Working from home can be pretty lonely at times. There are moments when you desperately need to share your latest success with someone or just need someone to talk to in order to release some stress.
Being cooped up in your bedroom office for endless hours can often be a little daunting. Enter the new age phenomenon of co-working and you might have the perfect answer to all these woes!
Co-working is a rising trend among professionals and there definitely seems to be something special about it if the rising number of co-working spaces around the world is anything to go by.
Traditionally opted for by freelancers, independent contractors and start-ups, today even the high-profile corporate employees are finding co-working attractive enough to swap their business suits for jeans and tees.
The result is the emergence of large co-working chains where blue-collared employees work alongside freelancers and start-up entrepreneurs in an environment that has a fun social vibe, pool tables, quirky furniture and in some cases, a play area for the pets too!
WHY SHOULD YOU OPT FOR COWORKING?
Co-working is basically a shared working environment where many people work together in the same office space but are generally not employed by the same business. There are a lot of benefits attached to this concept:
- Network building
In a co-working space, every individual sitting around you is a professional who’s most probably great at what he/she does. It is a great place to build connections and do networking. If you are a budding entrepreneur, chances are bright you might run into like-minded people who may help taking your business idea further.
- Offers refuge from distractions of home
Co-working not only offers a perfect solution to the problem of isolation that most work-from-home professionals face, it also offers an ideal refuge from the innumerable distractions that one faces at home.
- Feeling of being a part of community
The feel of being a part of community is one of the major reasons why people are increasingly opting for co-working, as opposed to working from home for free or renting a small office space. While coworkers continue to enjoy their autonomy, they also get that feeling of being a part of a group, which helps them create some discipline in their work life and motivates them too.
- It is pocket friendly too!
Co-working is definitely way cheaper than renting out an entire office. Most co-working spaces charge a nominal rent and don’t even bind you in a lock-in contract. Depending on your requirements, you can find places that offer daily rates or monthly contracts. Besides, almost all spaces offer basic services like printers, internet/phone connection and fax machines, so that saves a lot of time and money too.
COWORKING AND SUSTAINABILITY
Due to its inherent sharing-oriented constitution, co-working tends to be eco-friendly and favors sustainability to a great extent. Resources such as power, phone, internet services and even space are shared in a much more efficient manner than having people work in their individual spaces, even if it is their bedroom!
A co-working space is essentially a cross between a traditional office and a college campus, so co-working chains take careful measures to make it appealing enough for young people. Since today’s youth is quite aware of environmental sustainability, more and more co-working spaces are incorporating eco-friendly practices into their spaces in a variety of ways.
A few examples:
Grind, one of the premier co-working spaces in Manhattan, is a staunch supporter of green co-working. Grind has installed low water usage faucets and toilettes, Tru-stile doors, CFL lighting, and FLOR tiles. It provides silverware, cups and glasses for its members to minimize plastic utensil usage.
CoCoon, Hong Kong’s largest co-working space, has been dedicated to its goal of sustainability even before it opened its doors. The plants in CoCoon’s café are all local and drought-resistant, so they require minimal resources for survival. It has bamboo floors, LEDs that consume negligible energy and even the walls have been painted with non-toxic paints.
Green Spaces in New York is yet another co-working space that is a huge supporter of sustainability. In fact, most of the companies working out of Green Spaces are environment friendly and either non-profit or social entrepreneurs.
To sum up, co-working is a great concept that is here to stay. Besides being a sustainable alternative to the traditional work-from-home option, it also allows professional from different fields to come together in a shared place to enjoy greater productivity and a sense of community.