A home-based office has many advantages, not the least of which is that it is a healthier way to do business. When the pandemic forced us to distance ourselves in order to protect our own health as well as the health of others, the boom in home offices followed. However, our need to network and have face-to-face meetings still exists, and teleconferencing is not always the best for your business or for your client’s needs. An office that is safe and professional for those meetings is possible by following a few simple guidelines, provided here by Consort PR.

Safety First

  • Having an office with windows that allows for fresh air and good circulation is one of the primary ways to prevent the spread of airborne viruses. As long as weather permits, keep your windows open or at least partially opened when clients or vendors are present. If the windows or frames are in need of repair, check out online listings for home window repair near you, and be sure to read up on customer reviews to check their experience and capabilities.
  • Regency Lighting points out that UVC fixtures in the HVAC are an effective tool in reducing pathogens in the air. An added benefit is that cleaner air will prolong the life of your HVAC too. 
  • Having masks available and wearing one yourself if you’re not already fully vaccinated or if your client requests one shows your concern for their well-being.
  • Improvements you make to your house to accommodate safe air can add to your home’s appraisal value. Improvements like adding windows and updating the HVAC will add value while at the same time making it safe for not only your clients but for your family as well. Take before and after pictures of those improvements for record-keeping purposes for future appraisals. 

Your Office as Your Selling Point

  • Your client’s first impression is, of course, you. Their second impression, however, will be your office. Making your office stand out as unique and memorable tells them you know a little something about marketing, branding, and style. Use that to your advantage by making a strong impression. Artwork or murals are eye-catching and will be what they notice first, so make it as impressive as you can.
  • If you’re the laid-back sort, stuffy armchairs or heavy drapes will tell a different tale. But if your brand is luxury, expensively upholstered leather chairs and loveseats imply that you are classy and classic. 
  • Laid back, bold, or classy, your look should convey professionalism and quality. Clutter is a big no-no as it conveys a sense of chaos and disorganization. Find ways to keep everything but essentials out of sight with either cabinets, baskets, or covered shelves.
  • Keep clutter to a minimum by automating as much as you can of daily “paperwork.” Online tools that allow you to create your own invoicing system also allow you to customize them, notes Square, saving you both design fees since you can add your own logo and brand colors with pre-made templates, and printing costs. 
  • Add some indoor plants to your office. Not only can plants improve your productivity, but they beautify your space as well.  

Your Clients’ Comfort

  • Having a single-serve coffee station is not only gracious, but these days many people expect to find them in offices. Have a variety of coffees, teas, and hot chocolate available so they won’t be disappointed in not getting what they’d hoped for. That will leave a negative overall opinion that you don’t want them to have. 
  • The chairs you offer them to sit on say a lot about how you value their importance. Ensure their comfort and safety in well-made and safely constructed chairs, this is no place to skimp. A small table with chairs for presentations of documents and prints means they don’t have to hover over your desk too, allowing you to maintain a zone of personal space.

A home office can and should look as professional as any in a high-rise or office park. It just takes a little planning, a little creativity, and a lot of style. 

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