Work from home? Office? Which one is better?

by John Durham 30 replies
I have had offices at times... this last couple years I have worked at home though... I have been thinking about getting a small office or something again, and perhap 3-4 telemarketers...

The question is this: Do we REALLY get more done from an office do you think?

Sometimes I feel I would be more productive if I was reporting to some place again everyday, even if I was only accountable to myself... When you have an office it seems like you feel accountable to go there, since you are paying for it and all...

Do you think people are any more focused in an office then at home?
#main internet marketing discussion forum #home #office #work
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  • Profile picture of the author Lynnth
    It all comes down to self discipline. Working at home can have many distractions. You need to setup an environment where you can be free of distractions. If you can't manage that from home, an office might be your only recourse.
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    • Profile picture of the author DomenicoGrecojr
      From my experience it is better to have an office if you find that you can't focus at home. You'll become so much more productive.

      If you want to try working at home again, spend 3 days doing so without giving up your office.

      If you find that you can work nicely during those 3 days then you're ready to work at home. It's best to hire an office short-term. e.g. 1-3 months.
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  • Profile picture of the author RyanRobinson
    I think an office has the natural "working environment" feel to it. People go to offices knowing they are about to work. Your mentality may change when your working in a different environment ie, your home, this could cause you to slack a bit due to your home being the natural place to relax.
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  • Profile picture of the author Caleb Spilchen
    The messy corner of my room
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  • Profile picture of the author Brad Gosse
    I sold my 2000 sq ft office condo in December and moved everyone home (virtual).

    We all get more work done because everyone doesn't have to stop when something happens.

    I tossed $7k in monthly expenses for more productivity and a better lifestyle.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Durham
      Originally Posted by Brad Gosse View Post

      I sold my 2000 sq ft office condo in December and moved everyone home (virtual).

      We all get more work done because everyone doesn't have to stop when something happens.

      I tossed $7k in monthly expenses for more productivity and a better lifestyle.
      Office Condo...? Hmmm.... that sounds nice. 7k is a drag though.

      My wife and daughter are stopping me every 5 minutes today for instance...
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      • Profile picture of the author Brad Gosse
        Originally Posted by John Durham View Post

        Office Condo...? Hmmm.... that sounds nice. 7k is a drag though.

        My wife and daughter are stopping me every 5 minutes today for instance...
        Close yourself in. They need to respect you are at work. Your family should treat it like you are 50 miles away.
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  • Profile picture of the author Johstin
    I am currently working from home with a space set up as an office. Honestly speaking, it's all about mindset and the environment you create for yourself. You have to create a space that's intended for work only. It will get you in the mindset of work instead entertaining or sleeping or eating. Setting up an office at home is also great for tax purposes. People often mistake that working from home means they have it easy. But in actuality in order to realize the visions of success that you have, you must put in the work. To be honest, I think it's much tougher than working on a job. If you don't have the cashflow for it, I think working offsite will become expensive.
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  • Profile picture of the author theory expert
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    It depends on the person, I can see both sides. I think where you live you have 4 seasons so it may sound like a great idea during the favorable months, but, you might not want to go to the office during the less than favorable weather days .

    Although, I suppose the office could be within walking distance and you could check in when you think you need to right? :confused:
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  • Profile picture of the author tecHead
    ...depends on the individual(s) involved; doesn't it?
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  • Profile picture of the author Bruce NewMedia
    John I had an office over 10 years ago. It was one of those shared office suites and was only a few miles or so from my home. It turned out to be not worth the money, at least in my case.

    I had to dress for work, usually ended up eating out, and the office came with all kinds of costs I never really expected. Once I closed it and setup everything in my house, I realized that was the right approach for me. I have no distractions and my commute is about 12 feet!
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  • Profile picture of the author Thimblewimp
    The best make your home as an office
    I always wanted to, it seems convenient and fun: D
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  • Profile picture of the author gravtex
    As soon as I decide to take the plunge to hire local employees I'll get an office.

    I really like my setup as it is - I take my laptop to the coffee shop in the morning to work on writing and then head back to my home office to work in the afternoons.

    It gets me out of the house so I don't go crazy and can be around people yet I don't have all the extra costs of an office.

