Five Tips for Running a Virtual Office in 2021
December 9, 2020 by Alexis Babiarz
Are you a forward-thinking entrepreneur whose business has come through 2020? If so, you’re probably looking for a way out of “WFH.” Working from home, while perk-filled, has its downsides, and millions of people have been finding out just what those are in the nine months since the pandemic hit.
The solution is a virtual office.
Below, we give the top five ways to effectively run your own.
Invest in a good website
Your website is typically the first bit of ‘you’ your clients and prospective clients will see. So if you plan to be successful, there’s no excuse for having a lousy one. Hire a solid web designer with whom you can work to determine your business’ needs and figure out the best site look and feel to meet your professional goals. Some great tips on hiring an affordable, high-quality web designer can be found here.
Work at your business address
It may be more convenient to work from home than in a professional setting (what commute?), and when you’re a small entrepreneur occasionally getting things done from your kitchen table is practically a requirement. But once you’ve got your virtual office up and running, resist the temptation to fall back into old habits. If you succeed and work at least a few days a week from a coworking space, you’ll find yourself more productive and your self-esteem — which can take a hit when you work from home — rising.
Meet at the office
When you have a face-to-face planned with a customer or potential customer, meeting at a local coffee shop or restaurant may seem like the easiest spot to hold it. But having a business meeting in a non-business environment may strike some people as unprofessional, losing you a client before you even get them. Instead, rent a private office at your coworking spot.
Here at Metro Offices, we offer private, lockable offices for rent — at nine locations in DC, Maryland, and Virginia.
Use a professional
Just as some people may be turned off by a business meeting at Starbucks, so, too, might certain prospects be discouraged from using your business if you answer your own phone. Use the receptionist and business-line services of your coworking spot so that your line is answered with your company name by a trained professional.
At Metro Offices, our customers’ lines are always answered by a receptionist during business hours. No exceptions. So even if your business is currently just you, a laptop, and some start-up capital, you’ll sound like a big company when someone calls.
You may be wary of networking these days, but there is a way to strike up in-person business conversations with strangers without sacrificing health and safety. At Metro Offices, we’ve installed shields at reception, reduced capacity in our shared work areas, and increased the space between seating. We also require mask-wearing at all times. So when you see an ‘in’ for a conversation between yourself and another coworker, why not use it? You may need to speak a bit louder to compensate for the additional distance and nose-and-mouth coverings, but that’s no reason to let potentially a lucrative relationship go unformed.
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