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In this day and age of remote work, many business owners are ditching physical office spaces altogether and opting to instead work from home 100 percent of the time. With virtual meeting technology, this isn’t usually an issue. But what if you need to meet with clients in your home?
4 Tips for Seeing Clients in Your Home
The decision to run your business from home is typically one that’s predicated on two factors: finances and versatility. The goal is to lower costs and give yourself the freedom to work how you want, when you want, and where you want. But if you aren’t careful, your pursuit of flexibility can negatively impact your professionalism.
There’s nothing wrong with seeing clients in your home. Whether you run a marketing agency or you’re a therapist, having face-to-face meetings with your clients in your home is no longer as taboo as it would have been five or 10 years ago. People have been conditioned to the fact that business is no longer reserved for commercial office space – it can happen anywhere.
Having said that, it’s easy to appear unprofessional if you don’t have an intentional approach.
If you’ll be seeing clients in your home, here are several of our top tips for being organized and professional.
1. Give Clear Instructions
Going to a house you’ve never been to for a business meeting can feel a little different than having a meeting at a corporate office. Think about things from your client’s perspective. Provide very clear instructions to put them at ease.
For example, if you have a side entrance to your house where clients are supposed to enter, give them a heads up (even emailing them an aerial photo with an arrow showing them where to go). And if you live off a road where it could potentially be difficult to identify your address, consider including a sign or other visual cue.
2. Have Designated Parking
One of the trickiest parts for the client is knowing where to park. They’ll often pull in and think, Do I park on the street? Or maybe I should park in the driveway? If I park in the driveway, will I block someone in?
Don’t force a client to go through mental gymnastics to park. Instead, have a designated parking spot clearly labeled for clients. Ideally, it should be as close to the entrance as possible.
3. Improve Curb Appeal
As soon as you start seeing clients in your home, you have to start looking at your house as your place of business. This means doing everything you can to ensure it sends the proper message about your brand and the value you provide. Curb appeal is one obvious area to pay attention to.
If your current curb appeal leaves something to be desired, there are a few key aspects that you can watch. First, if you have vinyl or fiber-cement siding, you can spruce it up by installing a stacked stone veneer around the base of your home. This creates some visual interest and gives your exterior a more stately feel. Landscaping is the second big thing to think about. Keep it clean, simple, and well-maintained.
4. Minimize Distractions and Prioritize Privacy
When working from home, you have to ensure distractions are kept to a minimum. This is especially important if you have other people living in your home during office hours (like a spouse, kids, or a roommate).
For starters, we recommend setting expectations with anyone who is frequently in your home. Make it clear that you’re “at work” during specific hours, which means you’re totally unavailable (barring any serious emergencies).
Secondly, you have to prioritize privacy (for the sake of your client). You can’t hold a meeting in the living room while your wife is in the kitchen fixing lunch. And you can’t have a therapy session with a client in a bedroom that’s directly adjacent to your kid’s playroom. Privacy is a must.
The best way to minimize distractions and prioritize privacy is by creating a secluded portion of the house that’s specifically used for your business. Depending on the size and layout of your home, this may or may not be possible. Another option is to build a standalone office in your backyard.
Stay Flexible and Professional
Enjoy the benefits of flexibility and professionalism by implementing the tips mentioned above. While there may be some costs involved, making investments in your home will ultimately pay dividends for your business. Find one specific area where you can improve and take action!
Six Office Remodels That Will Help Improve Work Culture
The physical space of an office plays a significant role in creating a positive or negative work culture. When your team members love coming to the office, it shows in their attitudes and overall job satisfaction. Thankfully, by researching a few key remodels, like floor plans, furniture, and LVT flooring reviews, you can create an inviting and inspiring space for your staff.
1. Open Floor Plans
One of the most popular remodeling trends is to ditch the traditional cubicle layout in favor of an open floor plan.
An open floor plan typically means no physical barriers between employees. This can help to encourage communication and collaboration, as employees can easily talk to one another. It can also make the office feel more relaxed and informal, which many prefer.
The downside to an open floor plan is that it can sometimes be too noisy and chaotic. If you opt for this type of remodel, make sure you have ample sound-dampening materials to help keep the noise level down.
2. Private Offices
If you prefer more privacy in your office space, then private offices might be the way to go.
Private offices are small, enclosed spaces that can be used for individual work or meetings with clients or employees. They offer more privacy than an open floor plan but allow for more collaboration since people can easily meet in a small space.
They can sometimes feel too isolating, so make sure you have plenty of other areas in your office where employees can socialize and collaborate.
3. Breakout Areas
Breakout areas are another popular office remodeling trend. These are usually informal and comfortable areas where employees can take a break from work, relax, and socialize. They can include couches, TVs, games, and other fun activities. They’re a great way to support staff, especially if you work in a stressful industry.
Breakout areas can also be used for collaboration, so if you have the space, you may want to consider creating a few different ones. For example, you could have a quiet area for individual work and a more lively area for group projects.
4. Ergonomic Furniture
Ergonomic furniture is designed to be comfortable and supportive. It can help to reduce strain on the body and improve posture. This type of furniture is becoming increasingly popular in offices, as it can help to improve employee health and productivity.
If you’re considering an ergonomic office remodel, talk to a professional about the best way to implement it. You’ll want to ensure that all your employees have access to comfortable and supportive furniture.
5. Updated Flooring
Updating your office’s flooring is another excellent way to improve its look and feel. Replacing your current flooring can make a big difference if your existing flooring is dated or damaged.
There are many different types of flooring to choose from, so you’ll want to consider your options carefully by researching multiple carpeting and LVT flooring reviews. You should also consider how easy the flooring will be to clean and maintain.
6. Better Lighting
Poor lighting can cause various problems, including eye strain, headaches, and fatigue. If your office has fluorescent lighting, you may want to consider replacing it.
LED lighting is a great choice for office spaces because it’s natural and inviting. It also provides better light distribution, so everyone in the office can see clearly. LED lighting is also energy-efficient, so it can help save you money in the long run.
These are just a few of the many office remodeling trends that you may want to consider. Updating your office can create a more enjoyable and productive workplace for your employees.
Research what would work best for your business, and check out all of the furniture, lighting, and LVT flooring reviews you can find before making any final decisions. Your employees will be happy you made the investment and will enjoy spending time in the office.