Going somewhere? Running a home business is a fantastic option for working Military Spouses who would like to retain job security throughout multiple PCSs. However, the packing and unpacking of a business can be just as cumbersome as moving your living room furniture across state lines.
Just as you would pre-measure your couch, you can also rent the right-size U-Haul and, with a little (OK, maybe a lot of) planning, you can make moving your business a smooth process. You’ll need to consider the timing of your move, as well as if you’ll need to alert your customers of your move. Additionally, you should keep your “office” organized during the move and be ready to unpack it as soon as you can. Read on to get the how-to on making this big move a breeze.
1. Can your business survive the move? Of course, it can.
The benefit of having an at-home business is the ability to set up shop wherever you PCS. All it takes is a little organization. As soon as you get your orders to move, create a list of everything you’ll need to do to shift your business from one home to another, as well as a timeline of when to complete those tasks. At first, this will mean taking stock of all the projects you’re working on and determining what deadlines fall before, during, and after the move, so you can use your time wisely to wrap up projects or work ahead on others. Also, lay out a plan for monitoring any projects that will span your move so nothing falls through the cracks.
2. Keep your customers in the know… or not.
Your customers should be kept aware of any gaps or delays in service that will occur due to your move. If your business is local only, you should reach out to your customers far in advance of your move, so they can begin making alternative arrangements to receive the services you provide. If your business is online only, you’re cleared to give your customer’s shorter notice of the move or even no notice at all, just as long as you remain available and responsive to them. If you know that traveling and unpacking or even a lack of Wi-Fi or business tools is going to keep you from your customers, let them know of your absence and of the date they can expect you back online. Even though you may be separated from your work, your move is a great time to connect with your customers in other ways. Use social media to post updates of your travels and photos of your new place.
3. Packing up and making the move.
Organization is the name of the game when it comes to a successful move. Start by putting like things together — financial information and tools, projects and customers, etc. — and don’t put any non-business-related items in with them. Then label your boxes clearly so your “office” stays intact and is moved to the right room in your new house. Research the safest way to store and ship your items securely, and consider keeping any sensitive files close at hand. Once you get to your new house, begin unpacking as soon as you can, so you get set up shop and declare your business “open” again.
4. Setting up your new home office.
Moving into a new space provides the perfect opportunity to reconsider how you’d like your office to be set up. Perhaps you were just working at the kitchen table before, but now you have room for your very own desk and office chair. If your office décor was lacking (or, alternatively, distracting), zhoosh up your space so you feel comfortable and inspired. If you had to downgrade office space, now’s a good time to go through your things and purge the old and unnecessary. If you had a space upgrade, on the other hand, spread your wings by integrating new furniture and storage solutions into your office.
An at-home business move can seem intimidating, but it can be a piece of cake for a professional like you. All it takes is a positive attitude and a little organization to be back in business in no time.