We’ve all heard the expression “two minds are better than one”, but what about 5, 10, 50, or even 100 minds?! Imagine the possibilities! Ok, 100 minds might just confuse things, but you get the picture. This is what coworking is all about; collaboration. If you’re like me, you might think you have the best ideas or that you work better by yourself and that you do all the things the best possible way, and then someone comes along and suggests a really obvious alternative that is 1000x better. Sure, some of your best ideas do come from within, but if you aren’t bouncing them off your peers and seeking outside advice then you’re really just working in an echo chamber and only doing yourself a disservice.
You might be saying, “Yea, but I collaborate and bounce my ideas off my colleagues all the time.” That’s great and it’s certainly better than not doing so at all, but if it’s within your own team then it’s really just a bigger echo chamber. Within your team, everyone is working towards the same goals and achievements for the team (in theory), so naturally, it’s difficult to not succumb to tunnel vision. Having a completely objective outside opinion to consult with and bounce ideas off of is incredibly valuable and can’t be replicated from the inside. With coworking, these outside resources are inside the same office and come free of charge!
In shared workspaces, startups are often able to tap into resources simply by tapping the shoulder of the person working across the room. Need a marketing guru? Maybe legal counsel or representation? How about coding? Chances are there are these professionals and many more working from the very same office. And if you’re part of the same community, your odds of getting a good deal are much better than going through someone you found on Google. By nature, startups have the odds stacked against them, so seeing and better yet, helping your fellow co-workers succeed is truly inspiring.
Lastly, a great coworking space (such as WorkAbility) should host a plethora of workshops, discussions, and networking events. Most, if not all, of those events, should be free-of-charge to members. We’re talkin’ free access to top-notch networking and learning opportunities – this alone is priceless!
2. Work-Life balance
It’s trendy for companies these days to throw around the phrase “work-life balance” to lure potential employees, but how many of them actually provide that? A great shared workspace should not only allow you to enjoy life outside of the office, it should encourage you to enjoy life within the office! At WorkAbility, some of the ways we do that are by letting you bring your dog to work every day, offering you complimentary breakfast on the daily, hosting free yoga and meditation classes multiple times a week, and rewarding you with free booze at our member happy hours.
Like many startups and entrepreneurs, you may be considering ditching the dining room table or coffee shop for an actual office. But how much of a hit will your profit margin take? Let’s say you find a 300 square foot office in Denver at $1.75 per foot. That’s a pretty small office at a pretty good rate, but you’d still be paying $525 a month. That’s on top of your $2,000/mo 1 bedroom apartment. But what if you could pay just $135/mo for a roaming membership at a shared workspace and take advantage of all of the free perks that comes with? Talk about a no-brainer.
4. Mind your own business…and leave the rest to us
Let’s say you can afford $500/mo or even $1,000/mo. Great! Now all you have to worry about is parking, internet, a printer/copier, ink, paper, other office supplies, furniture, coffee, snacks, etc, etc. Or you could spend less money on an office (or roaming membership or dedicated desk) AND have all of those things taken care of for you. Running a business is challenging enough. Leave all the… small things…to your coworking space…and Blink-182 😉
Ok, so we’ve determined that using a shared workspace can be a great move for your startup because it’s collaborative, it provides a strong work-life balance, it’s affordable, and it allows you to focus on your business. But one plus that often goes overlooked is image. Appearances and first impressions are huge in business, and while you may be saving dough by running your business from home, you certainly aren’t impressing any potential clients or partners by having to “host” them in a coffee shop or by having your mail delivered to a home address. These things are understandable when you’re first starting out, but if you’re gonna take that next step you’re going to have to impress some folks along the way. Even if you only have a roaming membership as opposed to an actual office, any shared workspace that’s worth a damn will have conference rooms or other places available to host meetings, interviews, etc, as well as a mail delivery service and PO boxes.
So there you have it – 5 reasons why sharing an office will take your startup to the next level. If you still aren’t convinced, book a tour with WorkAbility & come see for yourself why coworking is the move. We’ll happily hook you up with some free day passes so you can get the full experience. Try it out!