Working from home brings many benefits. No commute. No dress code. No office politics. But every once in a while you need to meet clients. Skype calls, emails, Slack and other digital technology can delay this eventuality; but there will always be one or two clients who want a face-to-face.
That’s okay if they suggest meeting at their office, but what if they propose coming to you? If your clients know that you work from home you may be happy to host a meeting at your house. But if they don’t (many people keep it to themselves) or if your home isn’t really suitable for a business meeting, where should you meet?
Here are a few ideas:
Client meetings in business lounges
A local hotel, conference venue or even sports centre (like David Lloyd) may have a business lounge that you can use. You’ll have to share it with other users so it may not be suitable if you need to discuss very confidential or sensitive information, or to conduct a presentation, but for many meetings business lounges are a good option.
In recent years lots of coworking spaces have sprung up in our cities and towns, often offering an alternative to corporate meeting rooms, serviced offices and the traditional business lounge. Coworking spaces like SiGNAL here in Bordon also have a variety of spaces that can be hired by the hour for private meetings.
Coffee shops and restaurants
If privacy is not an issue and your client doesn’t mind the informality of a coffee shop, there are plenty of those to choose from. Acoustics aren’t always great for 1-2-1 conversations so you might want to choose your venue and meeting time carefully to avoid a crowded and noisy café. Restaurants outside of lunch and evening service are also a good choice, and you can always treat your client to a meal too.
Most serviced offices like the Regus Group also hire meeting rooms on an ad hoc basis. These will have all the facilities you would expect from a corporate office hire company, but can be soulless places. This may be appropriate if your clients are from the corporate world, although they may prefer the opportunity to go somewhere more hip like a coworking space for a change!
A friend’s office
Look to your local business network and see whether anyone you know has an office you could use for a couple of hours. Someone might have a boardroom or other meeting room that’s often empty, or would give up their personal office while they’re out.
Local parks and green spaces
Walking meetings are all the rage and as long as the weather holds they are perfect for meeting clients. Research suggests that walking leads to more creative thinking and can be a lot more productive than sitting down. In and around Bordon we have some fantastic green spaces like the newly restored Hogmoor Inclosure that are perfect for a ‘walk and talk’.
Where do you meet clients if you work from home? We would love to hear your suggestions of venues in and around Bordon so we can share with our business community. Of course, we hope you’d consider coming to SiGNAL, get in touch if you would like a tour…