I have worked from home since the start of CIMA IT Solutions in 2008. Prior to that my office was also my home because while working for American Systems in DC while living in Puerto Rico. The only time I physically entered the office was for New Hire Orientation!
Working from home has its pro’s and cons but after 4 years I have to say the benefits outweigh the disadvantages.
If I had a large team I would have a separate space for my office. When you pay for an office that expense is included in your operational costs.
Operating from an office at home allows me to keep my business running in a lean way. These cost savings I transfer to my clients by giving them the best possible resources and quality service without having to charge them a dime to cover extra expenses.
No Office makes me lose Local Business
On occasions I lose business locally because they can’t see my physical office. Living in Puerto Rico where people are tied to traditions, this can turn into an obstacle.
When I bump into a business focusing more on my physical address than how I can solve their problems it makes me lose interesting in working with them. If they are looking for someone with a high-end office, filled with priceless artwork, expensive furniture, and plenty of office space, hiring me might not be what they are looking for.
The Irony in these companies seeking a physical address is that many of these companies are throwing away money on material things but when it comes to paying for quality resources and good services they quickly tend to ask for discounts and quickly mention they have small budgets.
For me it is extremely difficult to walk into a place where they spent millions in infrastructure (some unnecessary) and then complain when they see a proposal of thousands of dollars for a website (completely necessary).
Those Who Penny Pinch and Waste your Time
A while back I was in a meeting where people wasted my time and the time of others. What really bothered me other than they where always late was that they made a comment on my physical presence and how a competitor was not working out of a garage office like I was. Being that many large companies HP, Google, Apple, and others started out of a garage I had to disagree with them.
They are spending millions of dollars on new infrastructure that won’t necessarily bring them new clients or enhance the current customer experience but they can’t stop complaining about cash flow issues.
In my case I maintain my cash flow issues in check by looking for intelligent ways to cut back and including not having to pay for an extra office.
Working from home at the moment has help me connect with great people I truly want to work with because they are focused on meeting goals and how we can work together in the most organic ways.
Do you work from home? If you do what experiences have you encountered?
If you don’t would you give it a try if you had a chance?