Want to Run Your Event Planning Business From Home? Here’s How!
Regina Young is the owner and creative director of Meant2Be events, a top Arizona wedding planning firm that manages over 250 weddings a year.
There is something truly magical about knowing you can work anywhere. From the very beginning, I never wanted to have a formal office. Even 10 years later, that’s still one of my favorite perks of owning my own event planning business. I remember sitting and overlooking the ocean in Maui from my bungalow while booking a new contract, thinking how lucky I was to be enjoying such a serene view while generating a six-figure income. But the truth of the matter is, it’s not luck: it’s hard work and strategy.
The good stuff… and the bad
Whether you are a seasoned pro like me or just starting out, you may be choosing to run your business out of your home. Working from home has plenty of perks. You have a two-second commute, more flexibility, and fewer distractions. But, for many, the increased freedom of working from home can also be demotivating. Without a “boss” around, it can be easy to spend too much time relaxing with a coffee or snack. And while having quiet can be good for your productivity, the solitude can also be isolating and draining.
The reality is, I might be addicted to my yoga pants! My employees joke about our summer “office days” that are spent lounging in the pool, brainstorming marketing ideas, or networking strategies while we wait for our lunch delivery. Now, I wouldn’t recommend starting off your business journey with such a lackadaisical approach. It’s taken me a long, long time to develop enough strategies to maintain a great day-to-day business culture while staying productive at home.
Making it work
When I first started out, I was a lot better about making my home office environment formal. I would set an alarm to get up every day, get dressed, and head into work (down the hall).
For those of you starting this newfound freedom, there are some great ways to get some discipline in your practice. Here’s how I suggest getting started:
1. Set an alarm.
Getting up at the same time every day is good for your health, too (so they say!).
2. Get dressed.
Ok, not like “meeting a client” dressed, but you know, brush your teeth. Feeling good about your appearance will make you more confident in your efforts throughout the day.
3. Take a scheduled lunch break.
Yes, even at home, you deserve a break. Preferably out of the house. This is not the time to do laundry or start dinner.
4. Make sure to clock out.
While it’s certainly easy to get distracted and NOT work at home, it’s just as easy to never STOP working!
5. Create an office space.
I have mastered the art of working from my bed, even though I have an office in the house, but this is not a healthy habit to start! You really should have a space that is strictly for work and work only!
6. Take a day off.
Yes, you deserve it even when you work from home.
7. Have different mediums to communicate.
Often we use our cell phones for a home line and a work line. I get it, I haven’t had a landline in 15 years. But I also have a Google number that is my office line. I can choose to have it forward to my number or to my employees’ numbers when needed.
These are the tricks that helped me to work effectively from home and create a lucrative business. It was only after years of practice that I let up on the reins. But the most important thing is to find a system and process that works for you!