10 reasons why coworking spaces are a great option for freelancers
The freelance jobs sector is fast becoming the destination for job seekers and those who are looking for more flexible work. As long as you have a skill, there is something out there for you - fivesquid the perfect case in point! Freelance jobs have helped close the unemployment gap, and there are more people quitting their regular jobs for a freelancing. The freelancing sector has also created a value chain, with opportunities for people to create a viable business. No, not another plug for fivesquid, we're actually putting the spotlight on coworking spaces and 10 reasons why they're a great option for freelancers.
What is coworking?
Coworking is basically an alternative to working from your own office or home. A coworking space allows you to do your freelance jobs while sharing a space with other freelancers. It is pretty much like a regular office (sometimes) but you do not have a boss howling commands at you or hovering over your desk to see if you are getting any work done.
Coworking space offers numerous perks in addition to the fact that you are most likely working with hardworking individuals with different skills working in different sectors. How cool is that? Initially, it can be intimidating sharing a coworking space with strangers, but it can be a great experience. The benefits far outweigh the downsides.
Coworking has been around for some time and its popularity has been soaring in recent years. According to Deskmag's Global Coworking Survey, over 1 million were estimated to work in a coworking space in 2017, and that figure is showing no signs of letting up.
10 reasons why coworking spaces are a great option for freelancers:
1. Free access to ideas
Apart from the obvious perks that come with coworking spaces, you also get free access to sharing and receiving ideas from coworkers. So, whether you work for a company or yourself, coworking allows you to tap into the ideas and experiences of individuals from various fields and industries. The opportunity to ask fellow coworkers their opinion on something you are working can be incredibly valuable.
2. Work-life balance
From the perspective of a freelancer, a coworking space offers some boundaries relating to where and when you work. Working from home provides comfort, but it can also make you lazy. Freelancers are likely to be more productive at a coworking space – unlike working at home where you can be easily distracted and for others it means home is home and not associated with work. It all boils down to what works for you.
3. The perks
In addition to providing a place to work, coworking spaces also offer many perks. Workout spaces, conference rooms, food services, equipment (printers and scanners) high-speed internet, and many more.
Working in a shared coworking space with other hardworking and smart individuals is one of the major reasons why people are choosing to work at coworking centres. A coworking space allows you to interact with like-minded individuals as well as expose you to a diversity of thought and creativity that you may not get working from home. The networking opportunities are endless at a coworking space and you will never know who you’ll meet to push your ideas to the next level or become your next client or business partner.
5. You learn new things
In addition to meeting people who might help in your journey to executing that great idea, you will also learn new things. Spending time with people from different industries will expose freelancers to new knowledge about things they were not aware of. And you know what they say – knowledge is power.
Many coworking spaces double as community hubs that drive other local businesses by creating a mutual relationship. The benefits can also be mutual in terms of member discounts at nearby stationery or supply shops and restaurants.
7. You work faster
Maybe it’s the thought that you are on a paid membership at a coworking space or that there is no bureaucracy as you have in traditional offices – you just seem to get a lot more done. You get whatever you need to work without having to wait for your request to be granted. There are almost no hoops or obstacles to jump at coworking centres.
8. Great conversations
Some of the greatest conversations that you have may actually be the ones with individuals from different works and spheres of life. Nothing beats hearing or seeing things through the perspective of another person. And since coworking spaces usually have dedicated areas for conversations and collaborating, you get to spend quality time exchanging ideas. You don’t get that kind of opportunity at your regular office without fear of being called out for spending “wasting” office resources and time having a chat.
9. Better Job Control and Flexibility
You basically get to work how and when you want. For instance, you can choose to work during the day today, but during the night tomorrow. This is the kind of flexibility that a coworking space offers. Many coworking spaces have flexible membership plans that can accommodate your style or pattern of working.
10. Cost Efficient
Renting out an office space can be very expensive. But a coworking space offers an affordable alternative. Imagine not having to invest in office furniture, hardware/equipment, and other setup costs. A coworking space gives you the head start you need to grow your business to the point where you can afford to rent a bigger office for your operations.
Hopefully you can now see that coworking spaces are so much more than desk space. They provide freelancers and small businesses a thriving environment to work in and in many cases lead to new opportunities. Coworking may be perfect for you as a freelancer and with many spaces offering flexibility and very little commitment it may be worth a punt. In an upcoming blog we'll explore some coworking spaces available in the UK, but if you can't wait till then google may have one or two up their sleeve!