Setting up a home office in Nigeria is not something entirely new to Nigerians. Especially this era where freelancing has become the order of the day. Many Nigerians, particularly the youths, are now involved in different kinds of online businesses where they do not need to contact their clients physically.
This means Nigerians are not by any means new to the concept of a home office. However, only a few have taken up the responsibility of giving their home working space some elegant look and making it comfier.
For some reason, I believe in a friendly working environment, as it enhances my productivity and gives me a reason to do more. And contrary to what many people think of a great home office, at times, basic things count more.
There are so many home office ideas to recreate, but in this article, I will be walking you through the most essential tools you need for your home office in Nigeria and also give you some quick tips on where you can go about it in getting yourself one or two.
Why do you need a home office in Nigeria?
There are many reasons a Nigerian will need a home office. This can be as a result of new development from your place of work. I mean, many businesses now encourage their staff to work from home.
Also, many Nigerians are now heavily into the freelancing business. And while a freelancer does not really need to get a unique working apartment, they can do well with what we call the home office.
That is, setting up a mini working space in your apartment to take care of your productive activities. This will help such freelancers to have more productive days and also feel more comfortable at work.
10 most essential tools you need for your home office in Nigeria
When it some to set your home office in Nigeria, the first thing that comes to mind is space. Like where am I going to put the table and chair? Isn’t this room too small for a big desk? Do I have to rent an extra room to give myself more space? Or am I supposed to go to another apartment to make enough provisions for my office space?
Yes, all these questions you ask yourself are essential, and if you have the luxury of providing fast solutions, it is excellent. However, if you do not, that shouldn’t put an end to your home office dream. Remember Jeff Bezos, the second richest man on earth, started his giant company, Amazon, in his garage.
Perhaps you have a space that could have been serving for some other roles in your house. You can consider giving it some extra thought; maybe it will work—for example, your kitchen or store. My friend, who lives in a self-con apartment, uses his kitchen as his office space in Nigeria. At the same time, another friend who lives in a two-bedroom flat with his family managed to convert his balcony to his home office.
I also stay in a medium self-con, and as the time of writing this article, I have my ergonomic chair and table and my other home office tools in my single room self-con.
You can consider other possible spaces for your home office: your bedroom, sitting room, dining, kitchen, balcony, garden, store, etc.
Table and Chair
After making provisions for where you want to use your office space, the next thing in line would be your Chair and Desk. There is nothing in line home office in Nigeria or home working space if you do not have your comfortable table and chair in place.
You can settle for a plastic or wooden student table. For some reason, I will strongly advise you to go for furniture as it is more studied and comfortable. You can get a good mini-office table at about N10,000 or N15,000. And if you are financially buoyant, you can go for those of N35,000 or more.
I will strongly advise you to go for an ergonomic chair for the chair, even if it will cost you to burn out your savings, chuck. You can settle for average ones of N25,000. Or try out Jiji for used ones. If you are financially okay or richer than an average Nigerian, investing N50,000 or N75,000 or even more on an ergonomic chair shouldn’t be a big deal for you.
Trust me; it is more the investment as you will be spending most of your time on it. And the safety of your back and hands matters.
I prefer mesh because it is more suitable for working. However, many people hold the opinion that leather ones are more comfortable. You can take a few minutes to where you want to get the chair and feel the ones there yourself to get the feelings.
By investing the chuck of your savings, I am not saying you should spend all your money on a chair. And I do not mean you should overwork yourself. I am just saying any amount spent on a good chair based on your pocket will always worth it.
Good lighting comes in handy when it comes to creating your home office in Nigeria. It should be one of the five things you should give primary consideration. By talking of good lightning, I am referring to both natural light and artificial ones. Naturally light in terms of the sunray and arterial light in terms of your electric bulb.
You can easily get a good sun ray if you place your home office desk some hunches close to your window or a place where sun rays can easily shed in. This helps you reduce echoes and shadows.
And for the electric light, try and get some cool white soft bulbs either by the ceiling or at the side of your room. I recently move my home office chair and table closer to my kitchen because; Firstly, I get to enjoy a natural ray of light that shed in from my kitchen. Secondly, I don’t like my bulb light to be reflecting directly to my computer screen when working. I prefer to have it somewhere behind me. This might not apply to everyone. But if you are the type that makes lighting a priority like me, I will strongly advise you to give this some consideration.
Also, I don’t always work with natural light, especially during the day, because my room is airconditioned, and I need to keep it close. Plus, I love the setup of my lighting already.