    Gary
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  • Profile picture of the author addykho
    It depends on your needs. If you have staffs, you may want to get yourself an office. But if you are a lone ranger, then a home office may work. Again, every individual has different working habits. So you will have to see which working conditions best suit you. You can check out the first few tips at the 101 Top Tops for Working from Home to see if they help you to make up your mind
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  • Profile picture of the author Borlok VA
    Nothing beats a home office for me. I even wrote an article about the joys of being a virtual assistant. The same still goes. You might be interested in an article I wrote on my blog "Recap on the Benefits of Becoming a Virtual Assistant."

    If nothing else, you might enjoy the read.


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  • Hi John,

    I work from home, but I have my own discrete office and wireless broadband so I don't get distracted.

    When I first started I over did it and basically nearly burned out! Because there is no travelling to work, no set breaks during the day, and work is down the hall you can end up working too hard.

    When I started working from home (my wife!) caculated I was working 13-14 hour days - it was pretty stupid.

    You need to set a daily schedule and stick to it - no working after tea!

    But over all when things settled down I found it very productive - maybe a little lonely - but your time is your own and your overheads are low!

    Added to the convenience factor I live on a farm and travelling to work each day was costly both dollar wise and time wise.

    So try it and see how you go.

    Hope this helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    @ Michael. Great thought contribution. Thanks.
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  • Profile picture of the author mt33
    working at home is better, you can be your own boss and can manage on everything. but working in office you are not free and a manager command to you that what to do then you focus on online business that it's better than offline business.
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    • Profile picture of the author jhornung
      I had offices in previous businesses and I would always get distracted by customers coming in, vendors trying to sell me stuff, etc. Then I'd end up working late and seeing my family less.

      I thought I'd never be able to work from home - that I'd end up playing Nintendo, watching Sports Center, or hanging out by the pool...

      But I've been doing it now since December and I get boat loads done here. Thankfully, I've been able to train my wife and kids that when I'm at my desk, I'm working, so they pretty well leave me alone.

      My office is in our large family room (since all of the bedrooms are used up) so I'm right out in the open. I just throw on the Bose noise canceling headphones and just jam. 12 hour days, 6 days a week...
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  • Profile picture of the author jacktackett
    As others have pointed out there's no right or wrong answer since it depends on the individual and the nature of the business. If you need to meet constantly with clients then an office is usually a necessity - especially if you take zoning ordinances into account. Can you see a Doctor working from home and having to see patients? (a consultant could probably work from home if they only see records and not people). Also if you need to interact a lot with your coworkers that may necessitate an office. If you're a one woman/man outfit then perhaps a home office is fine.

    I have a separate office fully furnished in my basement and it works out great. My family knows if the door is closed that I'm busy and not to be disturbed - usually because I'm on a conference call. I have a small table and my 2 other partners can sit comfortably in my office and we can all work together if need be or work alone. We typically meet face to face once or twice a month, and the rest of the month we either call each other on our cells or via skype or email. This has worked well for us since 2005.

    Now for about half the year in 2009 we did have one of those office suites type places since we thought we would be growing and wanted a physical office. But after 6 months after our lease ran out we got together and decided while it was a nice to have - it wasn't a requirement.

    The only real time someone wanted to meet with us were vendors trying to sell us something. All our potential customers we handled as we always did - first via webex demos and then on site (at the potential customer) proof of concepts. The monthly fee we felt was better spent on marketing to get more customers.

    I feel also - like others here- that its up to the individual user. If you let yourself get distracted by every little thing (oh lets see what's happening on guiding light as I stroll to the fridge for a Coke type thing) then maybe working at home is not right for you.

    But if you can be productive and not distracted then maybe that money spent on an office can be better spent on marketing or other costs/investments.

    And if you really need a conference room or a business address/phone service then check out some of the local office suite places - most offer a virtual office package that will answer the phone for you, accept snail mail letters and packages, and also provide conference rooms for meetings at a reduced rate. They typically will offer a conference room even if you're not a customer but at a really higher price - so that covers a lot of what a regular office space would cover except for being on site each day.

    good luck!
    --Jack
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  • Profile picture of the author good2go4
    I have always worked from home and when my kids were young it was hard because I was always getting interupted. If I managed to get them sorted then I would have visitors because family members did not respect my "working: hours. However the bonuses were that I could have a coffee break when I wanted one, I did not have to dress up and if I couldn't sleep work was always waiting for me in the corner of the lounge.

