If you work from home and plan to do so for the foreseeable future, you need a dedicated workspace where you can concentrate with as few distractions as possible. Here are some tips to help you choose an appropriate site for a home office.
Use a Separate Room for Work
If possible, choose a room that will only be used as a home office. That will help you mentally separate work and home life. Ideally, it should be in a location some distance from the living room and kitchen so you won’t be distracted by conversations, the TV and people moving about and preparing meals.
If designating a separate room as a home office is not an option, you may have to carve out a work area in an unconventional location or change the way space is used. For example, you may be able to use a guest bedroom as an office and have future visitors sleep somewhere else, or you may decide to convert a portion of your garage or a guesthouse to a home office.
Select a Space Where You Can Be Comfortable and Productive
Natural light can have a soothing effect and help you concentrate on work. Choose a room with at least one window that offers plenty of light and a pleasant view. Just make sure that the area won’t be uncomfortably hot while you’re working.
Your laptop, paper documents, product samples and other items that you use to work may be attractive to thieves. Select a location that doesn’t have a window facing the street so someone who is walking by won’t be able to see what’s in your home office.
Most people who work from home need to use the internet at least some of the time. If your router is located far from your home office space or there is a thick wall between your office and the router, you may have a weak or slow connection that can affect your productivity. You may have to move the router or use other measures to have a strong internet connection in your office.
Decide How to Arrange Furniture and Equipment
The type of work you do will dictate what you will require in your home office. A simple desk and chair where you can work with a laptop may be all you need, or you may require a printer, a table and chairs to meet with clients and shelves to store paper and other supplies. You may have to invest in a filing cabinet or safe where you can lock up valuables and sensitive documents.
Next, you will have to figure out how to set up the room. Think about the type of work you do and how you work most efficiently, but realize that your ideal configuration may not work because of space constraints. Be creative and flexible when it comes to arranging furniture and finding storage space.
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