improving-business-productivity|Photo Courtesy ofDepositphotos.comhttp://depositphotos.com/8963420/stock-photo-Grey-haired-man-drinking-coffee-on-terrace-with-laptop-computer.html?sst=120Feel like you need a break from working alone in your home office? A change of scenery can often help boost your energy and morale. That’s why occasionally working from a coffee shop appeals to many solo entrepreneurs, remote workers and small business owners. Plus, it provides a convenient place to meet with clients, without the expense of renting office space. Yet many can find it difficult to remain productive in a casual setting where others are relaxing.

Today’s mobile technology makes it easier than ever to accomplish more tasks in a coffee shop, according to an article on the American Express small business blog OPEN Forum. But before you grab your laptop and head to the corner coffee shop, be sure to prepare the strategy and tools you’ll need to remain productive, connected and on top of your daily tasks. The following three tips can help you maintain office-level focus and workflow.

  1. Know your personal preferences and how to block time wasters: Whether working from a coffee shop or at home, it’s important to plan ahead for the challenges that any location might present. Drowning out noise with headphones may improve your focus, for example, but certain kinds of music may also distract you, making you less productive.
  2. Use cloud-based phone apps to stay connected: When you’re working in a coffee shop, the right phone apps can help you remain accessible to your customers and clients, the OPEN Forum article suggests. Look for apps that support conference calls and allow you to easily route your business number’s incoming calls to your mobile phone.
  3. Implement a paperless workflow: While working remotely, you can’t count on access to a printer, fax machine, scanner and other devices. To keep this from causing bottlenecks, work on your paperless workflow. With an Internet fax app, your mobile phone can replace a fax machine, for example, and you can use PDF tools such as Adobe Acrobat Pro to electronically sign and securely transmit contracts and other important documents.

These three productivity tips can help you make the most of working around other people in a coffee shop. And this new location could even pay off in more obvious ways. Perhaps you’ll run into someone you know, or even make a new business contact.

Do you ever work from a coffee shop or in another casual setting? If so, what additional suggestions do you have for maintaining productivity while working away from the office? Share your thoughts below in the comments section.

Source: American Express OPEN Forum, March 2013