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Home business: creating the most productive enviro...

Home business: creating the most productive environment

If you work, create, or fix things to make money from the comfort of your own home; it can be difficult to find a calm, secluded space where the rest of the house’s distractions aren’t busy making noise and a mess. Over-crowded and cramped work spaces do nothing for your train of thought and will slow the work process right down. Therefore, it’s crucial that you’re able to find a peaceful sanctuary to type, draw, and work productively, and where you can leave your busy job behind at the end of the day. So many people have unused, dilapidated garden sheds outside, and with a little love and attention; the majority of them could provide the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of your home life and get to work. The following are some tips and ideas for those who feel their shed, sorry, office/studio/workshop, needs some TLC and would make a great business environment for them.

Your Space

After you’ve cleared out the old toys and the garden equipment that’s no longer used, or could be stored in the garage; you’ll need to check over the wooden or metal structure to ensure that it’s sturdy and safe. A little renovation project might be in order; so be prepared to get to the DIY store and invest in new wooden to cover any holes or gaps in your shed. Check out companies like One Sure Insurance so that you can cover an array of items and situations; whether you’re a trader, or need to cover your equipment, it’s an investment you’ll need to make ASAP. Once you’ve sorted out the structural, contents, and usage side of things; you can begin to think about moving forward with the project.

Your Power

Once you’ve ensured the space is structurally sound and weathertight; you’ll need to think about the power source. You can connect your power from your house, and it will be part of your household energy bill. However, you must use the services of a qualified electrician to help you do so; it’s not worth the risk in sorting out the wiring yourself. You’ll need a few power points or sockets, so you can charge and plug in your devices, computer, and things like a printer and tea kettle or coffee machine. You’ll also need adequate lighting, so make sure you have all the fixtures needed in your office before you move in and work there.

Your Comfort

Now for the fun part; you can make your office, workshop, or studio, as unique as you want it, as it won’t affect the rest of the house. So, when it comes to color choices and furniture; choose things that will make you feel comfortable and items that are likely to boost creativity and thinking for a productive week of work. A carpet or a large rug will help the space feel less like an outhouse, and you could even invest in curtains or blinds for the windows. Pop a cushion or two on our seat and take a couple of throws to soften the interior and warm yourself up on winter days. An electric heater will be an essential addition in the colder months, so see which ones are best and invest wisely. Put your artwork and favourite photos up for decorative touches, and make your office a place you enjoy spending your time.


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Christine Buske is a former academic who left science at the bench, and now considers herself a woman in tech. She is a frequently invited speaker, and enjoys talking about career transformation (particularly leaving academia for the business world), tech, issues around women in tech, product management, agile, and outreach. She is a proud Canadian resident, and qualifies as a "serial expat".

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