The word "office" may conjure images of dreary cubicles and fluorescent lighting, or, if you're lucky, a very funny TV show starring Woli Arole. But these days, an "office" usually means any environment to which people dedicate most of their business hours. I’ll be sharing very straight forward reasons why you should get an office space apart from your home in a couple of posts. So we head straight to the first reason with this one.
REASON 1: YOUR CLIENTS WANT TO COME TO YOU, AND THEY’RE NOT COMPLAINING.
Many entrepreneurs would usually point at one of a senior friend of mine (as I like to call them) as their motivation for choosing rather to have their office at home. Richard Branson, owner of Virgin group has his office and headquarters right “at home”. Wow… you mean one of the richest men in the world has his office at home? Yes. Richard Branson’s secretariat is right in his “home” at Necar Island located in the Caribbean, in the beautiful and unspoiled British Virgin Islands. Richard has been fond of working from home all his life. Richard would usually share how working from home reduces stress level for him and aid creativity since he doesn’t have to be forced into a straight Jacketed, compartmentalized kind of schedule and lifestyle. I also personally don’t recommend much of that for those in a very creative profession. I get most of my inspirations just getting up from the bed and mounting my table right beside my bed and begin to create and I can be there for the next 4 – 5 hours without even noticing. Such great opportunity would suffer a bit if I had to get up, dress up, and get in traffic in order to get to the office at a particular time by which time most of my creativity has escaped my head. However an office must be somewhere apart from home. Why is this? I’ll tell you.
Before we go further, let’s be clear on something. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having your office at home and then going out to meet your clients in their space or in a café as the case maybe. But you also must be willing to accept the fact that you have pegged yourself to a certain level that you would never grow out of. You need intelligent and serious clients, those who can make you rich, and they would want to come to you. They won’t take you seriously if you still have to hire a cafe or meeting space all the time just to meet with them. There’s no security in that. The clients you’ll get if at all would come from lower levels of the success cadre to enjoy what you have to offer but leave you there and move up to some bigger “brand” they feel more psychologically comfortable to submit to. What makes those brands bigger? Find out, they have a corporate organization housed in a place called office and have a typical business operation giving prospective clients the feel of seriousness, stability, progress and financial demeanor. There are some professional skill set that would still earn you the patronage of some great clients but let’s call that what it is, that’s just being a glorified contract staff or freelancer working on internal projects of the client’s company not your own company. And that’s OK.
When your brand is beginning to get the attention that you crave; you’ll have experienced your clients requesting to come to you. The major reason why it is becoming easier to work from home is due to the advancement in information communication technology. But the moment you begin to get to a level of intensive inbound operation and production of your goods/service as a result of demand that your brand awareness is generated for you, clients and vendors would begin to request coming to you. And you cannot decline; if you do, you’ll lose them. Another quick option would be to meet with them in a café or in a hired meeting space; this doesn’t help either because there is the expectation of them about you when they request to come, so you still lose them and worst still you spend more at the long run than if you just rented an office space of your own.
And in case, you still haven’t solved Richard Branson’s puzzle at this time, let me explain it in plain. What Richard calls home, The Necar Island is not a building of a single flat or a duplex, it’s an Island. For God’s sake an ISLAND, A WHOLE ISLAND, LIKE A CITY. So he can afford to have his family in a beautiful luxury and stroll down the aisle into another world where he gets to receive visitors and work with staff members without them interfering with the domestic rights of his family. So if you are already as rich as Richard, I’m wondering what you’re doing reading this.
The point is this, when your clients begin to request to see you and you don’t have an impressive place that speaks of the readiness of your brand for serious business, you’ll lose them, if not immediately, you’ll lose them with time. That’s why you need your own office space, to host your clients, especially when you are in a business that requires you to be constantly dealing with multiple clients who in return are interacting with the product or service you are selling to them. For many reasons, you don’t want them coming to your home but for many reasons also, they don’t want to be invited to a café or a hired meeting space for project that they know requires a corporate effort which can only be achieved in a work space and with a team dedicated for such purpose.
We are subletting office spaces in Lekki Phase 1, Ikeja and Surulere Lagos and also providing full time business support professionals at a most affordable price in case you fall into this category.
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Head, House of Shield