Being self-employed is inherently challenging, and while it offers freedom and unlimited possibilities, it also leaves you in a position where you will often have little support. This can apply from an emotional perspective, though hopefully not, but also from an administrative one. Indeed, working in a fully serviced office provides you with so many things that are very easy to take for granted. Print out a document, log on to the web, or if you’re stuck in the Stone Age you can probably even find a fax machine. If you’re working from home in a self-employed fashion all of these things become issues, so it’s very important to consider what facilities you have at your disposal before you start such an undertaking.
Meeting & Office Space
One of the most important areas, and one that is often forgotten, is meeting space. The vast majority of businesses involve at least some form of face-to-face meetings – this has decreased to
some extent of late with the rise of sophisticated confe
rence call technology but not significantly. Indeed, meeting your clients in person is incredibly important as it will engender teamwork, friendship and solid lines of communication. In this respect it’s important to arrange somewhere you can book meeting rooms. Many places which offer temporary office spaces, i.e serviced offices, also rent out conference rooms, so these should be your first point of call.
Technology is a second area you need to consider as you start up your own business. These days you need a fair amount of equipment to run any office. A good laptop is essential, while you may also need a printer, web-design capabilities (your best bet is the Adobe Creative Suite) and even a camera. Make sure to spend wisely here and get only what you need. Also resist the temptation to buy expensive software or server capabilities – there is a great deal of freeware (such as Dropbox, Gmail and iCloud) which you can use to replicate traditional in-house IT services.
The most important thing you can ever do in this regard is to make a budget. Figure out exactly how much you have for facilities and spend every pence, but equally don’t buy anything frivolous. Beyond that save your money for meeting space and office rental as you may need those to impress prospective clients.
Image Credit: By Luis Argerich from Buenos Aires, Argentina (Meeting room Uploaded by guillom) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
- Boost business with the right office (simplybusiness.co.uk)
- Top Tax Write-offs for the Self-Employed (turbotax.intuit.com)
- ‘What is an iCloud:’ users confused about Apple’s storage tool (theverge.com)
- Office 15: Microsoft’s Best Bet For Beating Dropbox, iCloud, Google Drive (fastcompany.com)
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