Book Review

Working Naked: A guide to the bare
essentials of home office life

Author: Lusa Kanarek

Paperback: $ 15.00
Amazon: $12.00
iPad or Kindle download: $9.00

Blakely Press, Dallas TX
September 2010

I couldn't resist a book with a great title like this! I downloaded it from Amazon to my iPad. The whole process was so simple and fast, I couldn't believe it. From the time I clicked on Amazon, found the book, bought the book and downloaded it to my iPAD, it took less than three minutes.

Lisa reveals the "The Naked Truth" which she explains as follows: "When I started working naked — working from home without the support of the corporate workplace — almost 20 years ago, my family and friends asked me over and over when I was going to get a "real" office." I can relate to this as I have spent most of my working life in a home office where I have everything I've needed to run my businesses, and I never have to commute. Of course, as an appraiser you have to leave the office to do inspections and other field work needed complete an appraisal.

What this book does most successfully is give you many, many bits of advice about how to set up a home office, starting with the best place in the house to locate your office, how to plan the office, find the right desk and chairs, what kind of files to use, etc.

Since I already have a home office and nowhere to move it, I found Section Two — From Chaos to Organization —more useful. Some of the advice was about knowing what belongs on your desk. I need to follow her advice and remove half the junk on my desk and "store it where I'll use it". This is followed by "control clutter" and where to store the stuff you have removed from your desk!

Up to now I have been a horizontal filer. The book says a better way is to "Think Vertically". Lisa recommends that, if you don't already have them, buy some 4 or 5 shelf book cases, and start storing your files in clearly labeled vertical file boxes.

Section Three is entitled "Getting Paper Trained." Her observation is "that when you work in a home office, the only limit on the number of piles of paper you create is the space available in the rooms in your house and possibly a garage." The book goes into detail with suggestions about how to break this habit.

I had never considered that there are three types of files: current files, reference files and historical files — and lumping them all together is really inefficient. My New Year's resolution is to revamp my filing along these lines!

One of the advantages of buying a book online is that you can read the reviews written by other readers, as well as the literary press. The following nicely summarizes why you should buy this book:

"Things like clothes and commutes seem so excessive in the modern day workplace: 'Working Naked' is a guide to working from home. Author Lisa Kanarek encourages people to use their home office to its fullest when working, and gives readers a rundown on the many advantages and challenges of the home office. From saving space to using home office equipment efficiently, to dealing with massive paper work and more, this is a comprehensive guide!"


P.S. A lot of what's in this book is also on Lisa Kanarek's helpful website: