Many people choose to work from home, or their offices have been moved to their home, due to the current global pandemic. Working from home can be challenging in the best of times, and even more challenging when the home is full of children, activity and distractions. If you don’t have the appropriate office space it can be amazingly difficult to work undistracted, especially for those not expecting to work remotely.
What factors should you consider when planning your ideal home office? You need to consider spacing, distance and furniture when making these considerations. What area will help you be most productive, with the least distractions and How can you feel comfortable yet professional at the same time? Here are 4 easy ways you can set yourself up for success.
Step 1- Choosing Suitable and Comfortable Furniture
There are myriad desk options available, when it comes to setting up your home office depending on the space you have available. For a large room to be turned into an office, a traditional desk can be an option, but the size and functionality depend on available space. If you are working in the corner of a common area or perhaps in a hallway, with limited space an affordable height adjustable sit stand desk can help to give you variable positions to serve you throughout the day and help you feel less stagnant. Standing desks can be a great alternative to traditional home office furniture, as they can reduce back pressure and pain, allowing for flexibility in your body position while working. The type of desk you choose can either enhance or hinder your ability to work at home, depending upon your personal needs.
Step 2- Choosing an Appropriate Work Space
While the living room or kitchen areas can seem like a great area to be working, as it allows you to be in the thick of things, this can also be detrimental to your productivity. These areas are the hub of home activity and can be incredibly distracting. If you have children playing close to you, or a spouse loudly watching TV, these distractions can impede your ability to receive phone calls, attend online meetings, or simply effectively concentrate on your daily work and requirements.
Step 3- Selecting an Area Conducive to Video Calls and Servicing Clients from Home
Generally, in an office environment, this will not be a concern, as meetings and sales pitches are often made in person; however, things are changing and the majority of meetings and conferences are being held via online video calls and Zoom meetings. In this respect, it is incredibly important to think about what your colleagues and prospective clients are seeing behind you, as you conduct your daily business. Ensuring your coworkers and clients won’t be seeing your living room, bedroom or children’s play areas is a must. Just as these areas can be distracting to work in for you they can also be very active and distracting to the people in your meetings with you. Conversely, this also provides privacy for your family in the home, as they live there and will often not be treating the space as a workplace. Don’t have your camera facing a hallway that shows a bathroom or bedroom, to avoid any unfortunate or embarrassing moments for your family. Just as you need privacy to work, they require the privacy to live and when having a home office you also need to remember it is their home. Avoid embarrassing incidents by ensuring your camera is not facing common areas.
Step 4- Decorating your Workspace to Enhance Productivity
Decorating your office as you would a normal office, rather than as you would decorate your home can cause mental separation from your home area, and prepare you to be in a work mindset, rather than an at home mindset. Ensuring appropriate decorations can also help to mentally stimulate you while in the office, and keep you from feeling trapped, especially during this time of lockdowns and quarantines. Adding some plants can increase your mood, and give you something to look at rather than staring at a wall. If you have a window, you can set your desk up in front of it, to help you feel a connection to the outside, while maintaining your appropriate and required distance. Decorating your home office like a normal office will give you a sense of separation and preparedness when entering your workspace, allowing your home office to be a functional place for you to focus and provide the best work you can.