Do you find working from your home office or local coffee shop too distracting? If your answer is yes, then maybe a coworking space might be right for you.
By Patrick Foster, Ecommerce Tips
Back in the days, freelancers were the only ones using coworking spaces. These days, the shared workplace trend has attracted a diverse group of people including entrepreneurs, independent contractors, remote workers, startups and even large corporations. And in large cities where office space is often prohibitively expensive, they are becoming an increasingly attractive option. Here’s why.
Who Uses Coworking Spaces… And Why?
There are currently over 50 million freelancers in the United States. And that number will only increase because by 2020 when 50% of the American workforce will consist of freelancers — both full-time and part-time.
In recent years however, startup entrepreneurs and remote workers are also jumping on the coworking bandwagon.
This is due to several reasons:
-For startups, the reason is simple — it saves them money. They appreciate the flexibility a coworking space offers. They do not need to spend money on renting office space for their team. Reducing cost is important if they are not venture-funded and are bootstrapping their way through.
-The reason remote workers opt for coworking space is very similar to those of a freelancer or independent contractor. The ability to choose one’s own work schedule without the isolation of working alone is a major motivator.
-Another reason why coworking spaces are attractive is the sense of community and the ability to brainstorm with other like-minded people. Entrepreneurs might find a co-founder and freelancers could exchange projects with one another for increased revenue.
Large corporations are also tapping into this innovative setup and are setting up satellite offices in coworking spaces. They hope that by immersing their employees in a more progressive culture, they can come up with cool ideas and could kick off a cycle of innovation within the corporation.
Benefits of Coworking Spaces in Large Cities
Coworking spaces are only going to keep growing – and there are several statistics to prove it. Many people are already using these shared workspaces to be more productive and have a strong work/life balance.
A coworking space offers several office-like amenities. These include desks and workstations, private meeting rooms, kitchens (with unlimited coffee) and Wi-Fi.
As well as these amenities, there are several benefits of working in coworking spaces. We’ve listed the five top reasons below.
Coworking benefit #1 – Cost-Effectiveness
Renting traditional office spaces can be quite expensive for startups. This is especially true if you are living in a major city.
And of course, renting is out of the question for freelancers. The overhead costs would not be worth it. Coworking spaces are a cost-effective alternative.
Freelancers and startups alike can save a lot of money because they only pay for what they use. Options exist for renting either a shared or a dedicated workstation. Additionally, most of these shared workspaces offer meeting rooms where startups can have meetings or brainstorming sessions.
Coworking benefit #2 – Offers Flexibility
One of the key differences between a traditional office space and a coworking space is the amount of flexibility it offers.
In this day and age, it’s actually rare to find a business tethered to a single location for a prolonged period of time. More and more, we are seeing self-starters build digital businesses from their spare bedroom. There are thousands of online businesses for sale in LA alone that are ready to pick up for a remote business that can operate anywhere. The fact is, for many businesses, you don’t need a fixed address. All you need is an internet connection.
So where traditional offices tend to offer a fixed lease of at least a year, coworking spaces offer memberships. These coworking membership packages come with various options, including printing, drinks, snacks, mail and phone services, and so on.
Coworking space memberships can range from daily access, to limited monthly access to unlimited monthly access. The best part is that you can cancel your membership any time you want with little to no penalization.
Coworking benefit #3 – Opportunities to Network
One of the most important benefits of using coworking spaces is the opportunity it provides to network with other like-minded people.
Networking used to be limited to live events. Now, you can easily meet other people through the various meetup events most coworking spaces offer.
These networking events are usually hosted every month and the goal is for members of the coworking space to get to know each other. Therefore, if you want to grow your network, joining a coworking space would be a great idea.
Coworking benefit #4 – Enables ProductivityOne of the main reasons why freelancers and remote workers prefer coworking spaces is because they can be more productive.
It is easy to get distracted at home. Your dog could need walking. You might need to feed your cat. A million things could distract you. Coffee shops are no different. These distractions slowly eat away at your productivity.
Coworking spaces eliminate these distractions. They help members become more productive. In fact, according to business.com, 74% of coworkers are more productive when compared to traditional office workers.
Coworking benefit #5 –Avenue for Creative Collaboration
Creative collaboration is another benefit you can expect from coworking spaces. Working in close proximity with lots of other creative entrepreneurs and freelancers can help you unlock your own creative juices.
Collaborating with others in a shared workspace allows you to gather new perspective that could prove useful to your own business. And by simply watching others brainstorm together, you can have the epiphany you need to overcome your own obstacles.
It doesn’t matter if you are a freelancer, entrepreneur, startup, or remote worker — your productivity can benefit immensely by coworking.
You can avoid distractions, collaborate creatively with other like-minded individuals, and grow your professional network.
With the rise of remote jobs, and the projected growth of freelancing, coworking is only going to keep growing in the years to come.
About the Author
Patrick Foster spends much of his time in co-working spaces around the world, where he writes for Ecommerce Tips, an online resource for everything ecommerce. If you want the latest marketing hacks and business tips, check out the latest posts on Twitter @myecommercetips.