Article by Jane Tweedy, Business Advisor, Western Sydney Business Centre
There are pros and cons to running a home based business, and school holidays can be a very difficult time for those who have school aged children. Suddenly your routine is thrown into disarray, so it’s important to restore some order to retain productivity.
Home office set-up
- Set office hours for your clients and your family, and communicate those hours
- Ideally have a separate office area, so you can close yourself off from distractions
- Make sure you have approval from Council to run a home based business, and tell your insurer
- Consider utilising a casual co-working space like The Creative Fringe to get some time with other businesses, or join some local networking groups. It can get lonely without colleagues.
Time management tips
- Schedule quality time for work, rest and play – for you and your family
- Consider changing your holiday exercise to include family activites like hiking
- Where possible, pre plan and schedule ahead social media posts and blog writing
- Be realistic about your to do list and prioritise the most important tasks
- Turn off notifications on social media and email, checking only at set intervals during the day
- One of the benefits of being a home based business, is that you don’t need to work office hours, but can be flexible around other activities
School holiday tips
- Utilise school holiday programmes or have play date swaps to give you a full day child free
- Avoid scheduling large irregular chores for school holidays, it’s just adding additional pressure, unless it’s something you can involve the family with
- By giving your family some quality time in the morning and over dinner, you may be able to work in the afternoon and after dinner on your business
- Record school holidays in your calendar even if you don’t have children, as school terms cause a slowdown in business activity
Many of the tips involve double timing, but in a good way. If you’re all doing your own thing on your own devices, it’s not really quality time with family. Remember it’s only two weeks!