“90 Days, Same as Cash!” the advertisement screams from the newspaper ads. What home business owner doesn’t like a bargain? And don’t we all want that mahogany, three-sided, corner desk with matching mahogany and black leather sofa for the office? Home office aesthetics are incredibly important to productivity, as most home office workers have discovered. Often the right color walls can create just the right ambiance. But what should you do to create that mood? And how much should you spend?
First and foremost, remember the mantra of successful home business: purchase only what you can afford for the time. Sure, we’d all like the best of the best to create the perfect atmosphere, but a leather sofa loses its sheen when we’re paying the credit card bill for the next year thanks to our spending spree at Office Depot. If you really like a particular set of furniture, office chair, or desk, then save up for it and buy it with cash. Ironically, many stores are willing to work with you when you come in with a roll of Benjamins instead of a Mastercard. The plastic means far less to them than cash, and they will often be willing to throw in extra items, like a box of printing paper or the small, matching filing cabinet, if you are willing to negotiate with them while flashing your hundreds.
Secondly, organization will do wonders for the overall feel of the office. Have you ever seen Al Gore’s office? Go ahead and Google “Al Gore + Office” and you will discover one of the most expensive and yet ugliest offices on the planet. In the photo, Mr. Gore has stacks of paper hiding his desk and books hanging from every nook and cranny. Now Gore may well argue that his office is organized because he can find what he needs in the blink of an eye. But aesthetically his organizational system stinks. When you organize your office, organize it with two things in mind: your system and the world’s system. Organize it so that it makes sense to you, and then organize it so that if anyone has to find a document in a hurry, like your spouse for example, he or she can find it because you have organized your materials so logically.
Finally, select a paint color and decoration style that both inspires and calms you. Aim to create the best work environment for the primary worker in that office: you. Choose a paint color that does not shock you every time you walk into the room, but one that creates a sense of inspiration and calmness. Then surround your office with photographs, paintings, or items that inspire you. Maybe you want a picture of your spouse on your desk, reminding you of why you work so hard. Maybe you want a picture of your grandfather, whose work ethic you admire, hanging on the wall. Make the office work for you.
Home office ambiance matters. You have the freedom to create a room or space that best inspires you. You have no restrictions like the company policy of only two nails on the egg-shell white walls. Use your freedom to inspire and motivate you to do your best work and thus create a successful home business.