The world of freelancing has seen some big changes in the past several years, and there are now more choices than ever when it comes to setting up a work homebase. Out of all the options available, how do you know if coworking is right for you? If you identify with any of the reasons below, it might be time to take the plunge.
You Want a Community
Working for yourself is great until loneliness begins to creep in. The problem with loneliness is that it can actually have a significant negative impact on your health. It’s shown to be on par with smoking 15 cigarettes a day when it comes to reducing your lifespan. One of the greatest benefits that coworking offers is a sense of community. Many coworking spaces offer programs and events ranging from happy hours to weekly yoga sessions, all designed to encourage interaction amongst members. They offer a great way to get to know other self-employed individuals and regain the community one loses when leaving a traditional office environment.
Coworking’s benefits extend beyond the purely social opportunities – it also provides the chance for business collaboration, putting freelancers in contact with other talented individuals and their collective brainpower. For many solopreneurs, it’s simply not possible to do everything alone, and coworking allows you to tap into the skills and experience of your fellow members to create something great. Startups that utilize coworking spaces can also benefit from this collaborative environment that puts a wealth of freelance talent within arm’s reach.
You Want More Resources
Growing your business can be a challenge without the proper resources. Besides access to other entrepreneurs, coworking spaces often provide freelancers and startups with other helpful business resources, such as virtual business addresses, mentoring programs, and even classes or seminars. If you are considering a coworking membership, check out what your local spaces have to offer in terms of these resources, and decide which would be most helpful for your business growth.
You’ve Outgrown the Home Office
Working from home can work wonderfully for some freelancers, but for others, it can prove to be a distracting proposition. If you’re having a tough time staying focused and working from a coffee shop isn’t cutting it either, coworking is a great next step. It offers an alternative to traditional office space that is especially attractive for startups, as it’s oftentimes much more flexible and more affordable. There are a wide range of memberships that suit a variety of work styles and needs, giving members more options than merely a desk. Coworking spaces often offer conference room rentals as well, which is helpful if you’re hosting a client meeting and want to impress.
You Want to Feel Inspired
If you’ve been stuck in a creative rut, a change of scenery might be just what you need to get your ideas flowing once more. Studies have shown that surrounding yourself with a moderate amount of noise, such as the low background buzz of quiet conversation or music, can promote creative thinking. And there’s something to be said for giving yourself inspiring surroundings. Combine ambiance with the creative people you find in a coworking space, and inspiration is sure to strike.
While coworking spaces don’t work for every freelancer, they can be an invaluable asset for you and your business if you’re looking to meet fellow solopreneurs, gain access to more business resources, and improve your creativity. And with more of these spaces appearing in recent years, there’s sure to be one that caters to your needs.
Caroline Gillan works for HeadSpace Dallas, a coworking space in Carrollton, Texas for creative entrepreneurs to thrive and achieve their business goals.