Success in the home office no.1
Welcome to the first of my top tips series on discipline for home workers. With more than a few years of self-employment behind me I’ve learned a lot about how to enjoy all the benefits of home working without giving in to the lure of the sofa, or an extra few hours in bed! If you’ve got anything to add to these tips, I’d love to hear from you – drop me a line on the number to the left of this screen, or post a comment below.
Plan your day
No matter where you’re working or who you’re working for, you need structure in your working day. When you work for a company, this comes naturally – you have your start and finish times, your lunch breaks (if you’re lucky, these days!) and your boss managing what you do.
When you’re running your own business from home, it is no different. You have the flexibility to set your own hours and work when you like, but you still need to make sure you know what you are going to spend your time on. Being your own boss means doing all the things for yourself a boss would normally do for you – so you need to manage yourself and your own hours. Plus, as a self-employed person, you are usually wearing a lot of hats in your business, so planning is even more important to ensure you can keep all your plates spinning!
Allocate time to spend on these essential areas:
- Client work – the bread and butter of your business.
- Breaks – you need to pace yourself, especially if you’re busy, so use breaks to make sure you keep going throughout a long working day. Healthy snacks keep your energy up.
- Managing your business – this is easily neglected but it’s just as important as working on your clients’ businesses. Set aside time for your bookkeeping, answering emails (a few times a day, rather than being distracted by them as they come in) strategy and business planning.
- Marketing – this includes meeting with potential clients, networking and, these days, I’d recommend carving out some time for your online networking, too. I hear a lot of people say they don’t have time for blogging, Tweeting, and online forums, but online networking is a valuable tool you’d be crazy to miss out on. So treat it as a face-to-face networking event or client meeting, and raise your online profile.
If you don’t feel there are enough hours in the day to do all this effectively, why not give us a call? At Kaleidoscope Virtual Assistant Services we can advise you on time management, or take some of the routine tasks off your hands to give you more time for what you do best.