If you’re an independent professional, working from home can be lonely, and a home office or noisy cafe may not be the most productive work environment. Established around 2000, coworking (or co-working) is a quickly evolving movement that brings together isolated freelancers into collaborative work spaces.
Coworking has become extremely popular worldwide as a way for those who work at home to get in some socializing time, network with like-minded individuals and escape the monotony of a home office. Most importantly, having other motivated and disciplined freelancers around you can offer a big boost in your productivity and give you inspiration for new ideas.
Here are our favorite reasons to start coworking:
1. No longer alone, you can socialize
At long last, you can stare at something else besides your computer screen, the window or the condescending eyes of your cat.
No more eating lunch alone, no more sneaking a snack break alone! Coworking is not just work—it’s supposed to make work fun, too. Some of the larger coworking spaces offer entertainment and leisure areas when you want play a quick game of ping pong or lounge in a bean bag chair for a chat with another co-worker.
Also, many coworking spaces organize after-work events, like drinks and dinner, a movie outing or a game night.
2. Your network will grow
So you finally get to chit chat with someone about your dog’s latest trick or that new farm to table eatery that just opened. But co-working spaces are also about getting down to business with like-minded individuals.
Co-working spaces attract freelancers from a wide range of industries, and that architect sitting nearby may need to hire you for your programming skills.
3. You’ll boost your productivity
There’s no pile of laundry or dishes to slow you down, and all the freelancers around you are typing furiously away at their keyboards.
No more distractions, no more excuses—and that’s one very important thing that a co-working space can guarantee that your home office can’t.
4. You can learn from your coworkers
Just hanging around the water cooler and chatting with your fellow co-workers can be an educational experience in itself as you pick up professional tips and tricks. But coworking venues also tend to host professional lectures, workshops and seminars or even courses for those in various industries.
5. You’ll be more professional
Ever try having a Skype meeting with dogs barking in the other room, or nonstop coffee shop noise all around you? Yeah, it sucks.
Instead of hanging out at a cafe for 6 hours and trying to appear professional to clients, most co-working spaces have conference rooms and quiet areas you can use. You get a calm, quiet workspace with reliable WiFi, minus the stress and unpredictability of a Starbucks.
While a perk of working from home is staying in your pajamas all day and not even having to get out of bed, it often gets old and your productivity can tank dramatically. Simply going through the motions of getting ready for work and heading to the office in itself changes how you think and feel about your work.
Combining the social atmosphere of a professional office with the peace and privacy of working alone at home, co-working has a lot to offer the independent professional. Start your venue search on www.wiki.coworking.com to discover what venue matches your style.
This article was written by staff writer Suchi Rudra. Her mission is to help fight your evil debt blob and get your personal finances in tip top shape.
Photos: Pinterest, swissmiss studio, MercyWatch, WarmSleepy
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