Are you an entrepreneur wondering if a shared office space is for you? It is a well-known fact that coworking spaces offer many advantages to freelancers and small business owners, but are they worth it for people who will not use them all of the time? The answer is a resounding “Yes!” You do not have to go to a coworking space every single day to reap the many benefits that come from joining one. The following list includes five ways that your business could grow and become more competitive by using a shared office space just once a week.
One of the great things about using a shared office space is the fact that other people will use it too, and most of them will be other business owners. This makes it the ideal place to network and forge business connections. You never know when you will find a regular client among those who share your office space with you. In addition, some of the other businesses may be able to help you make your own company better. For example, there could be a freelancer who could assist you in building your website or a design company that could work with you to create an eye-catching logo.
While it may seem daunting to approach other people, this skill can be developed with practice and strategy. On the other hand, however, you do not necessarily need to frequent your coworking space and talk to as many people as possible while you are there in order to take advantage of these connections. Like Alley, many shared office spaces have member directories. This means you can easily reach out to potential clients or partners. As an added bonus, you already have a place to meet, which brings us to our second point…
A coworking space provides a professional location to host meetings. Most have private rooms that members can rent and which can accommodate varying numbers of people. Alternatively, entrepreneurs can meet one-on-one with clients in a more open part of the building.
When you meet with a client in a restaurant or café, you will usually be expected to buy something for you and for the client or partner. Most coworking spaces, however, have snacks and coffee readily available. In addition to being more professional and more spacious than other location options, meetings at shared office spaces can be quite the budget saver!
Most coworking spaces keep coffee and snacks on hand, which can save you money and help you focus. In addition, however, many coworking spaces provide other food on particular occasions. At Alley, for example, members can even enjoy a weekly catered lunch and a weekly happy hour. Those would definitely be good days to visit your shared office space!
In addition to food, shared office spaces provide a variety of other perks to members. For example, reliable wi-fi is included with memberships. All Alley locations also include nursing rooms, cleaning services, and phone booths. Your shared office space may even provide business services such as event management, web design, marketing, and recruiting.
Membership at a shared office space will also typically include a mailing address. This provides businesses with a greater sense of legitimacy and also helps to separate your business from your personal life.
One of the best benefits of using a shared office space even just once a week is access to continuing education and professional development opportunities. Business owners can learn about ways to expand their company through better marketing strategies, or they can talk about ways to achieve a better work-life balance. They can even develop long term goals and plans for achieving them. The access to these opportunities gives entrepreneurs who use a shared office space a competitive edge over their peers.
Freelancing can get really repetitive really fast. If you work at the same place every day, you can become too comfortable. It is only by getting out of your comfort zone and challenging yourself that you can make real progress.
This is true whether you work in a public space, like a library or a café, or at your home. Working from home in particular, however, can be really distracting. The constant hum of ambient noise found at cafés and shared office spaces has been found to increase productivity. While this can be mimicked with a YouTube video, but it will not have the same effect. Additionally, the needs of the home or personal interests can provide another layer of distraction. There are always dishes that need to be done. There are always books that need to be read. Getting out of the house removes these temptations, allowing for more work to be done in less time with less stress. In fact, one study found that most freelancers agreed working in a coworking space increased their focus. The combination of ambient noise and lack of distractions could be two reasons why!
You do not need to use a shared office space every day to reap the well-known benefits of coworking spaces. Even going just once a week can give you a great place for weekly meetings and a space to really get work done. In addition, the membership provides benefits, including a list of other members access to educational opportunities, that can give your business a competitive edge.
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