If you’re a freelancer or a startup CEO, you may struggle to find a great place to work. While remote work has its pros and cons, some people prefer working from an office. Instead of renting an entire office for yourself, you may have considered coworking spaces as a solution for you or your team.
Here’s why coworking spaces are incredibly useful for freelancers, small teams and startups and how you can get their maximum potential.
Renting an entire office can be incredibly expensive. For larger teams, the price of rent, utilities, insurance, and associated costs can go into thousands of dollars. You’ll struggle to find the ideal place and you may end up overpaying just to get your preferred location.
The average cost of coworking around the world, image by Deskmag
With coworking spaces, you only pay for what you use, which means that you can have 15 people one day, 10 people the next and so on. You can scale and downsize as you wish. Seeing how startups can grow (and shrink) incredibly fast, it’s great to have this cushion.
As a freelancer, you’ll have to pay for your own electricity, internet, printer, air conditioning and everything else you would in a normal office. Coworking spaces have a single fee that gives you a dedicated space, internet and most times, plenty of coffee and some snacks. In other words, you’re care-free when it comes to costs.
There are numerous studies showing that remote workers and teams are not only as productive as those in-house, but even more productive than their peers. In reality, we often lose out on productivity because of the many distractions we have in our homes and we simply can’t manage our time well enough.
Then there is the fact that you’re working alone from the comfort of your own home. Who’s stopping you from taking a 2-hour break and watching a few episodes of Futurama? In co-working spaces, there are plenty of people like you who come in to get work done and you feel a certain kind of pressure to work yourself – even if your boss is not there in the room, looking over your shoulder.
Another element that adds to your productivity is the very design of coworking spaces. Unlike your home office (or even worse, a coffee shop or a public location), these spaces have everything you need to get work done. Comfortable chairs, spacious tables, ample room, fast wi-fi, outlets for charging, air-conditioning and heating, printers and scanners, coffee machines… You get everything you would in a traditional office so you can focus on work and forget about the trivialities.
No matter if you’re working from a traditional office or from your home, the people you meet every day will pretty much be the same. Truth be told, you’ll hardly meet anyone if you’re working remotely, which is one of the biggest challenges of the remote lifestyle. On the other hand, coworking gives you tons of opportunities to meet people from different professions.
Unlike a regular office, you can meet people from your industry or other related fields. It’s a great opportunity to meet someone new, start new business ventures or simply get to talk to a colleague instead of talking to yourself while working from home.
Even if you don’t find the business opportunity of a lifetime, it’s still a great idea for freelancers and remote workers to meet someone other than the postman during their work hours. As multiple studies have shown, loneliness can have negative effects on your physical and mental health.
Finally, if you need a business partner or a client, meeting them in your living room is far from ideal. Most coworking spaces have dedicated meeting rooms where you can meet your clients without embarrassment or inconvenience.
The work-life balance
Having worked remotely for the past couple of years, I have nothing but words of praise for this way of work. However, it’s not all fine and dandy. As many remote employees will attest, turning off can be a huge issue, especially if you work flexible hours.
Before you know it, you’re checking work emails at 10 PM on the weekend and answering to your coworkers on Slack as you’re having dinner. With no physical boundaries, your house feels like an office and vice versa.
On the other hand, co-working gives you that feeling of work, without the obligation of sitting in an office and waiting for the clock to hit 5 PM. You’re free to come and leave as you please. That way, you can have both freedom and structure, as you need them.
Coworking spaces are an excellent solution for small companies, startups and remote employees who want to become more productive, create new connections, save plenty of money and escape the routine of the boring old office.
Mile Živković is a content writer and work-life balance expert at Chanty – a simple and AI-powered Slack alternative. When Mile isn’t busy writing epic posts on productivity, work-life balance and time management for Chanty blog, he’s probably driving somewhere. His hobbies include cars (huge fan of Alfa Romeo), photography and collecting pocket knives. You can catch him on LinkedIn.