A private working space is a necessity these days, and everyone needs a work area to focus on and not get distracted by other things.
With numerous zoom meetings and live sessions, you must have a space of your own that has an excellent aesthetic background and that you appear professional at all times.
Who would want to leave a wrong impression on their colleagues and boss? If you and your roommate/partner are thinking of turning one of your rooms into a home office, here are a few things you need to consider.
How Many People Can Work in a Home Office?
Although it depends on space availability, the ideal number is two. When two people share one home office, it becomes easy to divide the room. You can have shared responsibilities like cleaning and making coffee, etc. It will help you get into the workplace mindset.
Most importantly, there are no taking sides of someone if there are only two people in the room, and thus conflicts rarely arise. There are fewer misunderstandings, and you are both left to your own devices. It is a very one-on-one transaction in all ways.
Many people who live in metro cities share a flat with others. If you are four people, you can divide yourself into two couples and work accordingly.
It would be best to consider your specific jobs. Think over who requires what kind of space. If the other person is an artist/painter, they may set up their workstation in the living room or their bedroom to focus on it.
If you have a proper desk job that requires you to sit at the desk for long hours, it might be appropriate to have the office in one corner of the house so that you are not easily bothered.
How to Furnish Home Office for Two
If you plan to convert a portion of your place into a home office for two, here are some tips. Follow these, and you can make the most out of your limited space available.
Remember that the purpose of a home office is practicality and ease of function. Plan out your furniture placement in a way that will not hinder either of your movements. It should also leave enough space for movement for both people at once.
Come to a Middle Ground
Find common ground between you and your co-worker’s style. If one of you likes loud colors while the other can only focus in muted spaces, you can keep the entire room plain but have elements of colors popping up, and they can have more loud aspects on their side of the room.
Desk and Chairs
You can invest in one large desk which you can divide up, or push two desks to two different corners of the room. Make sure there is enough leg space under the desk for you both.
If one of you is a fidgeter or working with someone up close is not something you are comfortable with, then it is recommended that you stick to your sides of the room.
Invest in comfortable chairs. It is advised that you buy the more oversized furniture of the same kind and work around them to make them suit your style. It will give your home office a uniform look and make it more formal.
If one side has a window, make it a common area. You can invest in a shelf and table for this area to keep documents, food and other things. Make sure there is a shared space to eat and discuss things.
To make the office area look comfortable, you can buy a nice patterned rug so that you can sit and relax when you are both on a break. Buy a few cool trinkets like paintings, sculptures, etc.
Lighting and Power Source
Make sure the lighting is uniform and not too harsh. Also, buy individual lamps for your tables.
Make a note of the source of power. Both of you should have a power outlet near you to support your computer and other gadgets. You can also shift your wifi router in the home office to be faster.
Another essential thing to remember is that you don’t have to buy everything brand new. Pool in some money and buy second-hand furniture. It is suitable for your pockets. You can go out together to choose these pieces so that neither is left dissatisfied nor unhappy.
Tips to Avoid Disturbing/Distracting Each Other
If you work simultaneously and share camaraderie, it is easy to get distracted. Sometimes you may not mean it, but you may end up not working and have your co-worker not work too.
Here are some ways you can avoid that from happening.
Sit back to back. This way, you will be focused on your screen and the work in front of you. However, if you cannot do this, you can also invest in a curtain that separates your places during work time.
If it is getting tough to focus on things or you are easily distracted by movement around you, invest in a curtain and hang it in the middle to divide up your place.
Make a routine and follow it. You two may not have the same work hours to follow, so come up with an arrangement. This way you will not bother them while working and vice versa.
Plan things in advance. If you have a meeting and need the office yourself, let them know in advance.
Split up responsibilities and make lists wherever needed. Alternate days so that no one is stuck with the same tasks can lead to boredom and frustration.
Time your breaks so that they are together. You can eat together and air out your frustrations about work; this will only increase your bonding.
Assess your priorities and deadlines. It would be best to have healthy means of communication so that neither is left frustrated nor feels like they are being taken advantage of.
If you have pets, make sure you take turns taking care of them.
If you are cooking something, go ahead and ask them if they want to eat. It is how you care and assure the person that it is all good between you two.
Also, maintain general courtesy and get out of the room if you have to attend calls that don’t require you to use your screen while talking. Do not play music out loud without asking them for permission first. Keep your area clean and do not take up more space than what is allotted to you.
How Big Should Home Office For Two Be
If you are both working part-time, it can be the size of an average bedroom. If large enough, you can also set up a workstation in your living room.
And if you are working full time, consider turning a spare room into a proper office with all the resources needed. It also depends on your field of work.
You should also make your office the space where you read, study, and do other things. So you can turn one of its corners into a library-cum-study if you are out of room in your house.
You should consider the size of your computer, workstation, furniture, and other things while planning out the layout.
Cluttered office spaces are not ideal, and if you do not have enough room for movement, you will be left stuck in places. Here are some things you should consider:
Get rid of things in your house that are not needed. It can include a dress nobody uses, spare tables/furniture pieces. When you get rid of wasteful things, you will be left with functional space.
Invest in furniture pieces that are size appropriate.
Layer your things. Use wall shelves and cupboards. Get tables/desks which have drawers and lockers.
The pandemic has made everything virtual, but we still need to tackle the physical space problem in our houses. If you live with many people, but only two of you need the workspace area, then it is advised that you talk it through with them.
It is not easy to navigate a small space with many people present. Ensure that your office is in the corner of the office, tucked away from the noise. Inform people of your schedule so that they do not bother you.
Not all of us can afford private home offices and bedrooms and personal spaces, all at once. You must be respectful of each other’s personal space. With the state of the world, we must be kind and understanding.
Sometimes you may have to make some adjustments, but it can also be the other way around. So we recommend that you maintain healthy dynamics with your co-worker in the home.
Anthony Laird is an interior designer and decorator with many years of experience. He is passionate about helping people make the most of their living space. Leveraging his many years of experience, Anthony Laird teaches people how to create the most inspiring interior spaces. With the increasing rate of home offices across the world, Anthony Laird now uses LichtenCraig to help more people design home offices that suit their personality and increase productivity.