Shared workspaces provide an alternative to the kitchen tables, the bedrooms, and (for the fortunate) the home offices that often host remote work. Coworking is a remote work alternative that provides a change of scenery and, more importantly, provides an opportunity to develop more efficient and deliberate work practices.
- Unstable internet
- Non-ergonomic furniture
- Collaboration with others
- Separate work environment from home life
The first step is to separate the ideas of work from home and remote work.
Work Near Home
In May, The New Yorker published an article advocating working near home instead of from home. Work from home has its conveniences, but your surroundings will constantly tug on your attention. Just looking up from your computer can sidetrack you with a dozen concerns unrelated to the task at hand.
This is why you see so many freelancers at busy coffee shops. As we work, our brains filter out information that we see as irrelevant. Noise at a cafe is much less likely to feel relevant than even the quietest home.
Of course, noise can still be distracting. Coworking spaces provide dedicated workspaces ideal for remote work. Professionals move freely between rented desks or offices to more relaxed spaces that are perfect for networking and collaboration.
This kind of remote work splits the difference between a traditional office and working from home. With a dedicated workspace, you can maintain the convenience and autonomy you enjoy when you work from home without wrestling with distractions.
Reset Your Surroundings
You can also benefit from coworking spaces if you enjoy working from home. A new environment can unlock creativity and enrich perspectives. Consider renting a desk just for when you need to recharge or when you are seeking inspiration.
Come to the Office with Purpose
Some things simply work better in person. However, this does not have to be a downside of remote work. Rather, it forces you to ask whether a meeting’s goals can be accomplished online. If not, then your team’s in-person meeting will already have a clearly articulated purpose that galvanizes all involved.
Coworking spaces offer whatever types of spaces you need to reach your goals. You can rent a conference room once a week or base a project out of proximity offices. Neighbouring private offices give your team an area to call their own, an office away from the office.
Offset the Drawbacks of Working from Home
Working from home has downsides. Training and integrating new team members will be more challenging without an office space. So are some team projects. Bringing remote work out of the home and into a coworking space counteracts these specific challenges.
Organizations with access to coworking spaces can pivot from remote work to hybrid schedules as needed. More flexible organizations have the advantage of adapting to each project as it comes.
Independent freelancers benefit from an environment that encourages networking. Larger organizations can rent proximity offices that foster in-person communication without committing to costly, long-term office contracts.
Platforms like Slate and ZOOM have transformed collaboration. But many remote workers still miss the social aspects of the office. Coworking spaces bring people together in both formal and informal settings. Dynamic communication like this is key to success.
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- Remote Work Doesn’t Have to Mean Working from Home - September 20, 2021
- Restoring Confidence and Safety at alternawork - August 27, 2021
- The State of Coworking in 2020 (and Where It’s Going From Here) - January 21, 2020