Virtual Offices: Does Your Business Really Need an Office?
Forbes.com just released a great article about whether or not it is important for a (small) business to maintain an office. As a small business owner, I have struggled with this question for many years. As the owner of two small businesses, I think the answer depends on the type of business you are running.
My first business is Boxless Media – a social media consulting and web design firm in Chicago. For this business, I can’t imagine operating without a physical office. Above all, our office offers the business a sense of credibility. The office is located in a very respected area that has a lot of character. The streets are lined with forward thinking, progressive companies. A simple address line on our website and business cards says so much about our business.
However, my other business is Laser Sounds – a DJ company. This business, since its inception, has maintained virtual addresses through our local UPS Stores. Simply put, to publish the location of such a large inventory of expensive equipment would be a tremendous security risk.
So it is difficult to leave you with a vague answer. This Forbes.com article is a great step forward for small businesses – offering validity to businesses operating in virtual office environments. I think the best advice is to evaluate your business model, the risks and advantages to a physical location, and then be open to both environments.