Having been in business since 2005, and have very much rode the self-employed roller coaster, I think these last couple of years has had to be the strangest
Until early 2021, we had a nice office at the beautiful Minvera Mill in Alcester. But after the first lockdown and work from home guidance, we moved to a homeworking and flexible model, with the team issue with a laptop and an IP (internet) phone. So our office was left empty for a year (still paying rent) and covid rolled on.
To be honest the new homeworking model has worked very well, we have twice weekly zoom catch-up meetings, an ongoing whatsapp group for urgent collaboration or the good old phone, and occasional face-to-face meetings at the pub. No more traffic issues or fuel costs and everyone loves it, apart from one person... Me
After nearly two years working from home, I have gone borderline stir crazy, struggling to separate the divide between home and work. So (and before good old Boris's latest advice), I thought it was time to open a new office and I've moved in this week. It's absolutely marvelous
Just a small office in a business centre, but it's nice to hear hustle and bustle again and for me personally, it sharpens my focus and makes me more professional. We still utilise the Mill as our address and for mail, but the new office is walking distance from my house, in the centre of town. So a nice brisk walk and wind up into work mode, and then a nice wind-down and arrive in full home mode with work left at the office.
It's been interesting talking to lots of people about this, and I have an (unscientifically proven) theory, that the majority of business owners like to work from the office (with the ability of occasional flexible home working, eg it's really raining!). Whilst the majority of employees prefer to work from home or be more flexible with occasional days in an office.
If employees are able to work from home, then it makes perfect sense to offer it as a flexible option, but I think the drive and passion it takes to push a business forward, requires a more professional setting rather than a home study or dual-purpose spare bedroom.
So what does anyone else think?
- Are you loving the homeworking opportunities and can't imagine doing it any other way, or have you gone a bit cuckoo like me once the novelty wore off?
- Am I right in my suggestion that business owners are more likely to be office-based, or do you disagree?