It’s well-established that the home office is no cube in the corporate hive. Its feel, funk and accoutrements are distinctively NOT Facilities Management-Approved. The Good Housekeeping Seal has a totally different definition in the home-based workspace.
That said, and beyond the two-line portable phone, the wireless headset, the ergonomics (keyboard, foot rest, and Aeron chair), the 5-Hour Energy, and the licorice Jelly Bellies, what makes your home office a place of comfort and business? My elements would include…
- iTunes. For the right audiophile, music can be great for the work or creative process. I have 2,600 tunes queued up on iTunes with an old pair of Altec Lansing speakers. They’re weaker than I’d like. So for those times I want more, I plug my synched iPod into the mStation tower. Great highs and lows for full and balanced sound – especially at those times when it’s just me and Stella the terrier and no one else to complain (it also includes a remote control — another killer tool for any home office device). Ahh, a little Black Crowes came on just as I’m writing this…
- Fans. Summer’s approaching (on some April days, it seems to have already arrived in South Florida). I have a small fan cooling the PC tower. A ceiling fan circulates air in the space. But the kicker is my tower fan – complete with a wireless remote control. Set about 10 feet from me, the moment I feel warm, I grab the remote and flip it on. Way cool (figuratively, and literally).
- Black-out shades. Two windows with a western exposure can make my home office a toasty place – tower fan notwithstanding. So both windows have high-level filtration to keep both light and heat down. Shades and blinds also serve a security role, blocking the view of peering eyes.
- Light. A nice, subdued task lamp on the desk sets a great mood for early morning or evening work sessions. Even during the peak of day, when the corner lamp or ceiling fan light kit overhead is overbearing, the task lamp is a night addition to the ambient light from the windows.
What makes your home office a great place to work?
Since the ’80s, Jeff Zbar has been a writer, speaker and spokesman on all facets of working from home and entrepreneurship. His columns, blogs and interviews have appeared in The New York Times, CNN, Entrepreneur, Home Office Computing, South Florida Sun-Sentinel and the South Florida Business Journal. He also serves as a small business expert on national television and radio. Follow him on Twitter @chiefhomeoffice or at www.chiefhomeofficer.com.