A few years ago I took the plunge and quit my job in the busy corporate world and stress of London to relocate to the Cambridgeshire countryside and set up my own business. I’d had enough of long commutes, tiring hours, being overworked and having less time to see my family. Having acquired plenty of experience in the business world it seemed like a good time to set up my own company. It was a risk and I came across barriers and dilemmas at almost every step but it was worth it in the end.
My family and I relocated to a village just south of the beautiful city of Cambridge. For me there was no place I’d rather be, it’s a beautiful city full of creative minds and a rich history. For us the village location was perfect as it was close to good schools and only a short commute into the city itself, which I knew would hold plenty of opportunities for business and networking.
One of the major decisions I faced was whether to set up a home office or to rent a small office in the city. It was a decision I struggled to come to, I spent endless amounts of time weighing up the various pros and cons. So hopefully the following advice will help anyone who is currently in my situation come to an answer that’s best for them.
So to start, let’s make it clear. I reached my final decision after a weeks of pondering and I decided to rent commercial office space in Cambridge, in the heart of it all! And I’ll tell you why.
There are less distractions in an office. Although working from home sounds like the dream, ultimately it can be very distracting and especially if you have young children in the summer holidays. I decided to trial the first two weeks after the move working from a home office. I found my concentration levels dropped significantly and I’d find myself wandering off to the kitchen far too often.
You have more hours in a day when you work in an office. Especially if you have children, they’re often home by 3.30 which cuts up the day. In an office I begin at 9 and work through until around half past 5. I get a solid days work in before I can leave the office to spend the evening cooking dinner with the family.
You can hold client meetings at your office and save time on going for meals and drinks! It’s somewhat unprofessional to invite a client round to your family home for a meeting, therefore if you don’t have any office space you’ll inevitably be paying out for meals and drinks when you catch up with clients. It makes life a lot easier when you have office space – trust me!
You feel more productive when you have to actually get dressed for a day’s work! It’s too easy when you work from home to slip into a comfy pair of jogging bottoms and a t shirt. For me, I feel more ready to work when I’m dressed smart and leaving the house, even if I am sitting alone in an office!
There are more networking opportunities if like me you rent space in shared offices. I’ve even managed to gain a client from it! It’s great to share an office building with other professionals, we also regularly hold meetings which again is a great chance to get my business known.
For me working in an office space has increased my productivity and proved to be much more beneficial for my growing business. Not everyone will necessarily feel this works for them but for me it couldn’t be better!