April 7, 2017
Working from a home office has its pros and cons. Sure, it can help you significantly reduce your overhead costs, avoid stressful commutes, and make a positive impact on the environment. However, maintaining a professional atmosphere within your home office can be a challenge, especially if there are kids around. And with the summer months looming, now is the time to prep.
Other than being loud, unhygienic, and distracting, a child can be a hazard to the security of important documents and the condition of your home office equipment. But since you also need to keep a watchful eye on young children, you can’t just lock them out of the office and call it a day. Rather, you need to implement childproofing practices that will allow you to focus on your work while you keep them safe:
Don’t Use Glassware
First and foremost, be sure you keep all glassware away from the fidgety hands of children. In addition to preventing injuries, this will also prevent any spills on electronic devices and important documents.
A good rule to have is to only use plastic or paper cups when bringing drinks to your home office. And if your child is old enough, prohibit them from bringing drinks altogether.
Aside from spills, important documents must also be kept safe from scribbles. That’s why you should always have proper storage for paper files. Alternatively, you can also go paperless using cloud storage platforms like Google Drive.
Take note that going paperless will also lead to huge savings in the long run. The cost of paper alone may quickly add up over the course of a year. Lastly, resorting purely on digital documents is also a great way to save time and prevent amassing piles of paper in your office.
Keep Important Equipment Out of Reach
A major concern in letting children into your home office is the safety of important gadgets or appliances such as printers, laptops, and coffee makers. Toddlers, in particular, are extremely curious and will press any button they can get their hands on.
For organization, try to have a central location for all your important equipment. Just be sure it is somewhere high and well beyond your children’s reach.
Limit Their Internet Access
According to statistics, 56 percent of children between the age of 8 and 12 already own a smartphones. If you’re one of the parents who provide their kids with internet-enabled technology, make sure you have parental controls in place to moderate their internet access.
Remember that giving children too much freedom on the internet not only makes them vulnerable to inappropriate content, but they may also accidentally download malware and compromise your family’s privacy. For overall protection, you can use a parental control software like Norton Family Premier.
Keep Children Distracted
If you want your children to stay put whenever they’re in your office, make sure they are preoccupied with something productive. Give them their own “workstation” that has coloring books, toys, reading materials, and other things that will keep them distracted.
Since children like to imitate the adults around them, they might get in the way and type on your keyboard or use your phone, especially when you’re not looking. To avoid this, make sure their desk has a spare keyboard or old calculator they can play with.
Tape All Cords
Statistics show that over 63 percent of electrical injuries in children are caused by loose cables and extension cords. That’s a lot.
That said, consider taping cords in place and using zip ties to bundle them together. Doing so will also prevent you from accidentally losing your work in case your child manages to sneak behind your computer.
Read more about parent entrepreneurs here on Tech.Co
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