Working in an office environment versus working in a home office has meant some changes in how I focus and interact with people. The constant face-to-face interaction IRL (in real life) has been swapped for more time on the phone and using video chat services such as Skype, FaceTime and Google Hangouts. A startup also gives the opportunity to select and use tools that don’t require a large hardware and infrastructure investment, such as Dropbox for file sharing and cloud storage and Rackspace as my mail server. Couple that with other subscription-based products from 37signals and Harvest and eFax, the cost of ownership is pretty low because it’s really the cost of “rental” on a user basis. Several of these services also have corresponding mobile applications that will interact and move information seamless between each other, so it’s made for easy integrations and not a whole lot of repetitive entry of information. There has also been the matter of becoming a member of Associations where my clients and potential clients are, including the CCBFA and NCBFAA. I’m looking at other local chambers and trade associations in the near future.
Working independently has also necessitated understanding what my optimal times are to work, when my clients are in their offices and mixing the sausage-making of accounting and business development with the creative design and writing.
The space used to be a combination office and bedroom. We relocated the “bed” part of the bedroom upstairs to make it a multi-purpose craft room and bedroom for when company visits. The colors were a big change at the outset; as we started painting the charcoal went on a shorter wall and a longer wall behind the desk that’s not in the pictures. When the orange first went on the wall, the reaction was, “Whoa. Are we sure we don’t want to make that long wall charcoal as well?” After the first coat went on, the choice of going bold with orange was assured.
Powered by technology from Cupertino and furniture from Sweden that naturally required assembly (although not made there based on country of origin markings on all the stuff that was unpacked and assembled, the place is coming together. If you’ve got a home office, does it look similar and/or what tools do you use to facilitate working remotely or from a home office?