4 Steps Towards a Successful Home-Business


Do you ever feel that people don't take your business seriously because you run it from home? This can crush your morale, especially if you are just starting out. But of course working-from-home doesn't mean unprofessional. Especially if you follow these tips and tricks I'm going to share in this post!

Have Specified Working Hours
While running a home-based business gives you the freedom to work at whichever time you want. You should try to give yourself some structured working hours - especially if your business means you have a customer base that need to be in contact with you.

You should come up with specific working times, which you should clearly describe on your website. Your customers will know the hours in which they can place orders or ask questions (even if the answers aren't completely instant). By having specific working hours you create a sense of professionalism, and it also helps you to create a good work / home balance for yourself as well.

Have a Work Station
Having a specific room or area in your home dedicated to your work is a great idea, not only to maintain a healthy work / home balance, but also to make your business appear more professional. Keep the area as clear and clean as possible to keep you motivated too. One of the best flooring styles you can use is an engineered wood floor accomplished by Flooring365, which makes the room you are using look presentable.

Invest in the Right Equipment
Having the right equipment needed to run your business is equally as important. You don't necessarily need the most high-tech, expensive items. But it is a good idea to shop around and find the right products for you. If you spend a lot of time at the computer, then a supportive computer chair is a must for example. 

Put the Needs of the Customers First
There is a famous saying in business that says, 'the customer is always right.' This applies even in a home-based business where you should give priority to the needs of your customers. If a client orders for a certain product or service, you should ensure it is delivered on time without delays. A happy customer will keep coming back, and hopefully they'll bring their friends too!

This is a collaborative post.

Helping your Child with their Balance + Coordination


Balance is something a lot of us adults take for granted. From going down the stairs, to even just sitting at the table, balance plays a key role in a lot of day-to-day activities. For children though, balance is something they need to master as they develop. This is why it’s important that they’re involved in activities that help encourage coordination and balance from a young age. With that in mind, here are some of the top activities that can help teach your child the skills they need.

When you’re submerged in water, you have to learn how to work against the resistance of the water, while also using it to your advantage. Understanding how your body works differently in water is key to developing new coordination and balance skills, and it also helps your child begin to develop spatial awareness.

Cycling and Roller Skating
We all remember that feeling of riding our first bike - it’s terrifying but such an exciting feeling once you master it. Riding a bike or whizzing around in a pair of roller boots is all about learning how to position your body, so you maintain your balance. And although quite daunting initially, it’s the perfect way to help your children get used to using their posture to stay coordinated.

Playground Games
Climbing ladders, swinging on ropes and walking across suspended bridges all require a lot of concentration and agility. When things move unexpectedly (such as the swing bridge moving suddenly), it requires a lot of core strength to regain control over our bodies. So even though jungle gyms and playgrounds just seem like great fun to children, they’re actually teaching them valuable skills while training their core.

Simple playground games such as hopscotch and stepping stones are also brilliant for coordination. Hopscotch requires the rapid and frequent change in movements, while stepping stones mean leaping certain distances. All of these challenge your child’s coordination and balance.

What if your Child is Still Struggling?
While it’s inevitable that your child may fall over on occasions, or lose control of their bike while riding, there are some other key signs that your child may need help with their balance and coordination.

These include:

* Frequently falling or tripping (and being unable to rebalance themselves quickly).
* Lacking fluid movements so they look more robotic.
* Refraining from joining in with physical activities.
* Being late to start walking or crawling, or other more physical activities.
* Having trouble in certain environments, such as uneven ground or steps.
* Struggling to get dressed standing up.

In cases such as these or if you're particularly worried, you should seek the advice of your doctor. It may be something that can be helped with a bit of support, for example an ear infection that is affecting their balance. Check out Auris Ear Care who might have some advice for this. 

This is a collaborative post.

4 Ways to Make your Business More Professional

If you are a new business then you'll understand that the competition for new clients is fierce. You're effectively competing against others in your industry, businesses with perhaps years worth of experience and brand recognition behind them. And with this kind of competition, it's difficult to know how you can stand out. Customers are more likely to select a company over its competitors when they appear professional and highly experienced. Which means, everything from your logo to your company message, branding and even the look of your emails will be scrutinised, and if you don't have the right look, then you're likely to miss out on those crucial orders and enquiries.

Boosting your professionalism is a simple yet effective way of reassuring potential customers to consider your company over your competitors. But you may be wondering how this is achievable. So I thought I would share some easy and effective ways to help you make your business appear (and hopefully be) more professional. 

Invoicing and Accounts
Getting that first sale is one thing, but holding onto that customer so they'll return again and again, is probably even more important. Having a streamlined payment process is a simple yet highly effective way to remind your clients that you're professional in everything you do. Stripe accounting integrations from freshbooks.com provides you with an easy to use, efficient way of receiving payments. Not only is this method secure but it also stores all the necessary details to speed up the process each time. This effortlessly highlights your professionalism and emphasises how straightforward working with you is! 

Set up a P.O Box
Having business mail or correspondence sent to your home address looks incredibly unprofessional. It sends out the wrong message, especially if a potential client is considering you for a large order or project. Setting up a P.O Box instantly adds some professionalism and makes your company look much more organised and reliable. A P.O Box is also a good idea from a security point of view, as it means you won't have to give out your personal address to anyone either.

Business Cards
While some may consider business cards to be a little old fashioned, they still have a place within modern business. Having a store of business cards in your pocket means you have access to an instant marketing tool, no matter where you are. Whether you're networking at an event, or you come across a potential employee who may be the perfect fit, handing over a business card is a much more personal and professional way to seal an interaction. Rather than asking someone to 'look you up on LinkedIn'.

Look the Part
Running your own business means you don't have to conform to stuffy office attire rules. However, that shouldn't mean you're working in your pj's all day, as looking the part is essential for any face-to-face interaction (whether it's in person or via video call). Even if that means looking business ready on top and comfy on the bottom for video calls, make sure you look ready and excited for the client - pjs and a mum bun can look like you're uninterested! Keep the background clear for these types of conversations too.

This is a collaborative post.