If you recently started in your new Direct Selling or Party Plan business you may feel motivated to get started. While you wait for your starter package to arrive we suggest a you do a few things to prepare your home office and fully launch your business.
First, for IRS purposes, it is best if you have a full room with a door for your office. It is not required but it does usually work out the best. Consult a tax professional for your situation to verify the tax deductions you qualify for. Now let’s look at some things you should do to prepare your home office for business. In this article we will look at, soundproofing, decorating, and party planning.
Sound is probably the one thing that will affect your customers as you make calls each day. When you start to prepare your office, consider the element of noise. You will want to be using your phone to create business opportunities and sound can distract you from the task at hand. A wise investment may be a carpet and hanging soundproof panels if it is a large space with echo.
Sound Proofing with fabric art panels.
Sound Proofing your walls.
Sound Proofing your door.
Sound Proofing your windows.
Decorating your office
Decorating an office can be inspiring or overwhelming. I suggest starting out simple and adding one or two ideas per month. I had a friend who had two desks in her office. After visiting her office a few times I realized that each month she chose a new color to decorate items on her second desk. When I asked her about it she said that she was motivated by colors but what inspired her was always changing. Since that time, I always have my color desk as well.
Many blogs, YouTube videos, and Pinterest posts will inspire you but may cause you to think to purchase new items. Consider using or borrowing items from other rooms in your house. This will save you money that you can use in the meantime to promote and advertise your new business. If you are a minimalist, choose cabinets with doors, and boxes with lids to organize things. If you are a visual reference person like I am, focus on open shelves and cabinets with an option that simplifies the space. One such example could be a curtain to hide them away when you need to remove distractions.
Getting your supplies ready
When you are preparing for a party, you will thank yourself for a well organized inventory. Your organization needs will vary depending on the types of products that you sell. If you need product specific tips, try searching for blog posts and videos from distributors with your organization, or distributors selling similar types of products.
I found this video of Michelle Cunningham, a Mary Kay representative, showing off her super organized Mary Kay products (YouTube, 2015). In addition to product organization her system deals with peripherals like managing receipts and organizing bags. I also found an informative video created by an independent representative of another fun direct selling opportunity, Jamberry. Her video is packed with recommendations about her hostess packets, product, catalogs, and how she organizes her office.
Planning your demonstrations and parties
If you plan on doing a lot of events, I recommend having two “ready to party” bags. I always look for bags with wheels at discount stores, yard sales, or major retail outlets. I suggest keeping one in each car and one in your home office. Replenish them with your 10 favorite items including lead forms, table decor, product displays, and containers for drawings and such. I also like to include a game or two in each bag. If you feel prepared to give a demonstration or a last minute party, you will typically find more opportunities to do business with your contacts.
Sometimes it’s helpful to think about and list your top activities each week and then let those activities influence how your office is set up. For me I do not print a lot. My printer is under a table and close to the floor. How ever i often switch between multiple screens, so having a table that is long enough and deep enough for dual monitors is important. Whatever your set up, make sure that it works for you, and tweak it over time as you settle in to the flow of your working style.
When you’re done, give yourself a pat on the pack and an “A” for effort. Your investment in getting an organized and business-ready office will save you time and help you grow your business with less stress and more efficiency.