From the outside looking in, a home-business appears to be the ultimate luxury. The truth is, there’s a fair amount of discipline and hurdles you have to face in this venture with strong boundaries and a stronger mindset essential to success. If you’re about to embark on a home business or looking to recalibrate your existing one, implement some of these strategies and start seeing some growth and accountability today.
The right technology
If you are running your home business on manual processes and outdated procedures, then you have likely experienced some stress and frustration. It really doesn’t haven’t to be that difficult, and most savvy home businesses have implemented workflow software that can connect, coordinate and manage tasks and team members. Microsoft Teams is a favourite for most startups, as it comes with an Outlook account and can facilitate video calls, shared documents and can even host meetings without having to stuff around with complicated screen sharing programs. The enhanced technology could be the missing piece that is keeping you from reaching new heights.
Bring some clarity to those blurred lines
Now that you operate your work at home, you can work a ten-hour day if you like, or you can clock a three hour day. This can be a blessing and burden, and without home business boundaries, you will lose grip on your personal and/or professional life. Neither of which is a good outcome. Set out your work hours and stick to them, and try to conduct this work in a dedicated room or area in your home so that it doesn’t bleed into your personal life. You can take this formality a step further and dress as you would for a day of work, and choose video calls over phone calls so that you are accountable to your clients and team (and it gets you out of your track pants).
Implement formal plans and goals
Conducting your business from home might make some processes casual, but you shouldn’t be complacent in operating without a strategy, mission or plan. If you haven’t already, take the time to:
Identify your mission statement
List the tasks that are essential to success, and list the ones that are hindering your productivity
Write down what your sales and marketing strategy is - even if you can’t activate it right away
When you have clearly articulated these essential plans, you can assign dates and metrics to them. ‘Expand nationally’ might seem like a manageable outcome to strive for, although ‘Achieve setup and services in X state by May, and X state by November’ might be a more realistic metric. The old adage about goal setting still rings true - realising a dream makes it a goal, and writing down a goal makes it a plan. Invest in your home business like a structured enterprise would, and get your plans on paper and into action.
Celebrate the wins
Mental health can be a big hurdle for many home business operators, with isolation and increased pressures making a stressful mix for many. This is why it is imperative that you take the time to stop and smell the roses and celebrate the wins as they come. It’s so important that you have context over your journey, and can stop and reflect on how far you have come and reward yourself, and your team, accordingly. Maybe this is a monthly special meal out or buying yourself a piece of tech that you are lusting over. Whatever you need to do to retain a positive relationship with your work and overcome a hurdle.
Home can be a paradise or a prison, and it really depends on what you have in place to overcome the hurdles and create success with your mindset intact. Implement these strategies and give them the time they deserve.