I read a post on Facebook recently that said to have a million dollar business you should have a workspace that reflects your goals. I suppose this is a bit like people who say you have to dress for success at work in order to be successful.
I’m not going to sugar-coat it: I think this is a load of rubbish.
If you have a good business idea that can somehow change people’s lives and you are prepared to work harder than you’ve ever worked before in order to make it a success, then it doesn’t matter where you are or what you look like.
In the early days of my business, I worked from our kitchen table, from the sofa in amongst my toddlers’ debris and from the dressing table next to my bed. I ran my live webinars from our freezing cold spider-infested shed (they were HUGE 🕷), wrapped in blankets and wearing snow boots that weren’t visible on camera.
I worked from my phone, I worked in the car, I worked at toddler playgroups, I worked on the school run, I worked from multiple tents on holiday.
I used to go round to my friends’ houses for playdates with my toddler and baby while I’d programmed PayPal to flash up on my phone every time we made a sale, so that I could manage the sale manually from my phone. I remember one memorable playdate when I earned £800 in 2 hours and I wanted to shout from the rooftops about my success.
In fact, we had one holiday in France where my partner had to make sure that every single campsite we visited offered WiFi. I had assured him that August wouldn’t be a busy month so everything would be fine. As it turns out, it was our best month of the year and I had to work constantly throughout our holiday as the sales poured in.
I remember putting our toddlers to bed every night in the tent on various campsites and then going on a trek in the dark to find a decent WiFi spot to handle all the incoming sales. I sat on benches, I sat on the beach, I sat next to the car, I sat under trees, I desperately scouted around for a signal – all while I was managing incoming customer support enquiries and sales issues.
I made it work because I had to.
That’s what it means to be an entrepreneur. You make it work, because you have no other choice. If you spend time thinking about how your surroundings need to be perfected, you instantly take your eye off the ball and lose focus on your work.
I also don’t think you need to worry about what you look like. As soon as I started my own business, I banished my traditional work wardrobe and shelved the suits that I’d been wearing for years. After all, I was calling the shots so I didn’t have to dress to please anyone else anymore. I can wear whatever I like to meetings, because I’m charge.
Nowadays I often work in my pyjamas, in a onesie or in anything that makes me feel comfortable enough to keep going. When I go to meetings, I wear what I feel comfortable in and feel like wearing that day, rather than what I think someone else expects me to wear.
The beauty of being in charge means that you call the shots. Don’t ever forget that.
Do you need a fancy office or wardrobe to run a successful online business from home? You do not.