Sharing office space/coworking is becoming the standard for startups, freelancers, designers, technologists, and entrepreneurs these days. You can find ads offering shared office space in most major cities all over the world. Is it as good as people say? Is it for me?
To answer your questions, let’s dig deeper into the world of shared space by listing the good and the bad things about it.
First, let’s talk about all the good things coworking has to offer.
The Advantages of Coworking
#1. Keeping the cost down
People who are just starting out don’t have the luxury of spending too much cash. Being frugal before you make your first cent is a must. With space sharing, you don’t need to pay for the whole office. In the San Francisco area, for example, you can rent coworking spaces with only $300 a month. Private office space costs $1,400 and up. The saving is clear here.
#2. Breaking from isolation
Some people can be more productive when working in solitary in their home office and some just can’t. For the latter, coworking is a huge relieve. You’re still going solo but the presence of similar people doing their own thing helps your mood.
#3. Keeping things professional
Working at home is great and all, but sometimes it traps you into the state of perpetual casualness. You start working whenever may even end up looking at cat videos and memes all day long. With coworking, you need to get dressed properly, go to the “office”, and meet people in a professional setting. All that affect your attitude towards work.
When you’re surrounded by professionals, you can’t help being one too.
#4. Getting closer to clients
When you often need to make presentations and meet clients, working in close proximity with the clients mean less time spent in traffic. Professionals value punctuality, and when your just one or two blocks away from them, being punctual is easy.
OK, now we move on the not-so-good things about coworking.
The Disadvantages of Coworking
#1. Lack of privacy
Want to make calls? The guy sitting next to you can hear everything. Keeping things secret between you and clients is going to be hard or really hard. It’s the same thing when trying to keep your creative work away from prying eyes.
Some coworking space has a special phone booth that lets you take and make calls in private. But none provides a private space where you can design your next big project without worrying about copycats sneaking up behind your back.
#2. Noise disturbance
A coworking space is the same as any office when it comes to noise. You’ll hear phones ringing, printers printing, people talking, and so on. It’s fine when you’re the one making the noises, but when someone else doing it, it can get on your nerve.
An easy fix is to wear headphones. Play your favorite ambient sound to boost productivity and get your work done.
#3. Shared everything
Unlike in a home office, you have to share everything when you’re in a shared office. Printers, internet connection, electrical outlets, lights, and practically everything. It’s stressful when you can’t have things you need just the way you want them.
For introverts, this is the part that scares them the most. You have to make small talks, answering good mornings, and all that.
Things are even worse for extroverts. You’re spending too much time trying to get that introvert to respond to your good mornings and turning one small talk about the weather into a whole hour of conversation about high school.
Extroverts face a unique challenge in a coworking space. New people are coming and going all the time, each with their own unique style, personality, and background story. You can see where we’re going with this, right?
Although it’s a very intriguing offer for millenials, coworking still has its downsides. Take into considerations all the good and the bad so you know for sure if sharing office space is the right choice for you.