Penrith City Star - Thursday 25 October 2012
Penrith City Star - 20 June 2012
Penrith City Star - Thursday June 2012
Penrith City Star - Thursday April 5, 2012
Penrith City Star - Thursday, April 5, 2012
Young Entrepreneur Business Mentoring Program 2011 - Useful knowledge sharedPenrith City Star, 16 June 2011
Attack Sparks WarningPenrith City Star - June 2011
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Hard work pays off for MarnieBlue Mountains Gazette, 3 February 2010
Working Hard to make it just like HomePenrith City Star, 3 September 2009
Website Careers Await StudentsParramatta Sun, 3 June 2009
Debbie Wears a Designer LabelSunday Telegraph Career One feature - 26 April 2009
Family friendly, home-based businessCareermums.com.au
By Joni Leimgruber
Debbie O’Connor was new to the country and had no idea how contracts or business laws worked in Australia. Half way through her first pregnancy, she decided to start her own home-based graphic design business. Initially, the business was simply a way to keep up to date with her pre-pregnancy graphic design career, while on maternity leave.
Debbie completed a small business enterprise management course during her pregnancy and by the time Joel, her son, was four months old, she decided it was time to start finding some clients. Six years later, White River Design, named after Debbie’s hometown in South Africa, is a multi award winning graphic design studio known for creating professional designs and developing brands for businesses from all over the world. Debbie now has three employees and still runs the business from her home office. She has even written a book in her spare time!
Debbie’s tips for running a successful home-based business:
Plan your day by writing a to-do list. Put your least favourite jobs at the top and get them over and done with first. Also, make sure you get dressed, first thing in the morning, as you would if you were going to an office. This way you’ll automatically take on a more professional approach to your work.
2. Business hours:
Set strict working hours (and keep to them) to ensure a balance between work and home life. Ensure that your family and friends know your ‘office hours’, so that they can learn to respect your work time.
Join business networks in your local area. This will alleviate isolation and open up new opportunities.
Pinpoint what your weaknesses are and try to outsource these jobs.
5. Dedicated office space:
Set up a dedicated office space – even if it is just a room at the back of the house. This will give you a private area to make calls and do your work without spilling into the lounge where children can interrupt you. Try and find a place that has a door. At the end of your working day, close the door as though you are leaving work and don’t go back in until morning. This will give you some down time away from work.
6. Have a website:
By having a website you not only look professional, but you can conduct a lot of business remotely and have clients find you 24 hours a day. You can also find out interesting things such as which pages get the most hits – this lets you know what people are looking at and wanting to know more about. For example, our portfolio page with our ‘before and after’ images gets the most hits.
7. Develop a strong brand:
If you and your projected business image looks like you are small and running a business from home, people will treat you like accordingly. By investing in a professional logo and business cards, you are sending the message that you take your business seriously, so your clients should too. Your brand could be what sets you apart from your competitors.