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Some touches of yellow or blue wall socket bulb will not be bad at all. But ensure they do not overwhelm the room.
Air conditioner or fan
Having a good air conditioner or fan is not something you can afford to do without setting your home office. Nigeria is naturally hot; keeping yourself inside heavy heat will not help your productivity.
Try to get a good air conditioner, maybe 1 or 1.5 horsepower, to give your home office a comfortable ambiance. An AC’s cost ranges from 100k to 150,000, which doesn’t seem too much for the comfort you will enjoy. Plus, it is your home; you get to enjoy it for your everyday actives, down to when you go to bed.
Meanwhile, if you are just starting out and are terribly on a low budget, it is okay if you settle for either a ceiling fan or standing fan, depending on how you like it. If you are going for a ceiling fan, try and go for the giant ones. I think they cost just N5,000 or so. Meanwhile, if you are going for the standing fan, I don’t think the size really matters. Another room conditional you can get a trial is the home cooler Fan and the likes.
Get a generator set
I hate to say this; it is scaly hard to enjoy a good life in Nigeria without having a generator. This saddens me because I am not a fan of generators at all. I am an “anti” against it. If you are fortunate to have a good and stable power supply in your environment, then this might not be your headache.
However, if you happen to reside in an area with an epileptic power supply, just like most places in the county, then getting a good generator set might be a must for you. Well, not a must! Just a reasonable consideration.
If you use AC, you will need to consider this when choosing the type of generator you will buy. A generator of 25 Kw should power your home office space AC. And if you do not use AC, you should go for the medium size except you have a large house to power or another essential home electrical equipment.
The remaining 5 are not of extreme importance, but they will help.
Wall colour and décor
As I said in the introduction of this article, basic things go a long way in enhancing your work productivity. And if I am right, the primary reasons for setting up a home office is to create a more comfortable working environment and boost your productivity. Your wall colour and décor have a role to play here.
Give your room a cool and sweet colour. If you are a content creator and often create videos, you can try and give your home office a little brighter colour with some exciting arts. And on the other hand, if you are the type that doesn’t have to make any snapshot or whatsoever of y0ur home office, using a cool colour like white or grey will be fantastic. Also, try and hang some arts on your walls. You can as well make use of the wall poster people are using these days.
Whichever one you settle for, ensure you keep it somewhat cool.
Set up a sound system
Music plays a vital role in our everyday life, including that of our area of productivity. Some simple music flow or even bass can be what you need to complete that lagging project.
Since it is an office space, you have a good number of options you can settle for. You can decide to get a home theatre or deck to give your entire house the feeling of ginger. Or get yourself an iPod or headset to provide you with hearing some good sound. A simple earpiece with good sound will also do the magic.
The following few items on this list will work more for those who are used to the conventional office environment and probably just giving the home office some trial. It is normal if you feel lost at first. However, you will love it more, working from the comfort of your house. Just like I do. Winks.
Place a whiteboard
Placing a whiteboard in your home office space can play different roles depending on how you want it. You can use it as your pinboard where you post your fast thoughts. Or jot down some idea you need to process.
Get an office cabinet
Cabinet can be an essential part of home office in Nigeria equipment for those involved in many paper works. If y0u line of business deals with extensive bookkeeping, getting a mini cabinet will go a long way in keeping your documents safe and clean.
If your work does not need extensive paperwork, you can do well with the shelf that comes with your home office table. And in case it does not work, make a little effort to call a carpenter to help you fix it.
A stopwatch or count watch
Most people who are used to regular office setup often find it challenging to keep up with their home productivity. Generally, regular office space has a way of keeping you focused at work. This is either because you have your colleagues around, or you know you have your work supervisor on your neck.
This is often the contrary in a home office in Nigeria. To eliminate this problem, try and get a stopwatch to serve as your monitor. Set a deadline along with a notification to ensure you keep up with the work you have at hand.
So far, a stopwatch is relatively cheap compare to other things on this list. You can still find a quick replacement for it. As in your mobile phone. But don’t you think your phone will be busier with other things?
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The culture of working from home is not something new in Nigeria. However, only a few people have been conscious enough to give their working space some special attention to enhance their productivity and comfortability. And that is what I hope I have been able to help you solved in this article.
- Taiwo Sotikare is a prolific writer and editor with years of experience. He has written hundreds of articles on Freelancing, Entrepreneurship and Career Development. He is the co-founder of DigitalPud.com
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