When the Home and Office Become One


You’ve no doubt heard stories about some successful business that started in the owner’s basement or garage. He or she doodled a product or idea on a napkin and set to work making it happen. The entrepreneur would go on to hire employees, move into an office building and enjoy greater success. But there was an early step, which probably came right after the napkin plan. It was a decision to open an office in the house.

Middletown, N.J., resident Gloria Boudreau transformed a spare bedroom into an office when she started her company, Boudreau Fine Art Services, last year. Boudreau worked in New York for a company that arranged for the shipment of exhibitions and fine art. She started her own business after deciding to work closer to home to care for her daughter. She had to figure out the layout of the room and how it could be designed to suit her business needs. It meant going from a larger office in the city to a 10-foot-by-10-foot space at home. There were some adjustments. For instance, her business involves record keeping: “I had to figure out how to downsize that and use the space as efficiently as possible.” Her solution was to put filing cabinets and shelving in a closet and storage files on the walls.

Another entrepreneur, Brittney Jacoves, suggested that a home office have a door. “You have to be able to leave work,” Jacoves said. “Every time you walk by that office, you are going to want to be drawn in. You are going to feel guilty.” In her case, she has a door to the outside of the house, so clients do not have to walk through her home. The other bonus is that she only needs to keep one room clean.

Image via CrapHound

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