they must give up some degree of control and employ others to fill positions of responsibility. Before long a business owner will realize that this move is in the businesses’ best interests.
Managing More Employees
As a business owner hires more employees to fill positions in their business, they generally find that they will have to learn how to become an effective manager. This means learning how to properly handle multiple people at one time. From delegating tasks to evaluating performance, the role of a manager is often a very different mindset from a subordinate worker. It is here that a business owner starts to realize how they are not just responsible for their business, but they are also responsible for what their employees do, or not do.
Increased Inventory Concerns
When a business starts out as a small operation, inventory is easy to oversee. As a business grows larger, involving many locations under an expanded corporate umbrella, it becomes far more necessary to handle inventory more effectively. Multiple locations will require product restocking at varied and different times. A business owner must work hard to ensure that their grasp of logistics grows along with the growth of their business over a larger region. They must develop a broader sense of business to business relationships and make sure their supply lines are properly functioning at all times.
Increased Storage Concerns
A business owners storage concerns generally becomes a much more serious issue when a business gets larger. Doing more business means that materials need to be reserved for when they are needed on a moment’s notice. Working with a storage facility, such as Arpac Storage Systems Corp, will make it possible to store large volumes of material off site. This type of accessible storage option will help a business owner avoid many of the problems that arise from logistic glitches in the manufacturing and supply chain.
Knowing When to Not Overextend
Understanding the scope of growth is another area where a business owner must mature and develop with the growth of their business. Continuous growth is simply an expensive matter. One should expect that it costs more money to do more business. Unfortunately, a business only has limited funds at any given time. For this reason, a business owner must know when to pull the reigns tight and prevent further growth from forcing the business to overextend itself into a state of financial distress. As a business owner takes the time to grow alongside their growing business, this helps them to better appreciate how to maintain the health of their business despite its inherent dynamic nature.
Karleia is a freelance blogger. You can follow Karleia on Google+.