Most business owners know the many potential benefits of working from home. You can reduce overhead costs, improve productivity levels, enhance worker happiness, and generally enjoy more convenience. With these benefits in mind, it’s unsurprising that millions of Americans work remotely daily. However, whether you’re a business owner or an employee, professionalism is a commonly encountered problem. Despite the challenges of maintaining workplace professionalism and high customer service, the information in this article might show you that it’s entirely possible.
Familiarize Yourself With Conference Technology
Conference technology has been a game-changer for many businesses. Rather than meeting with your clients face-to-face, you can invite them to join you on a video call. You can discuss the same topics as you would in person, but you both save time and money by not having to make travel arrangements.
Familiarizing yourself with conference technology can be the first step toward ensuring professionalism while working remotely. If you click here, you can learn about performing Zoom conference room setup. There are also many different software types to choose from. The more familiar with such technology you become, the more competent and professional you can seem when you welcome clients onto calls with you.
Rent a Virtual Office
Many businesses have been surprised by how dramatically their costs have been reduced by transitioning to a remote work model. Rather than spending tens of thousands of dollars on office space, they and their employers can work from the comfort of their own homes at a mere fraction of the price.
However, maintaining a professional image for customers utilizing their services can pose the biggest challenge. After all, you likely don’t want customers sending mail to your home address or calling your home phone number.
That’s where virtual offices come in. You can obtain a business address, mail forwarding service, and reception service for a small monthly fee to offer the illusion of a physical business address. Customers never need to know that you and your team aren’t working together in a physical location.
Create a Dedicated Office
While there’s nothing inherently wrong with sitting on your sofa with a laptop doing your work, this work arrangement can blur the lines between your professional and personal life. Maintain work-life balance by creating a dedicated office in your home. When you’re in this office, you’re working. When you’re out of it, you’re not.
Try to make this space as ‘office-like’ as possible to mimic the very environment you’d be in if you didn’t have a remote position. An ergonomic desk and chair, filing cabinets, and even office plants can all take pride of place in this space.
It can also be important to install appropriate lighting and have access to natural light to benefit your mood and mental health. If you don’t have a spare room in your home to function as an office, consider dividing off an area of another room with a partition wall.
Work Standard Business Hours
It’s well known that many remote employees work longer hours from home than in the office. This can be a pleasant benefit for business owners prioritizing productivity. However, many remote employees and business owners can get into the habit of being in ‘work mode’ even when they’re off the clock. After all, answering emails and performing quick tasks is easy when you’re mere feet from your computer screen.
As convenient as it is to work when you don’t have to commute, maintain your standard business hours. If clients see you answering emails late in the evening or early in the morning, they might start making work demands outside of business hours.
Set House Rules
Working at home can present many challenges for people living with others who might be home during the day. Family members can assume that you working at home means you’re available. Noise can also become a problem when you’re engaged in important business calls.
When you make the decision to start working from home, consider laying ground rules for other house occupants. This might mean not disturbing you in your office space between certain hours and keeping noise to a minimum when you’re on phone calls and conference calls.
Maintain Your Work Routine
It can be tempting to work in your pajamas when you don’t have to drive to an office and mingle with your coworkers. Instead of dressing up, you can lounge around at home with no one being any the wiser about your attire.
However, you might be required to hop on a Zoom call or attend a business meeting at a moment’s notice. As a result, it can be a good idea to maintain your work routine. Get out of bed at the same time you usually would to head to an office and get dressed in your standard work clothing. Put the same effort into your appearance for your online business as you would if you were meeting people in person. Not only can getting ready for the day put you into ‘work mode,’ but it can help you remain professional for your coworkers and clients.
Book Meeting Rooms
While most customer communications can take place online, not all clients are comfortable with that arrangement for all communication. This can be especially true if you’re discussing important contracts or want to meet a new client you plan on signing.
As inviting your clients into your home isn’t the most professional option, you might like to have meeting room providers on speed dial whenever you need to meet clients in person. Many businesses rent out boardrooms and meeting rooms on a short-term basis to help with this.
Rather than declining opportunities to meet with new or existing clients due to your remote work style, you can fulfill their requirements in a professional business space. This is still a far more cost-effective option than maintaining a full-time office you won’t always need.
There’s no denying that maintaining professionalism while working remotely can be challenging. Many people find it hard to maintain a work-life balance or use new remote technology. However, once you have a dedicated workspace in your home and have established a daily routine, you might be surprised by how easy it can be.