    Now the kids have grown I have my peace and quiet but I also find that it is easy to over do things - I can "work" up to 16 hours most days and rarely take a full weekend off unless kids are visiting. But that said, over the past two weeks just after my new granddaughter was born I could spend time with her because I do work for myself.

    If you are working from home then set up some boundaries everyone around you respects (not easy I know, but worth a try). Also try and set a semi-proper schedule for your day - set times off for lunch and finishing in the evening. If you don't do these things it is too easy to get distracted or burned out.

    Best wishes
    Lisa
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    • Profile picture of the author Jacer
      I was thinking about this very question during my big week last week. Then I started reread "4 Hour Work Week". Now I am doing everything I can to make sure I don't even need an office. I would much rather power up my laptop on the kitchen table for a couple hours each day than being chained to a desk all day long. I mean, wasn't that the dream that made us leave our "jobs" behind?

      It is going to be a process, but my 30 day goal is to cut my work down to two hours a day by outsourcing and hiring a VA.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    Originally Posted by Jacer View Post

    I was thinking about this very question during my big week last week. Then I started reread "4 Hour Work Week". Now I am doing everything I can to make sure I don't even need an office. I would much rather power up my laptop on the kitchen table for a couple hours each day than being chained to a desk all day long. I mean, wasn't that the dream that made us leave our "jobs" behind?

    It is going to be a process, but my 30 day goal is to cut my work down to two hours a day by outsourcing and hiring a VA.

    Just keep slammin the closes ... momentum is alot in building a biz. You gotta keep it up bro... keep that pipeline flowing... There's a lady in another thread "Why NOT do offline Marketing..." who has a $650 a month client she is having trouble closing, perhaps she could make a transfer to your op, and stuff that one in your pipeline...?

    You can get 10 different people transferring leads to you right from this very forum.
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  • Profile picture of the author seoindiaforu
    An office is an office and a home is a home.More productivity is achieved in an office rather than working from the home.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rock Solid
    For me at least I find it psychologically better to differentiate my "work area" from my "home area" or else I end up mixing the two and turning "home area" into "every area" which isn't good because I can sit in front of a computer for 18+ hours on end and work straight through. Whichever you choose make sure you're disciplined to differentiate the two...
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  • Profile picture of the author Kerryrus
    I think it comes down to personal preference and circumstances. I personally work from home which I actually prefer it that way and the environment is quiet from 9 - 4 as there's only me here during those hours. However, some people would just feel better commuting to and from work. Maybe they don't feel so isolated this way.
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  • Profile picture of the author Byrt M
    It depends on our personality and discipline. Working for myself allows me the privilege to work from my home or at my office, a 30 minute drive away. For me, I find that I get more productive work done at the office than at home. For some reason, I am lazier at home...fridge, TV, fridge...
    Byrt
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  • Profile picture of the author Lawyer Websites
    It is all about you. I work from home and I am always "at work." I find it much easier and it saves a lot of time working from home. No more time getting ready and commuting. Saves at least 15 hours a week when you factor in travel, getting ready and lunch breaks.

    I have had both. In fact, I love the money saved as well. If you do plan on hiring people than you should have an office with the appropriate insurance coverage. Hope this helps!
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    • Profile picture of the author addice
      Hmm, I don't know if it's just me, I just couldn't work at home! Neither can I study. (Actually I do blog at home, but I don't treat it as work )

      I love work and study in the library, cos library gives one of the best environment to do those (the only distraction is the people who walk around).

      I can't work or study at home because distraction is all over - food, TV, Internet, etc etc etc. Not productive.
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    • Profile picture of the author Pluton
      As someone else mentioned - it's down to mindset.

      I live in a beautiful part of the world and my home office overlooks the flowers and trees in a large garden.

      It is important not to get involved in the normal domestic comings and goings as large amounts of time can be absorbed very quickly.

      The huge plus side is that there is no travelling so maybe saving 2 hours a day plus the costs.

      Personally I do normal office hours to keep in some kind of routine but may take days off to go flyfishing depending on the weather - it's this flexibility that I enjoy working from home - in fact, thinking about it, I may go and try that new rod out this afternoon............
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