Working from home is desirable to people in many walks of life, including students needing some extra cash and stay-at-home parents who want to work while caring for their children. Some professions have historically fostered a work-from-home environment, including startup business owners, contractors with sole proprietorships, writers, and artists. The Internet has made working at home easier for even more professionals because staffers can now network with their team via messenger, email, and video conferencing applications without having to step foot into the office. Read about the pros and the cons of working from home below.
 

Pros

There are many advantages when you work at home:
 
-You may have flexible working hours

-You can work your typical eight hour work day in increments instead of all at once

-You can often accommodate other family member’s schedules such as children’s school schedules

-Your employer may save money on office space

-You can work in comfortable clothes rather than business attire
 

Cons

 
Unfortunately, working at home also has its drawbacks:

-Working at home can have numerous distractions that reduce the quality of your work or prevent you from working altogether

-Working at home with kids can mean catering to their needs and being pulled away from your desk at home

-Some staffers may take advantage of flexible work schedules by not truly working their recommended weekly hours of work

-You may not have access to the best equipment when you work from home

-You may not be present enough at physical meetings or gatherings with your team, leaving gaps in communication
 
The people who succeed at working at home find a balance by creating a workspace and disciplining themselves to work a set amount of hours or until a project is completed. Learn how you can earn your MBA from home and online with the Georgia WebMBA at Georgia College here.
 

 
It seems like personal New Year’s resolutions are made with good intentions but are easily broken, as many people drop their goal of improving themselves within a few weeks of making the resolution. Small business owners often take a similar approach in January, re-examining their goals and determining new ways of reaching them. Goal setting in business is a proven method of succeeding no matter what type of business you are in. Taking a measured approach to goal setting and following up regularly will keep you on track to meet or exceed your goals. When you make resolutions for your small business this year, you should create an action plan for achieving them. Read how to develop and keep this action plan on track without breaking your resolutions.
 

Create SMART Goals

Resolutions or goals for a small business should be SMART goals. SMART goals are:
 
Specific

Measurable

Achievable

Realistic

Time-based
 
For example, you shouldn’t just say, “I want to earn three times as much in 2017,” without a plan to get there. Breaking down your goals into bite-sized steps makes them easier to achieve. Create goals that can be measured so that you can track your progress. Give yourself a time limit to achieve your goals such as by the end of the year. If you take the time to create SMART goals, you will have a much better chance of achieving them.
 

Tweaking Goals is Not Breaking Goals

Goals, while having an end point, can be changed, adapted, or tweaked. When setting goals at the onset of the year, you may not be aware of influences or events that will occur later on. These events may change the course of your plan because priorities have changed, suppliers have not delivered, or another product is in demand. If you are meeting to check your progress against your goals on a regular basis, you can monitor whether you need to tweak your goals or strive harder to reach them.
 

Focus is Key

Having a weekly meeting to discuss progress towards your business goals will refocus yourself and your team towards achieving your goals. This also gives everyone an opportunity to seek help on issues that are preventing progress. By keeping meetings short and discussing the successes and problems of each week, your entire team will be able to help each other complete tasks in order to achieve the team goals.

Georgia WebMBA at Georgia College can help you gain a competitive edge when it comes to accomplishing your goals. Learn more about the benefits of an MBA here.