Can You Operate a Business from Home? [What to Know]

More and more people are choosing to work from home for a variety of reasons. Additional time with family, a flexible schedule or to ditch the commute. Working from home as an employee is one thing, but what if you're an entrepreneur? Can you fully operate a business from home? 

What to know when operating a business from home

Whether you want to take your brick-and-mortar business remote or you're in the midst of launching your business, there are many factors to consider when making the decision to run your business from home. 

Before you take the leap, let's look at strategies for separating your work from your personal life, staying focused and what to do when you need to work away from home.

How to separate work and personal life when working from home

Many people find it difficult to balance their work and personal lives when they're just starting to work from home. When your couch (or bed!) is also your office, the lines between work and play are definitely blurred. 

Having a dedicated office nook allows you to remove distractions and creates a physical space where productive work happens. It signals to everyone in your household (you included) that when you're in your office, you are working.

If your office is in a separate room, even better! At the end of the work day, you can close the door and enjoy your personal time without the temptation to work from the couch (or bed).

Strategies for staying focused while operating a business from home

A common assumption people make when they think about working from home, is you stay in your PJs, make TikToks and somehow, mysteriously, money accrues in your bank account.

Unfortunately for the vast majority of business owners, this is not the case.

Whether you work in a traditional office or you operate a business from home, seasoned business owners know if you want a sustainable, profitable business, you need to stay focused and productive.

Time blocking

Effective time management is one of the most important strategies you can implement in your business. And this becomes all-the-more critical when you work in an environment with distractions. Time blocking helps you schedule your day in order to maximize your time and productivity. Predetermining short blocks of focused time helps you move through your tasks in an effective way. When done right, time blocking kicks your brain into high gear so you can accomplish what you need to without wasting precious time staring at a blank screen or wondering what to work on. 

For example: 

● 8:00-8:10 a.m. drink coffee and eat breakfast

● 8:10-8:40 a.m. answer emails

● 8:40-9:00 a.m. write to-do list

● 9:00-10:00 a.m. work on first task 

● Etcetera

Habit Stacking 

Habit stacking is a way to help you develop consistent systems so they become automatic. For example, a productive habit stack could look like: 

● After I drink my first cup of coffee I will write my to-do list

● After I write my to-do list I will check my email

● After I check my email I will answer the one most important email

● After I have answered one email, I will begin the most important task from my to-do list

● Etcetera 

Each small habit triggers the next habit, and the next and the next. Over time, this becomes automatic, reducing your cognitive load and “what do I do next” moments. 

Can you operate a business from home if you need to meet with clients? 

There are a lot of advantages to operating a business from home. Flexible schedule, comfortable environment and no commute, to name a few. But what about those times when operating out of your home won't work? Maybe there's remodeling happening, and it's exceptionally dusty and noisy. Perhaps you're traveling and you need a place with reliable Wi-Fi for calls. Or perhaps you have in-person meetings, and your kitchen table just won't do. 

In these situations, using a coworking space or renting a meeting room may be just what you need. These venues provide a professional office setting for you to conduct business on an as-needed basis.

So, can you operate a business from home? Absolutely YES! In the past few years, the WFH lifestyle has become more realistic for office workers and entrepreneurs, and many people thrive in a flexible work environment. The secret to sustaining this arrangement is by implementing strategies to separate personal life from work, finding ways to maintain productivity and focus and having back-up spaces for when working from home just doesn't work.


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