The Covid-19 pandemic has changed many aspects of life, including how we live and work. As working from home has become more widespread, and looks like it has become a fact of life for some, finding ways to property adjust is important.
If you are a small business owner or self-employed, the changes faced in remote working may have been more difficult than for most. Without a team or employer to rely on, all decisions regarding business approach are solely down to you.
While this is true even during normal times, the unexpected and constantly changing circumstances of the past year have amplified this fact. Those working for larger businesses had direction and support from their work, while self-employed individuals had to navigate the changes alone.
Whether your business thrives or fails in the current situation is up to you. This can lead to pressure, a tendency to either overwork or avoid, and eventual burnout.
Creating a sustainable and realistic routine will help to make working from home more manageable. Despite the difficult circumstances that have made remote working necessary, you may find that it has become a positive for you after implementing these tips.
Being able to adapt to changes is a core factor of long-term success in a business, and is especially important for small businesses.
Create A Dedicated Workspace
Separating your work and home life helps you to maintain complete focus during your work hours, as well as switch off fully in your downtime.
Of course, working from home makes it very easy for these lines to blur. Not having a clear distinction between the time you dedicate to work and the rest of your life can affect you both in terms of your productivity, and your general mental health.
The lack of distinction between work and free time can leave you feeling distracted, unmotivated, and unproductive during work hours. It can also mean you spend much longer doing work than you would otherwise and don’t leave enough time to unwind.
A great way to reinforce the separation between work and home life is to create a dedicated workspace that is used solely during your work hours.
This means you will have a “work zone” at home where you go to complete work and can leave once you have finished for that. Whether you have the space to turn a spare room into an office, or simply move a desk to an empty corner of your living room, any area you can dedicate to your work will create mental separation between work and home.
Be Clear In Your Goals
Setting yourself clear goals is the key to creating a successful working from the home procedure for your small business or sole enterprise.
As a business owner or self-employed contractor, it can be hard to maintain your pace of work while working from home. Not having external or face-to-face feedback on your work can make you feel discouraged.
Without clear goals, there is a greater risk that you will spend time on non-essential tasks or waste time. For a small business or self-operated enterprise, this is a much bigger deal than for a larger company. Everything needs to run as efficiently as possible.
Since you need to build motivation and a strong business direction from somewhere, you will have to form these motivations yourself. Setting clear goals is a great way to do this.
During difficult or stressful days you can look at your goals and remind yourself what is most important to get done based on your business goals.
Set A Routine For Yourself
An effective way to operate your own business from home is to create a daily routine to stick to. Decide how much time you need to spend working each day and build an ideal schedule around this.
As the main issue with working alone at home is keeping productivity high, making a structure for each day can assist you to have a more successful work from home operation.
Your routine will depend on how well you are able to predict the tasks you will need to complete daily, as well as how much direction you need to keep yourself on track. Some people will benefit from clearly blocked out sections to work on each task, while loose work hours and a simple to-do list will be enough for others.
If you are finding yourself easily distracted working from home, it might be a good idea to schedule shorter bursts of work with five-minute breaks in between.
You know your business and yourself better than anyone, so take some time to consider what your most productive and positive day would look like, then implement a routine to highlight what may help you.
Keep Track Of Successes
Working from home can be a lonely and thankless task. In order to maintain positivity and pride in the work you are achieving, you can find ways to keep track of your wins.
You can do this in many ways, from keeping a running list of business successes or finding ways to celebrate milestones.
When working to run a small business as the sole employee, your day can easily be filled with troubleshooting and problem-solving. Even on a good day, you will be busy all day long.
Because of this, you may not consistently acknowledge the successes you have as you have to go to the next task that needs your attention. Keeping track of your wins, even in a very simple way, will mean that you are easily able to look back and remember what you have achieved.
This way, when you feel like you are not getting anything done you can think back to these wins you kept track of. This will help motivate you to push on.
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If the pandemic has taught those who are self-employed anything, it is that you need to be able to be flexible.
When working from home, ensure you allow room for flexibility both in your business and for yourself. This can mean taking a day off if you need it, or having a longer lunch break if you need a breather.
Being flexible with your business operations also encompasses your ability to think on your feet and adjust to new challenges. For example, remain open to trailing new methods or technologies that may help your business operate from home.
Constantly re-evaluate what is working and what isn’t in your business processes. This will allow your business to remain successful through the changes of the current situation, through working from home, and in your future efforts.
Being able to take a step back and analyze the position of your business is important. When considering the future direction of your business, you may see the need for a major change. Whether you plan to take on a joint partner, sell your business, or undergo any other big change in business operations, a business valuation will help you.
An expert business valuation from Valuations SA will provide you with an accurate market value of your company, as well as insights into its operational and financial success, and overall standing in its industry.
Having this information will help you make the right decisions for the future success of your business.