Coworking spaces are becoming the popular choice for entrepreneurs and freelancers who have realized the benefits of coworking and have left behind the coffee shops in favor of these collaborative, professional environments. Covid-19 has allowed so many of us to determine how we work best and in what environment.
If you’re reading this, perhaps you’re ready to join the 3.1 million people around the world who cowork each day. Building your business from a coworking space gives you access to other professionals, office equipment, educational and social events (in the future), and more. But, if you’re still on the fence as to whether coworking is for you, here are nine things to look for in a coworking space that will boost your chances at building a successful business.
Visit the coworking space you’re considering and note your first impressions. Is it well kept? Do people seem happy? Were you welcomed by those there? Is it a place you feel good about bringing your clients into for meetings? Do you like the layout? Is there enough natural lighting? If you intend to become a member of your local coworking space, the environment must suit you. If not, chances are you won’t work there for long.
First impressions matter. When you choose to join a community of entrepreneurs in a coworking space, be sure these are people you see yourself getting along with, collaborating with, and sharing referrals with an effort to grow your businesses. You also want to make sure to notice if people are actively engaging with one another.
Find out what comes with your membership. Does the coworking offer educational talks, social events, member spotlights on social media? Are coffee, tea, and snacks free for consumption? Learn what you get for the money you invest.
Scope the layout of the coworking space. Is there ample seating? How are the desks arranged? What about private offices if you want our own space? Is there enough space for you to spread out and encroach on others?
Having available meeting rooms makes it easy for holding seminars and teleconferences, or for planning sessions. Check your coworking space to see if your meeting room has audio/visual equipment, teleconferencing equipment and access, and if use comes in your membership package or if you have to pay a fee to use it.
When you choose a coworking space, you want the commute to be reasonable for you, but also your clients. Choose an office that’s easy to get to and close to places that are important to you and your business.
Find out what’s available to you in your membership. Do you have access to podcasting and video equipment (if needed)? Is there a gym or fitness area on-site? Can you use the office printer? How is WiFi? You’ll want to know if the connection speed is fast enough to support the entire coworking space’s use and if it’s reliable. Find out what comes with each level of membership and weigh what you need against what you may be willing to pay a little extra to use on a limited basis.
Depending on your membership level, you may be granted 24/7 access. If that’s important to you, find out which memberships offer open access.
Each coworking space comes at its own price. Consider what’s important to your business and how much space you can afford. If that’s simply a hot desk a few days or every day to begin, it’s a start. As you get used to the environment and your business grows, you can freely increase your membership and get a dedicated workspace or a private office.
It may take you some time to check out and find a coworking space that meets your needs. As you visit and try out spaces (we would love to have you at Work/Place) think about what you read and measure it against what you need to be successful in business and coworking.