Name: Iftikhar Hussain Location: Edinburgh...
More people than ever in the UK are choosing to work from home. This business model suits many - but before you decide to opt for a home-based franchise, it's essential to weigh up the pros and cons. For example, on the plus:
1. Flexibility - home-based franchises offer a lot of this. You can work in your comfy clothes, at unsociable hours, or times that suit. You can listen to music and break for refreshments when you want. However, discipline and structure are key to making this arrangement work, so establish a good routine, work to a schedule - and stay motivated and focused.
2 Improved health - with a home-based franchise, you can build in time for a morning swim, lunchtime run or evening walk - so you aren't sitting all day at your desk. You can eat healthy home cooked foods and avoid the lure of the local fast food restaurant!
3. No need for expensive work clothing - most offices have dress codes, but with home-based businesses, you can dress as you wish. Avoid wearing PJs if you want to be productive however - getting properly dressed indicates to yourself that you're in working mode.
4. Time for your family - you can be more available when working at home with a home-based franchise. You can cook and eat with your kids and talk to your partner on breaks. But make sure your family respects your home working space and lets you get on with your business uninterrupted!
So what about the negatives?
1. Loneliness - if you thrive on camaraderie with colleagues and social interactions, then you might struggle with working at home, alone. You can mitigate this by engaging with the franchisee network or other business homeworker network groups however.
2. Days can feel monotonous - so you'll need to schedule time away from your working space, and ideally eat meals in another room or location.
3. Dedicated work spaces are needed - using a dining table won't feel like an office. Create an office space that you can leave at the end of your working day.
If you're looking at a home-based opportunity, be honest about yourself and your personality / working preferences. Alternatives with stronger structures and a team in place are another option. But if you do think carefully and believe that home-based franchises would suit you, then pat yourself on the back for jumping the first decision hurdle!