To many, the idea of running your own home-based business is a tantalising prospect. The freedom to work as you please, when you please. Freedom from congested trains and traffic jams.
But beyond the extra hour in bed and the company of your pet, you’re still running a business. Following these 4 easy steps will hopefully help the day to day running of your home business go more smoothly.
1. Don’t Throw All the Rules Out of the Window
A home-based business is still a business. And to run it effectively, you’ll need to retain some level of discipline.
Keep a tight structure to your day, and break down what you need to achieve into appropriate time slots. If you’ve arranged an important Skype call, put on a shirt and tie. Take out a home business insurance plan in case things go wrong.
Not only does treating your business as a business have clear, practical benefits, it also has a psychological effect on you – wearing a shirt and tie at home will make you feel like you’re in work-mode.
2. Do Stay Connected to the Rest of the World
Get in touch with some other home-business owners and find out which suppliers they use. People in similar situations will probably experience the same needs and constraints as you, so you’ll find that the companies they find useful are probably useful to you, too. Make bonds with other non-competing entrepreneurs, and you can recommend each other to clients.
And don’t forget to socialise. You don’t have your office colleagues to chat to any more. Pick up the phone and give someone a call once in a while – it’s a welcome break and it keeps you in the loop.
3. Don’t Stop Learning New Skills
You’re now the manager, technician, administrator and accountant. You don’t have other departments to call, and outsourcing to help with book-keeping and tech support is going to become costly.
Spending a little time gaining a basic understanding of how to work through common problems is going to help you a lot in the long run.
4. Do Keep Yourself Motivated
No one’s going to do it for you. You might not miss your boss breathing down your neck, but it’s now up to you to secure new business and keep on track.
Set your goals, write them down and pin them to the wall. Assess your business’s progress at various stages, and ask yourself: could I be doing more?
Most importantly, don’t become complacent. If working on the weekend is what’s required to close a sale or find the next promising lead, then that’s exactly what you ought to do.