EXPERT TIPS FOR SETTING UP YOUR HOME OFFICE
experiences what works
and what doesn’t work
The laptop and everything else that is necessary is quickly set up at the kitchen table. This is not a solution for a long time. Since working from home seems to be a reality for many longer or more often than planned, we are happy to share what we have learned setting up working from home over the past few years:
After the light
Daylight in the home office is of great importance for the eyes and the mind. Wherever possible, the home office should have good daylight. This often means setting up a room or part of a room that has previously been used for other things as a home office. It is worth investing the most thought here and creatively going through all the situations in order to place the home office in the best possible place.
Even if a cute little worktop can be seen in many magazines, which has been attached to a wall or mounted on a shelf: Such a place is sufficient to write a thank you card. This tiny solution is useless for concentrated work over many hours.
Somewhere in the apartment, in the house or even in the garden house there will be a window situation that was previously used for other purposes. Creativity and radical clearing out are the order of the day here. There are other tips for radical clearing out here.
Naturally, daylight must be supplemented by artificial light in the darker seasons, as well as in the early morning and evening. Ideally, the light shouldn’t just shine from the ceiling, but be supplemented by suitable desk and floor lamps.
The window to the courtyard
Anyone who has worked in a home office for a long period of time has the experience: the window, along with all the electronic tools, suddenly becomes the connection to the rest of the world.
Regardless of whether the view from the window falls into the courtyard, a street, neighboring houses, a wall or a garden. It doesn’t (almost) matter. Because every sight is accompanied by noises, the change of light and the different weather conditions.
What used to be the walk to the coffee kitchen, where the view roams along the walk over the meeting points and the other workplaces, the familiar walk to the elevator or into the meeting room and much more, suddenly becomes the view out of the window.
And nothing is as good for the eyes as looking up from the screen from time to time and looking into the distance. Therefore, a strong plea from GloriousMe to think creatively and really without restrictions about which room situation could offer a view from the desk to a window and to rearrange it.
Just no closet
Working from home does not require less energy, strength and a positive attitude compared to working in an office. On the contrary — if you are used to meeting and exchanging ideas with colleagues, and not just about technical things, the rather solitary situation in the home office is a big change.
A closet in the basement or any other corner where you have put away what you have not yet parted with is no place to work efficiently and imaginatively.
Thoughts also need space, so get rid of everything that is still around the home office, including the old framed posters that you might have left over from the last move.
Only what you need to work and the most valuable picture, your favorite sculpture or the best plant belong in the home office. In contrast to the mobile workplace, which you are constantly changing and which cannot accommodate any personal objects, the home office, the place where you will spend many days, weeks or even months from now on, has the best of art or anything you have loved is just good enough.
The best is also expected from the results of your work. And even on the smallest desk, at least one single flower fits.
Little table stretch
The worktop in the home office should be dimensioned as large as possible. Laptops, desktops, telephones, but also one or the other piece of paper need space and it doesn’t hurt to have free space on the desktop.
Who doesn’t know juggling on desks that are much too small in hotel rooms whose owners have not realized that one often wants or has to work on one or the other professional project even on vacation.
A solid desk that doesn’t groan and squeak when writing a long e-mail is ideal. Until more normal times return, you can search antique portals for desks that are worthy of their name or other portals for height-adjustable tables that also allow you to work standing up. Until then is also an impromptu
Plate perfectly fine, but it should be big.
chair and chaise longue
Of course, sitting correctly is also important in the home office, but sometimes you have to improvise before the ergonomically best possible chair can find its place and seating preferences are very individual. We would therefore like to take this opportunity to talk about our experience with the second seat in the home office:
If there is enough space at home, a chaise longue should also be part of the long-term planning of the home office. A seat that allows a relaxed position for all those activities that do not require a keyboard.
Switching from the desk chair to an alternative seat for reading papers, journal books, magazines or newspapers and listening to podcasts is a luxury to be indulged in.
close the door
Our suggestion of a second seat in the home office may surprise home office beginners, because isn’t the rest of the apartment suitable for such activities? no
The transition from work to leisure and back again is often fluid. For many of us, however, concentrated work is associated with peace and quiet. For the home office, this means closing the door in a direct or indirect sense.
Reading technical texts requires a completely different level of attention than leafing through a food magazine with pleasure.
The door cannot always be closed and not everyone likes to work with headphones. It is therefore important for everyone who does not live alone to agree with everyone else in the household that the door (real or virtual) remains closed for the times when you want to work.
Always look in the rearview mirror
What the driving school teacher preached is relevant today for the home office. During a private, non-binding video call, it is worth testing the impression of the part of the home office that can be seen behind you and then considering whether that is really the image you want to convey?
The strongest argument is weaker if there is a bustling, bustling wall of shelves with small objects in the background, or if the background looks so gloomy as if you were working in the underground car park.
A little thought, a few moves, a change or addition to the light sources, for example with dimmable LED panels, and you’ll appear as smart on the conference call as your profile on XING or LinkedIn. You are smartly dressed in the home office anyway.
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