The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
If you are going to work at home there are some essential things that you are going to need. They are both habits and tools. These essential things can easily make or break your efforts to work at home. However, without a good work ethic, you will be doomed to failure.
It is critical to start your day just as you would if you are physically going into an office. In a real sense, you are. You are just going to your home office. You need to realize that you were still going to be working and you need to have a professional attitude, this includes dressing like you are going to work. Working at home is not the same as lounging around the house.
When working at home it is best to have a dedicated office space. The idea is to have a place that will naturally get you into the mood to work. Ideally, it should be a separate room from your other activities, but if it cannot be a separate room it still needs to be a separate place. Working in the easy chair you watch TV in will not do.
One thing that is important is making a definite schedule. When you are working at home you can get distracted and put off starting your work for the day. If you have a definite schedule it is not as likely to happen. Having a schedule and keeping to it is an important part of the work habits necessary to successfully work at home.
One of the advantages of working at home is the possibility of working when you are at your best. As a result, if you are going to work from home you should find the best time you can possibly work. More specifically you can work when you or at your best. This is an important part of doing the best possible job. While you can carry on a standard nine to five schedule in many cases you do not have to.
If you are going to work at home, you are going to need a fast and reliable internet connection. Ensuring this is the case may require managed IT services for you and your employees. Communicating with those that you are working with, is essential to working at home. In fact in most cases when working at home your internet connection is your lifeline.
One of the most important things about working from home is having the right software to do the job. If you are still an employee of a company then they usually provide the needed software. However, if you are acting as an independent contractor this is likely to only be the case with proprietary software. In other cases, you may be required to obtain the software yourself. In each case, it is important to have the right software to do the job.
Having the proper office supplies to do your job is absolutely essential. If you are working at home you will probably need to get these supplies yourself, even if you are reimbursed for them. This does mean taking some extra time to get those supplies but that can be done during regular shopping. Just make sure you do not run out in the middle of the workday.
Having dual monitors is a helpful way to keep your work organized. It allows you to have more than one window open at the same time. This is particularly true with the relatively small screen of a laptop. It saves you the time of bringing up a second window because it is already there. All this makes having a second monitor a convenient tool.
Working at home has many advantages, but it is easy to get out of a work mentality. Making sure that you are properly prepared before you start working is critical to successfully working at home. It is a rewarding experience but it is not without its perils. You need to make sure you are properly prepared.