As part of Work Wise Week this week and National Work from Home Day on Friday, today’s post focuses on how to make the most of the space you allocate for your home office.
The size of your home office and how much time and money you devote to it often depends on how much you’ll be using it. If you’re a freelancer and work from home on a permanent basis, chances are a small flip down shelf is unlikely to cut the mustard. But if you’re starting up a business and only working from home occasionally, you may want something that takes up as little room as possible, while still giving you a defined working area.
Not everyone will want a specific space in their home to work from, but defining your workspace has many benefits:
Assuming you want to create or already have a home office, here are some tips on how to make the most of the space you choose – whether it’s an entire room or a space that converts into a work area.
Even in small homes there are generally some areas that are used less than others. Often they’re the places where the junk collects, such as space under the stairs, a landing at the top of the stairs, a bay window or a corner of a room.
It’s generally easier to set up your office in an area that you don’t currently use very much, as you’ll be able to define this space as your working area from the start. If you work at the dining table for example, you may find its other uses encroaching upon your working time, or that your family constantly interrupts you.
If you can’t find an area, consider a mobile workspace that you can move around and put it somewhere out of the way when you’re not using it. Or if you have the resources to commit and want to separate your work from your home life, you could transform a garden shed or outbuilding to a fully-functional office.
If you have limited space or don’t want your office to take over, don’t forget to make use of your vertical space. Sturdy shelves above your desk can be used for storing all your important documents and items such as printers or scanners, reducing the amount of floor space your office takes up.
You can also take advantage of more unusual storage solutions, such as desks with compartments or shelves and wall-mounted solutions to keep items you regularly need within handy reach.
Define your space
While a dedicated room for your home office enables you to shut the door on distractions – and shut the door on your work at the end of the day, not everyone has this available. You don’t technically need a spare room. There are other ways to separate your work area from the rest of your home, such as:
Left image from the home-designing.com blog. Right image from stuffveronicalikes.blogspot.com
If your home office is part of a room with another function, while you may want a defined working space, you might also want to integrate it so that it doesn’t stand out against the rest of the room. This can be done through the use of colour and the style of furniture you use or you could choose to ‘hide’ your office by creating a wardrobe office, outlined above or using furniture that doubles up as office furniture = see the image of a chest of drawers /desk. There are plenty of ways to get creative with how you use your space.
However you create your working space at home, remember that it should be personal to you and a place that helps you to focus.
Don’t forget, Bizspace have several support services to help you with your business, from meeting and conference rooms, to a mailbox and virtual office service and our newest product, The Work Lounge, our coworking space.