After my last post, Make working from home WORK, I received a few additional ideas that I just had to share. Thank you to everyone who shared your experiences!
Designated Space...The most common tips I heard had to do with space. Anne Marie Szabo of Sparklight says a well organized, designated space that is well-lit and comfortable is a must. While I do a lot of writing from a comfy corner of my couch, my design work definitely requires a desk and a second monitor! A second monitor was a popular tip as well. I can't imagine working without one.
Zoom "Set"... The theater kid in me LOVES calling it a set. Thanks to Anni Lundy of Dialed-In Marketing for this tip. She says that having a space where there is a professional backdrop, but not a boring backdrop, is important when doing Zoom calls with her clients. Below is a picture of mine. I get a lot of compliments on my office setup. It was simple to spruce it up with a painting from Overstock.com and a fake plant. The texture and color makes for a more professional look. Another Zoom tip came from Natalie Barefoot, Attorney with EarthJustice. She keeps a scarf on her office chair to throw over her workout top. This makes it look like she's really dressed for the office!....I mean, we know only the waist up matters anyway.
Get moving!... Jennifer Barefoot, Chief Brand Officer and Shareholder at DMB Community Life, says she takes walking phone calls. If at all possible, she will get up and pace or take a walk during calls so she isn't sitting all day long. Others said they schedule exercise in the middle of the day rather than before or after work, and schedule regular brain breaks. (In case you're wonder, yes, Nat and Jennifer are sisters, and they are both amazing!)
Set hours... Crystal Blanton, Engineer and Partner at Pangolin Structural, says setting working hours and sticking to them is important. Then we laughed, as any mother/business owner would, and she added: "...at least most days." I also heard a lot about setting boundaries with the other people in your
house. (more cackling from moms)
I do have a rule that if I am at my desk, my boys can come stand in my eyeline until I acknowledge them. It works about 30% of the time, and I think all moms would agree that is a pretty good number.
Excellent internet....Before the kids started school, I upgraded our internet and hard wired my office. It made a huge difference with myself and two kids on computers all day for work and school. Jodie Johnson of HydroGeoLogic, Inc says she always has an internet back-up plan. She has apps such as Microsoft Teams and a hotspot on her phone in case the home internet isn't working.
Miscellaneous stuff... Some serious, most not, but all for your entertainment....
A coffee warmer! Specifically this one I got on Amazon. I've had more than one and this one works best
Robot assistant to prepare meals and do other chores
A mute button for the dog
Eyes in the back of our heads
Drink service at exactly 5pm
Hope all of these tips help. If there is a topic you'd like me to write about, you can make a request by clicking here.
Toni Therrien is a web designer, writer, and mother of two wild boys. She helps entrepreneurs and artists by designing unique websites that reflect who they are and what they do. She also does blog and copywriting for clients. To schedule a FREE consultation call, click here.